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Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time

Daily Mass Readings for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1

  • First ReadingHebrews 4:1-5, 11: We must be vigilant to enter God’s rest, unlike our ancestors who failed to unite faith with hearing the Good News. Believers must strive to avoid their pattern of disobedience.
  • Responsorial PsalmPsalm 78: We commit to passing down the Lord’s mighty acts and teachings, encouraging future generations to trust and obey God, unlike our ancestors’ stubborn and unfaithful ways.
  • Gospel Mark 2:1-12: In Capernaum, Jesus’ presence in a house attracted a large crowd, hindering access. Determined, four men carrying a paralyzed friend dismantled the roof to lower him before Jesus. Recognizing their faith, Jesus forgave the man’s sins, sparking internal accusations of blasphemy from scribes. To demonstrate His authority to forgive sins, Jesus healed the paralytic, commanding him to walk. The man did, astonishing everyone, leading to high praises for God and awe at the unprecedented event.

They came bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. Unable to get near Jesus because of the crowd, they opened up the roof above him. After they had broken through, they let down the mat on which the paralytic was lying.

Mark 2:3-4

Themes for the Readings for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1

For Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1, the themes emerging from the Mass readings are:

  1. The Importance of Faith and Obedience: The First Reading from Hebrews emphasizes the necessity of uniting faith with hearing the Good News. It serves as a caution against the disobedience shown by the ancestors in the desert, highlighting the need for vigilance in our spiritual journey. The theme here is about being attentive to God’s word and actively living it out, contrasting the fate of those who heard but did not believe.
  2. The Legacy of Faith: The Responsorial Psalm, Psalm 78, focuses on the significance of passing down the teachings and mighty acts of the Lord through generations. This theme speaks to the responsibility of each generation to nurture and transmit faith, learning from the mistakes of the past and aiming to build a more faithful and obedient community.
  3. The Power of Jesus and Faith in Action: The Gospel from Mark showcases a powerful narrative of faith, forgiveness, and healing. The faith of the friends who brought the paralytic to Jesus, and Jesus’ subsequent actions, embody themes of determination, the transformative power of faith, and the authority of Jesus. This passage not only illustrates Jesus’ ability to heal physical ailments but also his divine authority to forgive sins.
  4. Community and Support in Faith: The Gospel story also underscores the theme of community support in faith. The friends of the paralyzed man go to great lengths to ensure he meets Jesus, reflecting how our faith communities should support and uplift each other, especially in times of need or spiritual paralysis.
  5. Witnessing God’s Wonders and Responding with Praise: The awe and praise from the witnesses to Jesus’ miracle in the Gospel reflect a theme of recognizing God’s work in our lives and responding with gratitude and praise. This ties back to the Psalm, where remembering and speaking of God’s deeds is an act of worship and faith transmission.

In the context of a liturgical setting, these themes for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1 can enrich homilies, reflections, or discussions, providing a multi-faceted view of faith’s dynamics: its challenges, its communal aspect, its power to transform, and the importance of active participation in God’s plan.

Thoughts for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1

On this Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1, we are invited to reflect deeply on the Gospel of Mark 2:1-12, where the actions of Jesus Christ reveal the profound intersections of faith, forgiveness, and healing. This narrative, enriched by the context of the First Reading from Hebrews and the Responsorial Psalm, offers us a tapestry of insights into the nature of our relationship with God.

In Capernaum, amidst a cramped and bustling scene, we witness an extraordinary act of faith. Four men, undeterred by the obstacles before them, are driven by the belief that Jesus can heal their paralyzed friend. Their actions are not just a testament to their determination but also a vibrant illustration of faith in action. In their refusal to be hindered by physical barriers, we see a metaphor for the spiritual perseverance called for in Hebrews 4:1-5, 11. Just as the Israelites in the desert were admonished for their lack of faith, here, faith is strikingly visible and active.

The lowering of the paralyzed man through the roof to Jesus’ feet is a scene of profound trust and hope. When Jesus first addresses the man, He does not immediately heal his physical paralysis but instead forgives his sins. This moment is pivotal – it underscores the primacy of spiritual healing and reconciliation with God, which is the core of Jesus’ mission. The scribes’ silent accusations of blasphemy highlight a critical misunderstanding of Jesus’ identity and authority, a theme echoed in the call to obedience and faith in both the First Reading and the Psalm.

Jesus’ response to the scribes is not just a vindication of His authority but also a revelation of His divinity. By healing the paralytic, He visibly demonstrates that He has the power to forgive sins, a power that belongs to God alone. This miracle is not just for the benefit of the paralyzed man but also for all present, and by extension, for all of us. It invites us to recognize and accept Jesus’ divine authority and to understand the interconnectedness of physical and spiritual well-being.

