Theme: GOD CALLS US TO BE HIS APOSTLES. IT IS ALL THE GRACE OF GOD
- Isaiah 6:1-8;
- Psalm 137 (138): 1-5. 7-8. R/ v. 1;
- 1 Corinthians 15:1-11 (3-8. 11)
- Luke 5:1-11
1. Today is the 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C. The readings today tell us that God calls us to be his apostles! It is all the grace of God!
The gospel today tells us of the call of Peter and the first disciples. After the miraculous catch of fish, Peter fell at the knees of Jesus and told Jesus to leave him, because he was a sinner, but instead of leaving him, Jesus called him to be his apostle! It is all the grace of God! The grace of God does not only save us from sin, but it calls us to be apostles to save others from sin! In front of this grace of God, Peter and the other disciples responded immediately and totally. (Faley) They left everything and followed him!
The gospel today also tells us that the mission of the apostles will be very fruitful and successful because it is the work of God and not the work of man! The gospel tells us that the disciples worked all night but caught nothing, but at the command of Jesus they put out their nets and they caught so many fish that their nets began to tear. And when they filled their two boats with the fish, the two boats were almost sinking! Again, the grace of God does not only save us from sin, but it calls us to be apostles to save others from sin, and it makes our mission fruitful and successful!
2. The first reading follows the theme of the gospel. The first reading tells us about the call of Isaiah. Again, in front of the holiness of God, Isaiah recognized his sinfulness, but more importantly, the first reading tells us that God purified Isaiah from his sins with a burning coal from the altar and called Isaiah to be his prophet! Again, in front of this grace of God, Isaiah responded immediately and totally: “Here I am, send me.”! (Is 6:8/SM)
3. The responsorial psalm follows the theme of the first reading. The responsorial psalm is a thanksgiving psalm. Thus the response of the responsorial psalm:
“Before the angels I will bless you, O Lord.” (Ps 137 (138): 1/SM)
To bless God is to praise and thank God!
The responsorial psalm has four stanzas. The first and second stanzas thank God for deliverance. The third stanza calls the nations to thank and praise God. And the fourth stanza expresses confidence and trust in God! (HCSB/Craghan)
4. The shorter form of the second reading (1 Co 15:3-8. 11) does not follow the theme of the Sunday. In the shorter form of the second reading Saint Paul tells the Corinthians to believe in the Resurrection! Some Corinthians do not believe in the Resurrection!
St. Paul tells the Corinthians to believe in the Resurrection because it is the teaching and tradition of the Church! St. Paul tells the Corinthians to believe in the Resurrection because it has been witnessed by Peter (Cephas), the Twelve Apostles, the more than five hundred brothers at the same time, James, the other apostles besides the Twelve, and St. Paul himself!
Incidentally, the longer form of the second reading (1 Co 15:1-11) follows the theme of the Sunday. The longer form of the second reading tells us that St. Paul was the least of the apostles. In fact he did not deserve to be an apostle because he persecuted the Christians. But because of the grace of God he became an apostle and because of the grace of God he was the most hard working of the apostles! Thus we read in the longer form of the second reading:
“I am the least of the apostles; in fact, since I persecuted the Church of God, I hardly deserve the name apostle; but by God’s grace that is what I am, and the grace that he gave me has not been fruitless. On the contrary, I, or rather the grace of God that is with me, have worked harder than any of the others.” (1 Co 15: 9-10/SM)
5. Today in the Eucharist, we celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and we eat his body and drink his blood, and the Risen Lord will give us the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will help us become the apostles of the Lord to proclaim the good news of the resurrection of the Lord and the salvation of all humankind!