22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B

Published on 27 Aug 2018
A person eating with their hands

You must do what the Word tells you

God of might, giver of every good gift,

put into our hearts the love of your name,

so that, by deepening our sense of reverence,

you may nurture in us what is good

and, by your watchful care,

keep safe what you have nurtured.


After several weeks of reading St John’s Gospel, we return once more to hearing St Mark. The focus this week is on the Law, and the tensions that can exist between the Commandments of God as fulfilled in Jesus and human traditions.

Of course, in the first place the Law was a gift from God to help us show wisdom and understanding, leading to our own happiness (First Reading).

The Psalm describes the person who will live in the presence of God.

As God’s children we must accept and submit to his word, not just in what we say, but also in what we do (Second Reading).

However, if the Law becomes a God in itself and leads the follower to be obsessed with its human interpretations, then the focus is no longer on the Lord at the centre of our life, and a change of heart is needed (Gospel).

This week, then, we might want to pray particularly for a greater balance in our lives between the Lord and his Word and a legalistic approach to life and its man-made institutions.

God of might, giver of every good gift, put in my heart the love of your name. Collect

Lord, who shall dwell on your holy mountain? The one who walks without faults, acts with justice and speaks the truth from their heart.   Psalm
You must do what the Word tells you,

not just listen to it and deceive yourself.      Second Reading

It is from within, from one’s heart, that evil intentions emerge …[They] come from within and make one unclean.   Gospel
This week’s texts if you want to reflect further:

Deuteronomy 4: 1–2, 6–8; Psalm 14 (15);

James 1:17–18, 21–22, 27; Mark 7:1–8, 14–15. 21–23