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First Week of Ordinary Time

Heb. 1:1-6 & Mk. 1 14-20

Who wrote the letter to the Hebrews? It used to be thought that it was St. Paul's fourteenth epistle. But modern Scripture scholars are convinced he did not write it, and we just don’t know who did. That is why today’s reading should be introduced as "A reading from the letter to the Hebrews”.

Its author is convinced that God has spoken to us more clearly and intimately than He ever did before. "In times past, God spoke in varied and fragmentary ways through the prophets” but now "He has spoken to us through His Son.” Divine revelation through the prophets was, indeed, "fragmentary". The prophets knew God only partially themselves. But when Jesus came into the world He revealed the whole truth about His Father. The result is that we are more fortunate than the people who lived before Jesus, because we have a much better idea of God. Jesus reveals just how close God is to us and how much He loves us. Our heavenly Father never wants to lose any one of us. He is kind and forgiving. Now we need no longer be afraid because love has banished all fear. By listening to Jesus and trying our best every day to follow His example, we are on the right path to knowing the answers to the great questions of life … what is God like and what does He want of us?

In the Gospel we see Jesus calling His first followers, the first ones who would receive the revelation. It was on their hearts that He wanted to write His message to be carried to the ends of the Earth. We are amazed at the promptness and generosity of Peter, Andrew, James and John in answering His call to follow Him. But through the apostles Jesus has revealed the truths about God to us and He has called us to follow Him and continue their work on His behalf. May we be just as thrilled, prompt and willing at following Him now as were those first followers then.

Heavenly Father, how can we thank You enough for entrusting us with the revelation of Your Son, and for choosing us to continue doing the work He began.

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