Memorial of the Passion of St. John the Baptist ~ August 29, 2022

Posted by Team Missio on Aug 23, 2022 7:46:46 PM


We salute the life and dedication of St. John the Baptist who...

Reflections on the readings for the Memorial of the Passion of St. John the Baptist (August 29, 2022): 1 COR 2:1-5; PS 119:97,98,99,100,101,102; MK 6:17-29

MISSIO offers “Mission In Scripture” to nurture a missionary heart, providing reflections on the missionary themes in the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.

called God’s people to truth and repentance in preparation for the coming of Christ -- and at the cost of his own life.

This memorial of St. John the Baptist calls us to appreciate his life spent in loyal service to God. He performed the extraordinary task of revealing to the Jewish people that it was time for them to reject sin and to embrace God’s will. To do this, he baptized them with water as a sign of their penitence. But at the same time, John made it clear that he was not the Messiah, that he was not even worthy to loosen the thongs of His sandals. Rather, another person would come with a baptism of the Holy Spirit and fire. John had the honor of baptizing Jesus, although he protested that our Lord should be baptizing him. John continued to preach and to point out evil and injustice to all who would listen. Eventually he was arrested for declaring that the Tetrarch Herod and his wife were not lawfully wed because he had divorced his first wife to marry his brother’s spouse Herodias. Pope Benedict XVI commented on John’s imprisonment: “The task set before the Baptist as he lay in prison was to become blessed by this unquestioning acceptance of God’s obscure will; to reach the point of asking no further for external, visible, unequivocal clarity, but, instead, of discovering God precisely in the darkness of this world and of his own life, and thus becoming profoundly blessed.” 

Herodias sought still greater vengeance against John. She used her daughter Salome who danced for Herod at a feast, enticing him to offer her whatever she wanted. Herodias told her to ask for the head of John the Baptist. “The king was deeply distressed, but because of his oaths and the guests he did not wish to break his word to her. So he promptly dispatched an executioner with orders to bring back (John’s) head. He went off and behead him in the prison. He brought in the head on a platter and gave it to the girl. The girl in turn gave it to her mother. When his disciples heard about it, they came and took his body and laid it in a tomb” (Mark 6:26-29). So St. John the Baptist laid down his life in fulfilling his mission. He had prepared the way for Christ who would soon give up His own life to redeem the whole world from sin.  

Suggested missionary action:  We can pray to St. John the Baptist to help us have a better appreciation of our own gift of faith in the sacrament of baptism, and the importance of seeking -- and accepting -- the will of God in all things. 

Topics: Scripture reflection, Ordinary Time, God's grace, Faith


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