Written by Sunnie Lain, Director of Conferences and Community Outreach.
THE BAPTISM OF THE LORD
January 8, 2018
Gospel: (Mark 1: 7-11)
This is what John the Baptist proclaimed: “One mightier than I is coming after me. I am not worthy to stoop and loosen the thongs of his sandals. I have baptized you with water; he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” It happened in those days that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized in the Jordan by John. On coming up out of the water he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit, like a dove, descending upon him. And a voice came from the heavens, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”
Baptism is not something that happened in the past, an event over and done with. None of us has “been baptized”; we are all being baptized. Baptism plunges us into an ongoing way of living whereby our lives are patterned after Christ’s. John’s baptism was one of repentance , “turning from, turning toward.” At his baptism Jesus turned from his private life to his public life and mission. John baptized with water but Jesus baptized with the Holy Spirit who is the source of power for his mission. With the indwelling of the Holy Spirit we become adopted sons and daughters of God, God’s “beloved,” too. By this indwelling, Jesus’ mission is our own mission. Jesus’ way of living is our own way of living. (Living Liturgy, p.36)
Our Mission Statement tells us: Inspired by Gospel values, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, a Catholic lay organization, leads women and men to join together to grow spiritually by offering person-to-person service to those who are needy and suffering in the tradition of its founder, Blessed Frederic Ozanam, and patron, St. Vincent de Paul.
Discussion: (Share your thoughts after a moment of silence)
How has the mission of Jesus become our mission, Jesus’ way of living our way of living?
The heavens are opened and the Spirit of God comes to rest upon Jesus,
-Spirit of God, rest upon us
For all who have been baptized by water and the Holy Spirit,
-may we join together to grow spiritually
Christ, the Anointed, you began your public ministry after your baptism,
-may we offer person-to-person service to the suffering
Christ, the Beloved, you emptied yourself in love for the human family,
-open our hearts to the poorest and most abandoned in the
spirit of St. Vincent and Blessed Frederic. Amen