Reflection for Fifth Sunday of Ordinary Time Year C 2022

   The call of the Lord which Isaiah heard, centuries before the Christian Era began, is the same call which Peter and the other fishermen heard from Jesus himself at the beginning of his public ministry. It is also the one to which St. Paul responded some thirty years after Christ’s death and resurrection. If we pay attention and listen intently, each one of us may hear the Lord calling today.
         Isaiah’s call  came to him in a vision as he was praying in the Temple. In his meditation, he saw the Lord seated on a lofty throne surrounded by angels and hear the Lord say, ” whom shall I send? Despite feeling unworthy, Isaiah replied, ” here I am . Send me.”
       Peter and his companions were fishing, when their call came. Jesus first asked Simon ( who was later known as Peter) for the use of a boat so that he could preach to the crowds on the shore of Lake Gennesaret.
      When it turned out that he had summon the other boat to help with the fish, so great was the catch, Simon realized Jesus was o ordinary man. Feeling unworthy , he sought to escape this holy presence, but Jesus told him not to fear, since from then on he would not be catching fish, but ” catching ” people – bringing them into the Kingdom of God. Simon , along with his brother Andrew and their partners James and John, the sons of  Zebedee, brought their boat ashore and left everything to follow Jesus.   
         The call of Saint Paul came in a more dramatic way . Paul was on a journey to Damascus, , commissioned by the chief priests of the Jewish people to apprehend followers of Jesus in the foreign synagogues and bring them back to Jerusalem for punishment. As they approached the city a light brighter than the sun flashed around him and his companions. They fell to the ground and he heard a voice speaking his name and saying ” why are you persecuting me? ” it was the voice of the rise and glorified Jesus calling Paul to be his apostle to the Gentiles.
          Each of these calls comes in a different manner. The first came in a vision . The second  was a personal invitation. The third call was the last recorded appearance by Jesus after Bristol resurrection. God calls each of us, as followers of Jesus, to spread the Good News of salvation in our own way. For most of us , there are no vision. Instead, the Holy Spirit  we have received gently whispers in our ears and the sacred Body and Blood of Christ we receive in the Holy Eucharist strengthens our resolve to answer the whispered call.
        If we listen intently, we can hear the Spirit’ s invitation. To respond, we have only to follow the teachings of Jesus, conforming our lives to his commandments of unconditional love for God and for others. If each of us were to answer that call, the example of our lives would spread the Good News of Christ’s salvation like wildfire through our world.
God bless you all
Fr. Dominic
Your brother in Christ