3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A

Published on 20 Jan 2020
A woman stands facing some light.

The Lord is my Light and my Help

Almighty and ever-living God,

direct our actions according to your good pleasure,

that in the name of your beloved Son

we may abound in good works

Pope Francis has designated today as the Sunday of the Word of God, when we are reminded that the Lord is in constant dialogue with his people through his Holy Word. Let us ask to hear the Lord and enter more deeply into relationship with him as we pray.

In the First Reading, Isaiah foretells of the Lord coming among his people, describing him as a light who will guide them through darkness, easing their burden and bringing them joy.

The Psalm continues the image of the light of the Lord giving us strength and helping us to overcome fear. Its words encourage us to seek the Lord and remain hopeful.

The Second Reading is a heartfelt call for unity, made to the early church in Corinth. It is a timely reminder for today’s Church that we are all united though the Good News we are called to proclaim. Christ is one and cannot be divided up: we are all one in him.

Isaiah’s ancient prophecy of the Messiah as a light in the darkness is repeated in today’s Gospel, where Matthew links it to the start of Jesus’s mission. On hearing that John the Baptist has been arrested, Jesus sets out and begins to preach, using the same call to repentance as John did. Just as John had gathered a small group of followers, so Jesus invites the first of his disciples.

As we pray, let’s remember that we, too, are called to follow Jesus. We do not pray alone, but belong to a community of believers united by our baptism. We share the same hope of which the psalmist sang, and are guided by the same light that Isaiah spoke of. May we seek and build the unity that Paul longed for.

The people that walked in darkness has seen a great light.    First Reading

Hope in him, hold firm and take heart. Hope in the Lord!     Psalm

Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.     Gospel

I am the light of the world, says the Lord;

the one who follows me will have the light of life.    Communion Antiphon

This week’s texts if you want to reflect further

Isaiah 8: 23–9:3; Ps. 26 (27); 1 Cor. 1:10–13:17; Matthew 4: 12–23