Word of the day

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Friday of the First Week in Ordinary Time

Reading of the day

A reading from the Letter of St. Paul to the Hebrews
Heb 4: 1-6

Let us be on our guard
while the promise of entering into his rest remains,
that none of you seem to have failed.
For in fact we have received the Good News just as our ancestors did.
But the word that they heard did not profit them,
for they were not united in faith with those who listened.
For we who believed enter into that rest,
just as he has said:

As I swore in my wrath,    
“They shall not enter into my rest,”

and yet his works were accomplished
at the foundation of the world.
For he has spoken somewhere about the seventh day in this manner,
And God rested on the seventh day from all his works;
and again, in the previously mentioned place,
They shall not enter into my rest. 

Therefore, let us strive to enter into that rest,
so that no one may fall after the same example of disobedience.

Gospel of the day

From the Gospel according to Mark
Mk 2:1-12

When Jesus returned to Capernaum after some days,
it became known that he was at home.
Many gathered together so that there was no longer room for them,
not even around the door,
and he preached the word to them.
They came bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men.
Unable to get near Jesus because of the crowd,
they opened up the roof above him.
After they had broken through,
they let down the mat on which the paralytic was lying.
When Jesus saw their faith, he said to him,
“Child, your sins are forgiven.”
Now some of the scribes were sitting there asking themselves,
“Why does this man speak that way? He is blaspheming.
Who but God alone can forgive sins?”
Jesus immediately knew in his mind what
they were thinking to themselves,
so he said, “Why are you thinking such things in your hearts?
Which is easier, to say to the paralytic,
‘Your sins are forgiven,’
or to say, ‘Rise, pick up your mat and walk’?
But that you may know
that the Son of Man has authority to forgive sins on earth”
–he said to the paralytic,
“I say to you, rise, pick up your mat, and go home.”
He rose, picked up his mat at once,
and went away in the sight of everyone.
They were all astounded
and glorified God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this.”

Words of the Holy Father

Physical health is a gift that we must guard. But the Lord teaches us that we must also guard the health of the heart, spiritual health. There is a word here from Jesus that will perhaps help us: "Son, your sins are forgiven." Are we used to thinking about this medicine of forgiveness of our sins, of our mistakes? We ask ourselves: "Do I have to ask God's forgiveness for something?" Yes, yes, in general, we are all sinners. And so it becomes watered down and loses its strength, this power of prophecy that Jesus has when He gets down to the essentials. And today Jesus says, to each one of us, "I want to forgive you your sins." It is a simple thing that Jesus teaches us when He gets down to the essentials. The essential is the health of everything: of body and soul. We guard well the health of the body, but also that of the soul. And we go to that Physician who can heal us, who can forgive sins. Jesus came for this, He gave His life for this. (Santa Marta, 17 January 2020)