This Week’s Liturgy Calendar.
Ordinary Season of the Year. (a)
Weekdays – Year 1
Sunday 25th June: Twelfth Sunday of the Year. (a)
In the first reading, from the Prophet Jeremiah, the knowledge that God was with him enabled Jeremiah to remain faithful to his difficult task as a prophet.
St. Paul, in the second reading from the Letter to the Romans, draws a contrast between Christ and Adam. Sin came into the world but grace comes through Jesus Christ.
In the Gospel, Jesus urges his disciples to witness to the Gospel openly and fearlessly, assuring them of God’s special care and support in the difficulties and trials they would have to face.
Monday 26th June: Monday of the twelfth week of the year.
This week we begin the history of God’s dealings with the Chosen People. They were descended from Abraham. Today we hear of the call of Abram, as he was originally known. Even though advanced in years, he is called to be the father of a great nation.
Jesus tells us that it is very important not to judge one another – very often, we are the ones who need to be judged and corrected.
Tuesday 27th June: Monday of the twelfth week of the year.
Abram is again promised many descendants who will take up their abode in the land of the Canaanites. We learn that he was a peaceful man, trying to avoid falling out with Lot, his travelling companion.
Jesus reminds us that we should treat others as we would like to be treated ourselves. He reminds us that this will not always be easy.
Wednesday 28th June: Memorial of St. Iraneus.
Iraneus is one of the most important fathers of the early Church. He was born around 125 in Asia Minor. He is said to have been a disciple of St. Polycarp who is turn was a disciple of St. John the Apostle. This shows how close in time Iraneus is to the early days of the Church. He became Bishop of Lyons and combated the heresies of his day. He died in 202.
Thursday 29th June: Solemnity of St. Peter and St. Paul.
We know from the Gospels that Peter was from Galilee, that his brother was Andrew, that he was married and that he was a fisherman. He is portrayed as a very impetuous man e.g. he said he would never betray Jesus. On the other hand, he was a man of great faith and determination. He was martyred in Rome in 64.
Paul, who was originally known as Saul, came from Tarsus and was brought up as a very strict Jew. He was also a Roman citizen. He was as scrupulous upholder of the Law and joined the Pharisees, becoming a ferocious persecutor of the early Christians. After his conversion experience on the road to Damascus, he became an very committed Christian, setting off on various missionary journeys. His story is found in the Acts of the Apostles and in the various letters he wrote to the early Christian communities. Tradition tells us he was martyred in Rome in 67.
Friday 30th June: Friday of the 12th week of the year.
As a sign of the covenant he is establishing with his people Abram’s name is changed to Abraham and his wife’s name to Sarah. She would, in due course, give birth to a son who would be circumcised as a further sign of the Covenent.
In the Gospel, we hear how Jesus cures the leper who has faith in him. He also tells him to obey the laws of his religion and so he has to go and show himself to the priests to have his cure confirmed.
Saturday 1st July: Saturday of the twelfth week of the year.
Both Abraham, whose name has now been changed, as a sign of the Covenant and Sarah laughed when a stranger, later found to be an angel, said she would have a child within a year. With God, nothing is impossible.
We are given a great example of faith. Jesus cures the centurion’s servant and goes on to demonstrate his healing ministry.