The Lord's Day At Home

If you are housebound or self-isolating at this time, please use these prayers to unite yourself with the worship of the Universal Church, and your own Parish, this Sunday. If alone, read or say these prayers quietly to yourself. If with another, or in a family, someone should read the Gospel, and others respond. It might be suitable to find a special, quiet place at home for your Sunday prayers.

Gospel John 1:35-42

As John stood with two of his disciples, Jesus passed, and John stared hard at him and said, ‘Look, there is the lamb of God.’ Hearing this, the two disciples followed Jesus. Jesus turned round, saw them following and said, ‘What do you want?’ They answered, ‘Rabbi,’ – which means Teacher – ‘where do you live?’ ‘Come and see’ he replied; so they went and saw where he lived, and stayed with him the rest of that day. It was about the tenth hour. One of these two who became followers of Jesus after hearing what John had said was Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter. Early next morning, Andrew met his brother and said to him, ‘We have found the Messiah’ – which means the Christ – and he took Simon to Jesus. Jesus looked hard at him and said, ‘You are Simon son of John; you are to be called Cephas’ – meaning Rock.

Reflection

If you read through today’s Gospel again, you will notice that there is a lot of “staring and seeing” going on! John the Baptist “stares hard” at Jesus, and later Jesus does the same to Simon Peter. The somewhat diffident request of the disciples when Jesus sees them is met simply with the words “Come and see!” There is a gentle, almost enigmatic feeling to this “calling” – it is very unthreatening, almost non-committal. In the modern Catholic programme for prospective converts (the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, or RCIA) the first “phase” is called the Period of Enquiry, or searching, or indeed “looking hard and seeing.” It acknowledges that conversion or commitment is not something that always happens in a blinding flash but is gradual and tentative. We must practice the same gentleness as we proclaim our faith to others – never badgering or insisting but inviting. “Where do you go to church?” “Come and see!” “How do you pray?” “Come and see!” Perhaps today have a think about how we invite others to “Come and see” what our faith is all about. Have you ever invited someone to come to church with you, or pray with you – without being threatening or overpowering? Let us pray for the confidence to share our faith with patience and allow people to “look hard and see” what inspires us.