February 15th, 2015 – Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year B

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Today’s Entrance Antiphon sets the tone for our Sunday Eucharist: “Lead me, guide me, for the sake of your name.” In each moment, the liturgy points out just how God answers that prayer as we journey life’s road.

Our first help, of course, is the gift of God’s wisdom, found in Scripture. Our lives are to reflect that wisdom, and so we ask always “to become a dwelling -pleasing to you” (Collect). Saint Paul has some practical advice for wise living: “Avoid giving offense, whether to the Jews or the Greeks or the church of God” – basically anyone – and “do everything for the glory of God” (Second Reading).

Not surprisingly, it is Jesus who offers the greatest challenge. When a man with leprosy approaches him for help, Jesus not only offers healing but restoration, returning the man to this community: “Go, show yourself to the priest” (Gospel). In doing so, Jesus overcomes a mere human “wisdom,” one that isolated those with leprosy from the community for fear of the disease’s spread (First Reading). Though we might like to claim that the human desire to quarantine is a thing of the past, we know better.

Today’s liturgy asks much of us: reflect God’s wisdom; offend no one; glorify God in everything; reach out and restore those cast out. Perhaps, however, we can be encouraged by a paraphrase of today’s entrance antiphon, the spiritual “Lead Me, Guide Me”: “Lead me, guide me, along the way, for if you lead me, I cannot stray. Lord, let me walk each day with thee. Lead me, O Lord, lead me.”