John the Baptist

Encountering the Word — John 3:27-20

"The Lamb of God, John the Baptist and Andrew" (detail) by Ottavio Vannini (1585-c. 1643) [Public domain]

John answered, “No one can receive anything except what is given him from heaven. You yourselves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but I have been sent before him. He who has the bride is the bridegroom; the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom’s voice; therefore this joy of […]

Celebrate your Baptism

"The Baptism" (detail) by Pietro Longhi [Public domain]

“See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God. Yet so we are.” (1 John 3:1) Almost every year on the upcoming feast of the Baptism of the Lord, Pope Francis encourages Christians to celebrate the day of their baptism. “The celebration of Jesus’ baptism invites every Christian to remember his […]

Expectations & Fulfillment

"Baptism of Christ" (detail) by Perugino

This coming Sunday is the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord. In the readings for Mass, an option for the first reading is from Isaiah 40. The passage is ripe with imagery that perhaps sounds a little more like our Advent readings. In fact, this same reading is the reading for the second Sunday of Advent in Year B […]

The Anointing of Jesus

At first glance, the scene makes little sense. John’s strident call to repentance provokes an overwhelming response. People of all shapes and sizes flock to him in the wilderness. They are baptized in the Jordan as a sign of repentance and cleansing. Suddenly, out of the crowd steps John’s cousin, Jesus. Wait a minute. What’s Jesus, the sinless one, doing […]