January 31, 2018,
Memorial of Saint John Bosco, Priest
The Gospel Today
Jesus departed from there and came to his native place,
accompanied by his disciples.
When the sabbath came he began to teach in the synagogue,
and many who heard him were astonished.
They said, “Where did this man get all this?
What kind of wisdom has been given him?
What mighty deeds are wrought by his hands!
Is he not the carpenter, the son of Mary,
and the brother of James and Joseph and Judas and Simon?
And are not his sisters here with us?”
And they took offense at him.
Jesus said to them,
“A prophet is not without honor except in his native place
and among his own kin and in his own house.”
So he was not able to perform any mighty deed there,
apart from curing a few sick people by laying his hands on them.
He was amazed at their lack of faith.
Reflection (Sem. Eric Yabut)
The Gospel for today invites us to see if Christ is manifested through our actions and words that come from our mouth. Gossip is a sin in which can lead us to judge others. Christ was being judged by His own neighbors as He enters Nazareth. Instead of being proud on what Jesus did to others, He and even His family was humiliated. Jesus remains humble and meek with this kind of persecution. Some of us might fight back if the same situation happened to us.
With what had happen, Jesus even said in the Gospel reading that, “A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and among his own kin and his own house.” Jesus was very true in these words and sadly, sometimes those who are close to us do not believe even in the changes happening in our life and on the things which for them are impossible to do. Some will say, “He was like that before.” If we really know the person from within, we will be glad because there are changes happening in their life. Of course we cannot please everybody. I myself experience this kind of persecution but I believe the One who sees my changes is very happy and glad because I obeyed His will in my life. We do not owe some explanation to others if we change for the better, the important matter is that we change because there is a purity of heart and intention for that change.
Jesus invites us to trust our brothers and sisters. Let us forget our personal biases and give ourselves a chance to know them better. Nowadays we really need to understand and respect each other to build unity. Let us not judge our neighbor, instead have the initiative to share the love and mercy from our God.