14th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
5 July 2020
O God, who in the abasement of your Son
have raised up a fallen world,
fill your faithful with holy joy,
for on those you have rescued from slavery to sin
you bestow eternal gladness.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Readings and Commentaries
Today we approach the middle section of Matthew’s gospel. We read one short passage from the two chapters (11 and 12) that lead from the Mission Sermon (10:1 – 11:1) to the Parable Sermon (13:1–53).
Fundamental aspects of the mystery of the divine and human Jesus are revealed to us today. Jesus’ ecstatic prayer offers us a precious insight into his loving communion with the Father. This heavenward gaze is complemented by the open arms of an earthly embrace: “Come to me, all you who labour and are overburdened”. In accordance with the vision of the prophet Zechariah, Jesus comes among us as a humble man of peace, not as a warrior king.
We are enabled to live like Jesus – in peaceful communion with God and with one another – because we possess the Spirit of God. As Paul taught the Romans, “the Spirit of God has made his home in you”. We remain flesh-and-blood human beings but enlivened by the Spirit “who raised Jesus from the dead”.
A reading from the prophet Zechariah 9:9–10
The Lord says this:
‘Rejoice heart and soul, daughter of Zion!
Shout with gladness, daughter of Jerusalem!
See now, your king comes to you;
he is victorious, he is triumphant,
humble and riding on a donkey,
on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
He will banish chariots from Ephraim
and horses from Jerusalem;
the bow of war will be banished.
He will proclaim peace for the nations.
His empire shall stretch from sea to sea,
from the River to the ends of the earth.’
Responsorial Psalm Ps 144:1–2, 8–11, 13–14
R. I will praise your name for ever, my king and my God.
I will give you glory, O God my King,
I will bless your name for ever.
I will bless you day after day
and praise your name for ever. R.
The Lord is kind and full of compassion,
slow to anger, abounding in love.
How good is the Lord to all,
compassionate to all his creatures. R.
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. R.
The Lord is faithful in all his words
and loving in all his deeds.
The Lord supports all who fall
and raises all who are bowed down. R.
A reading from the letter of St Paul to the Romans 8:9, 11–13
Your interests are not in the unspiritual, but in the spiritual, since the Spirit of God has made his home in you. In fact, unless you possessed the Spirit of Christ you would not belong to him, and if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, then he who raised Jesus from the dead will give life to your own mortal bodies through his Spirit living in you.
So then, my brothers, there is no necessity for us to obey our unspiritual selves or to live unspiritual lives. If you do live in that way, you are doomed to die; but if by the Spirit you put an end to the misdeeds of the body you will live.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew 11:25–30
Jesus exclaimed, ‘I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and of earth, for hiding these things from the learned and the clever and revealing them to mere children. Yes, Father, for that is what it pleased you to do. Everything has been entrusted to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, just as no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.
‘Come to me, all you who labour and are overburdened, and I will give you rest. Shoulder my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Yes, my yoke is easy and my burden light.’
Almighty and all-merciful God, lover of the human race, healer of all our wounds, in whom there is no shadow of death, save us in this time of crisis; grant wisdom and courage to our leaders; watch over all medical people as they tend the sick and work for a cure; stir in us a sense of solidarity beyond all isolation; if our doors are closed, let our hearts be open. By the power of your love destroy the virus of fear, that hope may never die and the light of Easter, the triumph of life, may shine upon us and the whole world. Through Jesus Christ, the Lord risen from the dead, who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Holy Mary, health of the sick, pray for us. St Joseph, guardian of us all, pray for us. (Most Rev. Mark Coleridge, Archbishop of Brisbane)
Gracious God, We give thanks anew for your providence and presence. We prayerfully seek your grace, amidst COVID-19 here and overseas. We pray for those in need of healing. We pray for your peace with those who are anxious or grieving. We pray you will continue to strengthen and sustain all those who are serving in response. We pray for your Holy Spirit’s discernment amidst the many choices and decisions facing our national, community and medical leaders. We pray we each might see quickly what more we can do to help those who are vulnerable. This prayer for our nation in the family of nations, with all that is on our hearts, we gather now and pray through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
(Ecumenical prayer from the National Council of Churches. We have been invited to pray this prayer at 7pm each day.)