Second Reading for the 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B

Ephesians 5:21-32 or 5:2A, 25-32

Summary: Christ's love guides marital roles: wives respecting husbands as the church respects Christ, and husbands loving wives as Christ loves the church, symbolizing unity and sanctity.

Love and Respect in Marriage

Brothers and sisters:
[Live in love, as Christ loved us.]

[Be subordinate to one another out of reverence for Christ. Wives should be subordinate to their husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is head of his wife just as Christ is head of the church, he himself the savior of the body. As the church is subordinate to Christ, so wives should be subordinate to their husbands in everything.]

Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ loved the church and handed himself over for her to sanctify her, cleansing her by the bath of water with the word, that he might present to himself the church in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.

So also husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one hates his own flesh but rather nourishes and cherishes it, even as Christ does the church, because we are members of his body.

For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.

This is a great mystery, but I speak in reference to Christ and the church.

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