The Baptism of the Lord Year C

Published on 07 Jan 2019
The Baptism of the Lord by Giotto - John the Baptist baptising Jesus while a dove appears above.

‘You are my Son, the Beloved; my favour rests on you’

Almighty ever-living God, who, when Christ had been baptized in the River Jordan

and as the Holy Spirit descended upon him, solemnly declared him your beloved Son,

grant that your children by adoption, reborn of water and the Holy Spirit, may always be well pleasing to you.

In today’s joyous readings we are reminded of God’s kindness, compassion and love for all mankind; so much so that he sent his beloved Son, and poured out the ongoing gift of his creative Spirit upon us to redeem us.

The First Reading offers words of consolation and hope to God’s people in exile. The Lord comes with power to restore and protect his people, like a shepherd who guides and nourishes them.

The Psalm is a meditation on the glories of God in creation, where he looks after all he has made. The psalmist also reminds us that God’s spirit is the spirit of life, rebirth and renewal.

Paul’s letter (Second Reading) tells us that through his life and his giving of himself, Jesus embodied the kindness and love of God. The life-giving gifts of the Holy Spirit were revealed and shared with all.

Today’s Gospel describes the descent of the Holy Spirit on Jesus whilst he was at prayer, emphasizing the importance of both the Spirit and of prayer in Jesus’s life.

This week, let us pray for an openness and understanding of what the Holy Spirit is offering us and asking of us.

He is like a shepherd feeding his flock, gathering lambs in his arms, holding them against his breast, and leading to their rest the mother ewes.       First Reading

You send forth your spirit, they are created; And you renew the face of the earth.      Psalm

Christ Jesus sacrificed himself for us in order to set us free ... so that (we) would have no ambition except to do good.    Second Reading

While Jesus after his own baptism was at prayer, heaven opened, and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily shape, like a dove.     Gospel
This week’s texts if you want to reflect further

Isaiah 40: 1–5. 9–11; Psalm 103 (104); Titus 2: 11–14. 3: 4–7; Luke 3: 15–16. 21–22