4th Sunday in Ordinary time


Deuteronomy 18:15-20
1 Corinthians 7:32-35
Mark 1:21-28


Deuteronomy 18:15-20       Moses said, ‘Your God will raise up for you a prophet, from amongst you and to the prophet you must listen.’

Psalm 94        If today you hear his voice harden not your hearts

1 Corinthians 7:32-35          I say this only to help you, not to put a halter around your neck but to make sure everything is as it should be and that you give your undivided attention to the Lord.

Mark 1:21-28             Here is a teaching that is new and with authority behind it. He gives orders even to unclean spirits who obey him.’

A theme running through the liturgy today is one of LISTENING WITH ATTENTION TO THE WORD OF GOD.  ‘God spoke and it came into being’. The world is created.  Unclean spirits are cast aside. We are redeemed. Heaven is opened to us as God speaks.  

How can you listen if you cannot hear?

In the Weekend Australian Review January 20-21 there is a book review entitled Talking through Light. The author Jessica Kirkness is writing of her deaf Grandparents who live in a world of light in order to be able to communicate. She says darkness was the enemy of her deaf grandparents.  To communicate they relied on visual cues and being able to see everything going on around them. Darkness meant the end of the dialogue. There were no whispered words with the lights off before sleep.

For some people, God communicates in the darkness of life’s disappointments, doubts, and failings. To others light is the medium of God’s guiding word; for Jesus says, ‘I am the light of the world, whoever follows me will not walk in the dark but will have the light of life’ Jn 8:12 God speaks and walks with you in light and darkness.

Fr Peter Addicoat CP is parish priest and community leader of our St Joseph’s parish/community in Hobart, Tasmania.