The Responsorial Psalm, Psalm 78, calls us to remember and narrate the mighty acts of the Lord. In the Gospel story, the witnesses are left in awe, glorifying God for what they had seen. This awe is a response we are called to emulate. As we recall and share the wonders of God’s work in our lives and in the lives of others, we participate in the ongoing story of faith, a story that spans generations and continues to inspire and transform.

The readings for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1 collectively urge us to a faith that is active and persistent, a faith that seeks not only physical well-being but, more importantly, spiritual reconciliation and wholeness. They call us to be part of a community that supports and uplifts one another in our journey towards God, reminding us that our faith, while personal, is also deeply communal. In our daily lives, let us strive to emulate the faith of the four friends, bringing ourselves and others to Jesus, confident in His power to heal and transform.

Prayer

Lord Jesus, grant us faith like the four friends in Capernaum, to persevere in bringing ourselves and others to You, trusting in Your power to heal and forgive. Strengthen our community in love and unity. Amen.

Homilies and Reflections for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1

Word on Fire: Only God Can Forgive Sins

In his reflection for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1, Bishop Robert Barron focuses on the Gospel scene where Jesus forgives the sins of the paralytic. The Pharisees accuse Jesus of blasphemy, as only God can forgive sins. Bishop Barron highlights this reaction as an inadvertent acknowledgment of Jesus’ divine nature. He references G.K. Chesterton’s view on the impact of the Incarnation doctrine, suggesting that the very claim that God became human requires a radical rethinking of our understanding of both God and the world. Thus, the Pharisees’ response unwittingly affirms the profound truth of the Gospel.

USCCB Reflection: Astounded

In the USCCB video reflection for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1, the focus is on Jesus’ healing ministry. It emphasizes that Jesus’ power to heal, as seen in the Gospel’s account of the paralytic man, was not limited to His time but continues today through the Church’s sacraments. This healing extends beyond physical ailments, offering reconciliation and restoration in mind, body, and spirit, thus continuing Jesus’ mission of bringing humanity back to God. The reflection encourages believers to see the sacraments as ongoing channels of Jesus’ healing power and to pray for those in need of healing.

Frequently Asked Questions for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1

What date is Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1?

The next date is Friday January 17, 2025.

Cycle 1 is used in odd numbered years and Cycle 2 is used in even numbered years. The gospel is the same for both years. For even numbered years see Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 2.

What are the Mass readings for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1?

The Mass readings for Friday January 17, 2025 are:
First Reading (Cycle 1) – Hebrews 4:1-5, 11: Urgency to Enter God’s Rest
Responsorial Psalm (Cycle 1) – Psalm 78: Teaching Future Generations
Gospel – Mark 2:1-12: Healing and Authority Demonstrated

What is the main theme of the First Reading from Hebrews 4:1-5, 11 for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1?

The main theme is the importance of uniting faith with hearing the Word of God and being vigilant to enter God’s rest.

How does the Gospel for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1 demonstrate Jesus’ power to forgive sins?

In Mark 2:1-12, Jesus forgives the sins of a paralyzed man, showcasing His divine authority to both forgive sins and heal physical ailments.

Why is Psalm 78 significant in the liturgy for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1?

Psalm 78 emphasizes the responsibility to pass down God’s teachings and acts, encouraging future generations to trust and obey God.

What lesson about faith can we learn from the Gospel reading on Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1?

The story of the four men who bring their paralyzed friend to Jesus teaches us about the persistence and action-oriented nature of true faith.

How are the readings for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1 interconnected?

These readings collectively underscore the themes of faith, obedience, the power of God’s word, and the transformative impact of Jesus’ teachings and actions.

What is the response expected from believers after hearing the readings on Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1?

Believers are encouraged to actively live out their faith, being vigilant in obedience and trust in God, inspired by the Gospel message.

What role does community play in the Gospel story for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1?

The community plays a crucial role, as seen in the friends of the paralytic who go to great lengths to bring him to Jesus, symbolizing the supportive nature of a faith community.

How can Christians today apply the message from the First Reading on Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1?

Christians are called to remain vigilant in their faith, avoiding the pattern of disobedience of the ancestors, and actively engaging with God’s word.

What is the significance of Jesus healing the paralytic in Mark 2:1-12 for Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1?

This act signifies Jesus’ authority over physical and spiritual ailments, reinforcing the belief in His divine power and role as the Messiah.

How can the faithful use the lessons from Psalm 78 on Friday of the 1st Week in Ordinary Time Cycle 1 in their daily lives?

By committing to pass down the teachings and experiences of faith to future generations, ensuring a legacy of trust and obedience in God.

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