Today is Wednesday the 23rd of November, in the 34th week of Ordinary time.
Bifrost Arts sing, ‘O God Will You Restore Us?’
O God, will You restore us, and grant us Your salvation?
I will hear what God proclaims
The Lord our God proclaims peace
Kindness and truth shall meet
Justice and peace shall kiss
“Here is the fast I choose –
To loosen the bonds of the oppressed and break their chains
Let righteousness and justice go out before you
Then you will call out and I will hear”
Near indeed is His salvation to those who call on Him
He will incline is ear and hear their prayers
Truth shall spring out of the earth
and Justice will rain down from heaven
The Lord will guide you on a righteous path
His vindication will shine down forth as the dawn
Your people will be called repairers of broken walls
making straight the path to proclaim His reign!
Today’s reading is from the Gospel of Luke
‘But before all this occurs, they will arrest you and persecute you; they will hand you over to synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors because of my name. This will give you an opportunity to testify. So make up your minds not to prepare your defence in advance; for I will give you words and a wisdom that none of your opponents will be able to withstand or contradict. You will be betrayed even by parents and brothers, by relatives and friends; and they will put some of you to death. You will be hated because of my name. But not a hair of your head will perish. By your endurance you will gain your souls.
In these weeks leading up to Advent, the readings are sober in tone. The community that received this gospel of Luke faced hostility from outside. Sometimes persecution was fierce. They were comforted by the example of Jesus. We remember his endurance with them.
We can all think of people today who are hated and at risk because they are courageously putting their faith into action. What’s your prayer for them?
Listen again and hear the tone of Jesus as he speaks to his disciples . . .
Don’t we all have a lot to endure? What do you need from this Jesus to help you to persevere with hope in your heart? Ask him for what you need.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.