Gospel: Mark 4:1-20
On another occasion, Jesus began to teach by the sea.
A very large crowd gathered around him
so that he got into a boat on the sea and sat down.
And the whole crowd was beside the sea on land.
And he taught them at length in parables,
and in the course of his instruction he said to them,
“Hear this! A sower went out to sow.
And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path,
and the birds came and ate it up.
Other seed fell on rocky ground where it had little soil.
It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep.
And when the sun rose, it was scorched and it withered for lack of roots.
Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it
and it produced no grain.
And some seed fell on rich soil and produced fruit.
It came up and grew and yielded thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold.”
He added, “Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear.”
And when he was alone,
those present along with the Twelve
questioned him about the parables.
He answered them,
“The mystery of the Kingdom of God has been granted to you.
But to those outside everything comes in parables, so that they may look and see but not perceive,
and hear and listen but not understand,
in order that they may not be converted and be forgiven.”
Jesus said to them, “Do you not understand this parable?
Then how will you understand any of the parables?
The sower sows the word.
These are the ones on the path where the word is sown.
As soon as they hear, Satan comes at once
and takes away the word sown in them.
And these are the ones sown on rocky ground who,
when they hear the word, receive it at once with joy.
But they have no roots; they last only for a time.
Then when tribulation or persecution comes because of the word,
they quickly fall away.
Those sown among thorns are another sort.
They are the people who hear the word,
but worldly anxiety, the lure of riches,
and the craving for other things intrude and choke the word,
and it bears no fruit.
But those sown on rich soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it
and bear fruit thirty and sixty and a hundredfold.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
The Mass intention is for Jer Dowling RIP.
A friend once posted this beautiful poem on Facebook:
You may read me seven times
Or seventy times seven
And yet, your mind cannot conceive
The fullness which I give of heaven.
The more you search
The more you find,
The more you read,
The more you learn
God’s loving mind.
The Bible or Sacred Scriptures contains the Word of God. Indeed, as the poem above tells us, God’s Word is deep. If our hearts are like a path, rocky ground, or among thorns, it is unlikely for God’s Word to take root in us. However, if we are like that rich soil, God’s Word will bear fruit in us. Having a rich soil does not happen overnight. It must be patiently cultivated. For our hearts to be fertile, we need to keep on searching, finding, reading, and learning God’s loving mind. Our reading and hearing of God’s Word usually happen within our faith community through the liturgy. St Angela Merici, founder of the Ursuline sisters, wrote in her testament, “Be on your guard and especially take care to be of one heart and mind…There is only one sign that is pleasing to the Lord, that of loving and being united to one another.” May our constant search for God’s Word inspire us to live in solidarity with our brothers and sisters in need.
- What qualities do you have which would allow God’s Word to take root in you? In our parish?
- What qualities do you have which would prevent God’s Word to take root in you? In our parish?
- “Have hope and firm faith in God, for He will help you in everything.” (St Angela Merici) How do you protect the Word of God in your heart in times of tribulation or worldly anxiety?
Lord Jesus, thank You for Your Word today. Through the prayers and example of St Angela Merici, we present to You our poor hearts. Nurture them to receive Your Word so that we may become Your authentic evangelizers. Amen.