Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, Year B

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Lectionary: 21
Read the Gospel: Mark 1:7-11

Gospel Summary
Most of Mark’s accounts of the events in Jesus’ life are short and to the point. The account of Jesus’ Baptism given in today’s Gospel illustrates this. In a few brief sentences Mark tells of the Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River by John the Baptist. The brevity of the final verse of the passage makes it unclear whether Jesus alone heard the voice that came from the heavens, or if everyone who witnessed his Baptism heard the same. What is clear from the words is the special relationship Jesus had with God the Father.

Reflection for Parents
The final words of today’s Gospel are wonderful words for us to bestow upon our children. Who is not encouraged by the reminder that they are a beloved son or daughter? What child, at any age, does not long to hear from a parent, “With you I am well pleased?” Today is a good day to think about how often you take the time to lavish words of love and praise upon your child. Take time to be still and let your heavenly Father lavish those same words of love and praise upon you.

Bringing the Gospel into Your Family
Set out pictures, candles, white garments, and other reminders of the Baptisms of family members. Recall the celebrations. Remind your family that the promises made at Baptism include: being taught to practice our faith, keeping God’s Commandments, and loving God and neighbor. Talk about how family members are living out these baptismal promises today. 

Discussion Starters

  1. My favorite part of the celebration of Baptism is . . . because . . .
  2. One of the baptismal promises I need to work harder at is . . .
  3. Someone who makes me feel special and loved is . . .