Readings: Friday, July 31, 2015

First Reading

First Reading: Leviticus  23:1, 4-11, 15-16, 27, 34b-37

The Lord said to Moses, 
          "These are the festivals of the Lord which you shall celebrate 
          at their proper time with a sacred assembly. 
The Passover of the Lord falls on the fourteenth day of the first month, 
          at the evening twilight. 
The fifteenth day of this month is the Lord's feast of Unleavened Bread. 
For seven days you shall eat unleavened bread. 
On the first of these days you shall hold a sacred assembly 
          and do no sort of work. 
On each of the seven days you shall offer an oblation to the Lord. 
Then on the seventh day you shall again hold a sacred assembly 
          and do no sort of work." 
The Lord said to Moses, "Speak to the children of Israel and tell them: 
          When you come into the land which I am giving you, 
          and reap your harvest, 
          you shall bring a sheaf of the first fruits of your harvest 
          to the priest, who shall wave the sheaf before the Lord 
          that it may be acceptable for you. 
On the day after the sabbath the priest shall do this. 
"Beginning with the day after the sabbath, 
          the day on which you bring the wave-offering sheaf, 
          you shall count seven full weeks, 
          and then on the day after the seventh week, the fiftieth day, 
          you shall present the new cereal offering to the Lord. 
"The tenth of this seventh month is the Day of Atonement, 
          when you shall hold a sacred assembly and mortify yourselves 
          and offer an oblation to the Lord. 
"The fifteenth day of this seventh month is the Lord's feast of Booths, 
          which shall continue for seven days. 
On the first day there shall be a sacred assembly, 
          and you shall do no sort of work. 
For seven days you shall offer an oblation to the Lord, 
          and on the eighth day you shall again hold a sacred assembly 
          and offer an oblation to the Lord. 
On that solemn closing you shall do no sort of work. 
"These, therefore, are the festivals of the Lord 
          on which you shall proclaim a sacred assembly, 
          and offer as an oblation to the Lord burnt offerings and cereal offerings, 
          sacrifices and libations, as prescribed for each day."

Responsorial Psalm

Responsorial Psalm: Ps 81:3-4, 5-6, 10-11ab

R./  Sing with joy to God our help.

Take up a melody, and sound the timbrel, 
          the pleasant harp and the lyre. 
Blow the trumpet at the new moon, 
          at the full moon, on our solemn feast. 
R./  Sing with joy to God our help.

For it is a statute in Israel, 
          an ordinance of the God of Jacob, 
Who made it a decree for Joseph 
          when he came forth from the land of Egypt. 
R./  Sing with joy to God our help.

There shall be no strange god among you 
          nor shall you worship any alien god. 
I, the Lord, am your God 
          who led you forth from the land of Egypt. 
R./  Sing with joy to God our help.

Holy Gospel

Introduction to Gospel Reading

Jesus is not welcome either among his people, in his town, his home country, for he is disturbing people's consciences. He confronts them with the challenging reality of God and his ways. Christ shakes his people from their security in laws and outward practices. How dare he, one from their own town and street? Who does he think he is? Dare we to be the prophet's voice needed today? Dare we to be unconventional?

Gospel Reading: Matthew 13:54-58

        Jesus went to his hometown and taught the people in their synagogue. They were amazed and said, "Where did he get this wisdom and these special powers? Isn't he the carpenter's son? Isn't Mary his mother and aren't James, Joseph, Simon and Judas his brothers? Aren't all his sisters living here? How did he get all this?" And so they took offense at him.

 Jesus said to them, "The only place where prophets are not welcome is their hometown and in their own family." And he did not perform many miracles there because of their lack of faith.