1st February - Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time (B)
Sunday Mass Readings
Canon Luke writes . . .
In last Sunday’s Gospel our Lord proclaimed: ‘the kingdom of God is at hand;’ as we continue to listen to the first chapter of St Mark’s Gospel we see that this is not just a vague hope, rather Christ comes with authority and power, mighty in words and deed. He undeniably asserts His dominion over the powers of evil.
It is interesting to note that St Mark describes these events as taking place on the Sabbath; the day given as sign of the covenant of God’s love; love for His creation (Exodus 31:12-17), a love that was powerfully revealed in the deliverance of His people Israel, from slavery (Deuteronomy 6:12-15). This Sabbath, Jesus ushers in God’s Kingdom, the new creation; He has come to bring deliverance to humanity, shattering Satan’s stranglehold on mankind, bring deliverance from the snares of evil and breaking forever the bonds of sin and death.
Jesus is the great prophet foretold by Moses in the First Reading. Although He is Lord of heaven and earth, He becomes one like us: ‘I will raise up a prophet like yourself for them, from their own brothers.’ He comes with dominion therefore not only over the external forces of chaos and evil, but over each of our lives. He wishes to make us ‘holy in body and spirit’, able to give ‘our undivided attention to the Lord’ as St Paul says in today’s Epistle.
Do we allow Christ to reign in our lives, or does human pride make us pull up the drawbridge of our hearts, dull our ears to His word, and make our eyes dim to the marvels of His works?
May the Lord’s teaching make a deep impression on us so that the light of salvation may dawn in our lives.
"...JESUS CHRIST, THE BEGINNING AND THE END...
ALL TIME BELONGS TO HIM... AND ALL THE AGES..."
These words on the doors of the Church porch express perfectly the purpose of our parish. We are
a community centred round the Lord Jesus.
Saint Francis' Parish in the heart of Maidstone was founded in 1859 and since then has been the heart of the Catholic community in the Maidstone area. From it was founded the parishes of Saint Thomas More, West Malling; Holy Family, Park Wood; and Saint Peter's Bearsted. In addition to the mother church there are Mass Centres at St Luke's, Preston Hall, and at St Mary's Anglican Church at Nettlestead.
Today the faith which inspired its foundation almost 150 years ago continues to find its expression in a lively community bringing together people of many races all united by their love of God. It is this love which calls us all to work together to build up our community and to care for all in need.
I would like to welcome all who visit our website and hope you share something of our vision for the future of the church and parish.
Canon Luke - Parish Priest
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