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Psalm: The Benedictus

Lavish Mercy

Saturday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time

January 30, 2021


Today, in God’s Lavish Mercy, our Responsorial Psalm is the glorious Benedictus which is one of the three canticles in Luke’s first two chapters, the other two being the “Magnificat” and the “Nunc Dimittis”. The Benedictus was the song of thanksgiving uttered by Zechariah on the occasion of the circumcision of his son, John the Baptist.

Rembrandt: The Circumcision of John

Can you imagine Zechariah that morning, holding his little boy, eight days old? This unexpected, miraculous child would be named in a ceremony marking the ancient covenant between God and God’s People.

The little group gathered for the ritual expected the name to be an honorary repetition, probably his grandfather’s name. Instead, it is a name delivered by an angel: John, which means “Yahweh has shown favor,” — announcing John’s role in salvation history.

When Zechariah…

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