Sunday 16 June 2024

Today is Sunday 16 June, beginning the 11th week of Ordinary Time.

The Kyiv Chamber Choir sings In Thy Kingdom from One Thousand Years Of Ukrainian Sacred Music.

(Lyrics currently unavailable)

Today’s reading is from the Gospel of Mark.

Mark 4: 26-34

He also said, ‘The kingdom of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground, and would sleep and rise night and day, and the seed would sprout and grow, he does not know how. The earth produces of itself, first the stalk, then the head, then the full grain in the head. But when the grain is ripe, at once he goes in with his sickle, because the harvest has come.’

He also said, ‘With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.’

With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it; he did not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything in private to his disciples.

In this passage, Jesus tells two stories about something called “the Kingdom of God”. What do you think this “Kingdom of God” is?

The two stories both talk about the astonishing process of growth - something that was perhaps more familiar to Jesus and his audience than it is to us. What is the point that these two stories make, do you think?

Why do you suppose it was that Jesus taught the crowds in parables, but “explained everything in private to his disciples”?

Now listen to the passage again. Ask yourself, “Is Jesus challenging me to do something here? What does he want me to do? Am I willing to do it?”

Finally sum up all that you have felt and thought in the last few minutes and offer it as a prayer to God the Father, or to Jesus, or to the Holy Spirit.

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.

Sunday, 16 June
11th week in Ordinary Time
00:00 -00:00