Reflection: 10th February 2019

A Reflection for the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Lk 5:1-11 ( )

The contrasting images are compelling and challenge not just our imagination but also the focus of our spiritual life and mission: Isaiah’s vision of “the Lord sitting on a  high throne… his glory fills the whole earth”, and Mark’s depiction of Jesus who “sat down and taught the crowds from the boat”. One sitting on a high throne, the other sitting in a boat; Both in the midst of, and communicating with, different throngs: the Lord of hosts surrounded by Angels and Seraphs, while the disciples see Jesus surrounded by a needy crowd, hungry to hear the Word.

At the same time, the experience of being in the presence of the Lord of Hosts and the presence of Jesus elicits a response in the individual –  of being in a holy presence and of feeling totally unworthy. This sense of awe is accompanied by an awareness of our own sinfulness.  

This experience is at the heart of our own spiritual life and mission. It is the paradox of our relationship with God. We are both ‘unworthy’ and yet ‘purified’ by God’s / Jesus’ presence. Ultimately, we are ‘cleansed’ by the experience and enabled to respond to the invitation “whom shall I send”.

Richard Foran – Richard spent some 20 years as a member of the Spiritans, Holder of Master’s degrees in Theology & Cross-Cultural Ministry, and in Social Work, he worked in Africa, including for over a decade in Angola, as well as in Jamaica and the USA. He and his wife Sharon now live in Ireland.