Hearing God’s Word in Every Sound

My friend John just pointed out to me the Alternative Opening Prayer for today’s Mass. The alternative was not used in the Mass I attended this morning and I’m guessing I’m not the only one for whom that was the case. It is much too beautiful a prayer to escape attention, so here it is:

Lord our God,
all truth is from you,
and you alone bring oneness of heart.
Give your people the joy
of hearing your word in every sound
and of longing for your presence more
than for life itself.
May all the attractions of a changing world
serve only to bring us the peace of your kingdom
which the world does not give.
Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Who do You Say I Am?

“Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” asks Jesus of his disciples in today’s Gospel from Matthew. They give various answers – John the Baptist, Elijah, Jeremiah or one of the other prophets. Then Jesus asks the $64 million question: “But who do you say I am?”

That is a question Jesus puts to each of us. What do you say when Jesus asks you, “Who do you say I am?” It would make a good prayer exercise for today to reflect a bit on who exactly Jesus is for you. Simple question, but one we need to be able to answer for ourselves and for Jesus.

[Update: I just saw that my friend Beth posted her answer to the Gospel question on Journey last night. See here for her reflection.]