Today's Mass Readings

Click here to go to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Site for today's Mass readings. 

December 24, 2017

Matthew tells us that after his temptations in the desert, “when Jesus heard that John had been

arrested, he withdrew to Galilee” (Matthew 4:12).

It was time for Jesus to start revealing himself as Messiah. In Matthew’s Gospel the temptations are followed by a further revelation of Jesus’s identity as announced by the angel and revealed by the visit of the Magi (Matthew 1:1 to 2:12). And he starts b...

December 23, 2017

As “Master of the Way,” Jesus teaches us above all how to love. The greatest temptation against love,

however, is love itself. Once people have begun to love in any measure—love the world, love other people, love God—the love they have can be used as a lever to pry them off of their adherence to love that is authentic, total and pure.

The third temptation in the desert is at one and the same time th...

December 22, 2017

The devil couldn’t convince Jesus to make the goal of his mission something people accepted. So he 

tempted him to make the means for achieving it something they expected. He challenged him to establish, before he ever started, that God was going to help him—and on Jesus’s terms.

This is the temptation against divine hope—hope that is worthy of the reality of God.

The devil takes Jesus to the top of...

December 21, 2017

In Matthew’s Gospel Jesus’s temptations in the desert follow immediately upon his baptism in the

Jordan. That is logical. Jesus has just heard the Father's voice say, “This is my beloved Son.” We can understand why he needed to go apart and pray!

He went out into the desert to wrestle with the truth of his identity and of his mission. We must remember that Jesus in his human nature, in his human con...

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