Today is the feast day of St Luke, the evangelist. Here is the Bishops’ website commentary followed by the readings.
Gospel Reflection Wednesday, Saint Luke, evangelist Luke 10:1-9
One of Paul’s co-workers was a man called Luke. He is mentioned in this morning’s first reading. It was the view of the early church that this particular Luke was the author of the gospel we now call Luke’s gospel and author of the Acts of the Apostles. This particular evangelist wrote a two volume work. It seems that the story of the early church was as important to him as the story of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. In fact, he saw the story of Jesus continuing on into the story of the early church, because, for Luke, it was the same Jesus of Nazareth, now risen Lord, who continued to work in and through the church. Paul was in prison when he wrote the letter from which we read this morning, the second letter to Timothy. He has a sense of himself as coming towards the end of his life, ‘I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith’. At this vulnerable time in his life, it seems that he felt very alone, just as Jesus must have felt as he came towards the end of his life. Indeed, he says in today’s first reading, ‘Only Luke is with me’. Luke alone was faithful to him to the end. Yet, Paul also goes on to say, ‘The Lord stood by me and gave me power’. Paul experienced the Lord’s presence in and through Luke’s faithfulness. Luke’s fidelity was a reflection of the Lord’s faithfulness. Whenever we stand by others when they are vulnerable, we reveal something of the Lord’s faithful and reliable love to them. We show ourselves to be true labourers in the Lord’s harvest, in the language of today’s gospel reading.
The Gospel reflection comes from WEEKDAY REFLECTIONS: To know the love of Christ 2016/2017 by Martin Hogan published by The Messenger c/f www.messenger.ie
A reading from the Second letter of St Paul to Timothy 4:10-17
Only Luke is with me.
Demas has deserted me for love of this life and gone to Thessalonika, Crescens has gone to Galatia and Titus to Dalmatia; only Luke is with me. Get Mark to come and bring him with you; I find him a useful helper in my work. I have sent Tychicus to Ephesus. When you come, bring the cloak I left with Carpus in Troas, and the scrolls, especially the parchment ones. Alexander the coppersmith has done me a lot of harm; the Lord will repay him for what he has done.
Be on your guard against him yourself, because he has been bitterly contesting everything that we say. The first time I had to present my defence, there was not a single witness to support me. Every one of them deserted me – may they not be held accountable for it. But the Lord stood by me and gave me power, so that through me the whole message might be proclaimed for all the pagans to hear; and so I was rescued from the lion’s mouth.
The Word of the Lord.
Responsorial Psalm Ps 144
Response Your friends, O Lord, shall make known the glorious splendour of your reign.
- All your creatures shall thank you, O Lord,
and your friends shall repeat their blessing.
They shall speak of the glory of your reign
and declare your might, O God. Response
2. They make known to men your mighty deeds
and the glorious splendour of your reign.
Yours is an everlasting kingdom;
your rule lasts from age to age. Response
- The Lord is just in all his ways
and loving in all his deeds.
He is close to all who call him,
who call on him from their hearts. Response
Gospel Acclamation Jn 15: 16
I chose you from the world
to go out and to bear fruit,
fruit that will last, says the Lord.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke 10:1-9
‘The harvest is rich but the labourers are few’
The Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them out ahead of him, in pairs, to all the towns and places he himself was to visit. He said to them, ‘The harvest is rich but the labourers are few, so ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest. Start off now, but remember, I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. Carry no purse, no haversack, no sandals. Salute no one on the road. Whatever house you go into, let your first words be, “Peace to this house!” And if a man of peace lives there, your peace will go and rest on him; if not, it will come back to you. Stay in the same house, taking what food and drink they have to offer, for the labourer deserves his wages; do not move from house to house.
Whenever you go into a town where they make you welcome, eat what is set before you. Cure those in it who are sick, and say, “The kingdom of God is very near to you”.
The Gospel of the Lord.