Today Bishop Boyea’s Year of the Bible reaches Chapter 8 of the Gospel of Saint Luke. To read the chapter go here: https://dioceseoflansing.org/luke-8
So what is God saying to us in this text? To help answer that, here’s a reflection by Deborah Amato, Chief of Staff serving the Diocese of Lansing.
To know more about Bishop Boyea’s Year of the Bible or to sign up, go to: https://www.dioceseoflansing.org/byob. Meanwhile, Deborah’s full script is reproduced below:
* The Gospel of Luke, Chapter 8, by Deborah Amato:
Hello, I’m Deborah Amato, Chief of Staff serving the Diocese of Lansing. Thanks for joining me as we make our way, together, through Bishop Boyea’s Year of the Bible. Today begins our second week with the gospel of Luke and our focus is on Chapter 8.
After being tempted in the desert at the beginning of chapter 4, Jesus begins his public ministry. Over these several chapters since chapter 4, Luke shares Jesus’s teaching, preaching, and healing through parables, miracles and acts of merciful healing.
We encounter here stories that are like familiar old friends for us: the parable of the sower and the seed; the calming of the storm, the healing of the Gerasene demoniac, the hemorrhaging woman and Jairus’ daughter.
Luke hints at the breadth and depth of Jesus’s salvific mission in this chapter. The universality of the mission of Jesus is reflected in the healing encounter with pagans – especially the Gerasene demoniac. Jesus also turns social convention on its head by allowing several women into his inner circle.
In chapter 5 Jesus called forth the first disciples who he begins to teach, mentor and form and after going away to the mountain to pray he chooses twelve of them whom he called apostles. At the beginning of chapter 9, Jesus will give those twelve apostles power and authority over all demons and the ability to cure diseases. He then sends them forth to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. Brothers and sisters, this invitation to go forth and proclaim the kingdom of God is for us too as disciples of Jesus.
As we continue our daily reading of scripture and daily encounter with Jesus, I’d offer a couple suggestions. If you are not currently praying with scripture, consider starting to do so now with these rich chapters of Luke’s gospel. On page 24 of the March issue of FAITH magazine, Dawn Hausmann offers practical steps to help you get started on this practice of daily resting in the presence of the Lord allowing Him to pour out His grace and blessing upon you.
Bishop Boyea invites us during this daily reading of scripture to allow Jesus to penetrate our hearts, our minds, and our souls. Luke’s detailed, descriptive narrative and beautiful storytelling provide just such an opportunity for an intimate encounter with our Lord.
Let us pray.
Heavenly Father, You are the first and primary author of Sacred Scripture. Help me to receive what you have revealed in your Holy Word. Give me a greater hunger to daily seek you in the Scriptures so that I might come to know you and your Son more intimately. May your Holy Spirit open me to be transformed by your Holy Word throughout this Year of the Bible. We ask these blessings through Jesus Christ, our Lord.