Third Sunday of Ordinary Time (A)
He went and settled in Capernaum: in this way the prophecy of Isaiah was to be fulfilled.
The Word this Week
We will spend most of the Sundays of the coming year in the company of Saint Matthew. His Gospel (like the others has its own characteristics. He is writing for a Jewish audience, and so is always at pains to stress one thing: that Jesus of Nazareth was the promised Messiah. He does this by reference to Jesus teaching and miracles, and very often by quoting the prophecies of the Old Testament to show that Jesus was their fulfilment. Today is a perfect example. Zebulun and Naphthali was an old name for the area round Capernaum by the side of the Lake of Galilee, a busy fishing and trading area, with many Gentile towns and settlements: it is here, rather than in the dangerous town of Nazareth, that Jesus settles and begins his ministry. This is where the proclamation of the
Notes for Readers
When using the Lectionary, you will notice a line under the Scripture reference. This (which is not meant to be read aloud) is a guide, to help reader and preacher understand why this passage is being proclaimed. Normally it is a quotation from the reading itself, but sometimes (like today) it is amplified, to make the meaning clear. The link between first reading and Gospel is absolutely explicit today (given that Saint Matthew quotes half of it). Your role as reader is not necessarily to make the link (thats for the preacher to do!), but simply to proclaim the prophecy. Imagine that you are back in the eighth century BC, talking about something still to come: people need to hear these words, so that when Gods brings his light into the world people will be able to recognise it. Then, in a few moments, when people hear the Gospel reading, the link will be made! Make sure you emphasise the words In the days to come at the beginning of the reading. Also, announce this as Good News, with a lightness and joy in your voice.
Paul rolls his sleeves up and, after last weeks introduction, gets straight down to business! There was a serious problem in