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January 10, 1992     The Message
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January 10, 1992

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JanUary 10, 1992 The Message w for ,Catholics of Southwestern Indiana Commentary .5  Ma.;s Readir,9 By FA FHER  DONALD DILGER Sunday, Jan. 12: Cycle C: Luke 3:15-16, 21-22 The message of John the Baptist is given in eater detail by Luke than by Mark and atthew. In the still later Gospel of John the mes- ge of the Baptist is even longer. Luke used the OSpel of Mark to describe the message of John ut added his own material and that of another g, OSpel which has been lost. Only Luke here adds e reaction of the people that they thought John grtt be the Messiah As far as we can determine LMessiah' at the" iime" of lohn the Baptist would n ,e meant an agent of God anointed and desig- ated by God to restore, the kingdom of Israel. John denies being the Messiah as he does u!so in the Gos'.el of John. Instead he soeaks of his baptism wi{l water as being of a lower order 'elan.the baptism of "One mightie, r than I who is )itin.g. He will baptize with the Holy Spirit and !11 fire." This statement is followed by threats o .],Udgment ar, ainst the wicked, "tbe chaff that i!1, be burnei with unquenchable fire." We can- 11 s])t3nrw how much of this message actually was Oken [)3' John the Baptist. While Mark wrote of a ip.hs m with the Holy Spirit, Luke and b tthew add "and witfl fire." I h- Such a description of Christian baptism may );ve originated not so mu(:h from John the Bap5 Las.from biblical texts associating God's Spiril k) th fire, such as Isaiah 4"4-5 We must always 13e . ..... . I d- p m mind that the gospels were written ,des after the events they depict. Christian J()hn as Messiah? The baptism of Jesus theologians and teachers used the Hebrew Scrip- tures to expand upon words and actions found in the traditions they had received from a much ear- lier time. Luke now peculiarly adds a note that Herod put an end to John's preaching by putting him into prison. This is indeed remarkable because Jesus has not yet been baptized. It is only after this that Luke adds: "When all the people had been baptized and when Jesus also had been baptized." It is interesting to note how differently the gospels narrate the baptism of Jesus. The oldest gospel, that of Mark, states without qualification that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in lhe Jordan River. A decade or so later both Matthew and Luke have a problem with this bold statement. Matthew notes that John objected when Jesus came for baptism, that he would not baptize Jesus until Jesus ordered him to do so. Luke goes even farther. He had John put in prison before the baptism of lesus. In this way he avoids even mentioning that John hap- lized Jesus. A decade or more after Luke and Matthew the Gospel of John does not mention the baptism of Jesus at all. Christian theology had a problem explaining how the lesser could baptize the greater. That Jesus received baptism from John implied that Jesus became a disciple of John as did many other people. The gospels are (:lear that John had disci- ples. John's popularity with tim people is attested even outside the gospels in secular literature. A first century author indicates that it was John's popularity with the people that caused Herod to arrest him and have him executed. It was Herod's intention in this way to prevent any pos- sible rebellion under the leadership of John against Roman occupation. Luke ends our gospel reading today with the opening of the heavens and the descent of the Holy Spirit upon Jesus. A voice from heaven re- veals the identity of lesus: "You are my beloved Son. With you I am well pleased." The second phrase is a reference to a section of the prophe- cies of Isaiah called the "Suffering Servant' Poems." In the first of these poems the Servant of Yahweh is described as one "in wbom the Lord is well pleased." The poems describe the sufferings the Servant of Yahweh undergoes. As always we must ask: What is Luke teach- ing us? Baptism is the beginning of Christian life. Like Jesus every Christian is equipped with the Spirit for Christian ministry. Being active as a Christian, however, inevitably brings with it suf fering. Thus the words of the write from heawm are meant by Luke to sound in the ears of every Christian: "You ll'e my heh)ved son (daughteril In vou I am well pleasefl." The baptism of Jesus is followed by temptation, ministry, and suffel'- ing, and so will ours. Other readings for Baptism of Our Lord, Cycle C: Isaiah 42'.1-4, 6-7; Acts 10:34-38.  VATICAN crrY (CNS) A al envo " -- X, r_ . y to Croatia has . v ssed he , fire i-" pe that a cease- ' "YUgoslavia will lead to ," sting, ne " " tW gotiated peace be- ,.n Serbia and Croatia. .. ue envoy, Italian Cardinal q0ren- vie,., o Angelini, was inter- 1 uf d on Vatican Radio Jan. era V,sn to Cti:apresi. Cardinal Ange ely y Donations being accepted for relief efforts in Croatia dent of the Pontifical Council for Pastoral Assistance to Health Care Workers, said he visited hospitals in the war zone and a large children's hospital in the Croatian capi- tal of Zagreb, which has an underground nuclear-bomb shelter for 700 people. During the trip, the cardi- nal donated medical equip- Rosan basketball league play continues 7"he o /' llowine Hol Rosary ",..%ketba),  Y 'Vere " League scores Se, stlbmitted by Steve ',inCh ter. Black 25; Holy Spirit 30, Holy Rosary White 19: Good Shep- herd 49, Evansville Christian 22; Holy Rosary Green 24, St. Benedict White 13; St. Theresa Red 24; Holy Rosary Gold 23. ThChrei: !he King Gold 32, St. diet u,  White 17" St Bene- - mUe 30, Christ the King I YOUR I I FAMa.y .... I I PHAnMAcY: I Medical Arts Phar PAUL'S PHARMACY Paul Mayer, Owner 2107 W. Franklin St. 425-4364 Plaza Pharmacy Newburgh Plaza Shopping Center Fast Prescription Service Ken and Rebecca Hacker 853-7141 Oak Hill Pharmacy Prescription Specialists Hwy. 62 and N. Weinbach Ave. LARRY SCHULTHEIS, Prop, macy 3700 Bellerneade Avenue Phone 477-1532 Donald Gutzweiler -Wide Delivery bUncan's Riverside Pharmacy Prescription Service DrUgs - Sundries . CoSmveeli s Magazines We Deli ' Vn?. rner Riverside and Governor 422-9981 trtan's Pharmacy Ity-Wide Delive W 413 Locust Street dohn and Judy Stratman 425-5293 425-4422 ment, several tons of medicine and 20 tons of rice. The cardinal said the pur- pose of the trip was to convey the concern of Pope John Paul II for Croatia, "where people are living tremendous and terrible days of war." "Croatia is a clearly Catholic country. It is a coun- try with a strong sense of reli- gion and sees in the pope the anchor of salvation," he added. The cardinal was inter- viewed the day after Croatian and Serbian authorities agreed to a U.N. cease-fire plan that could set the stage for U.N. peace-keeping troops to enter combat areas. The cease-fire can "create the possibility to converse and reason," he said. In response to requests German American Bank We Make Friends For Life JASPER, INDIANA LIVE-IN CAREGIVERS You can make a difr- erence Be a Kelly@ Caregiver and get the personal satisfaction of help- ing others. You'll work in a private home, assisting with daily activi- ties and providing companion- ship and care. We offer a flexible schedule and a competitive salary. Plus you'll feel good about your work. Call todayl 464-5227 EOM M/F/V/H Not on agency- never a fee, Q KELty,,s,,,o, Living' The Kelly Girr'Plopll fl'om Message readers, a par- teal list of organizations ac- cepting donations ]br relief efforts Jbllows. Catholic Relief Services is accepting donations and has allocated $50,000 for Yu- goslavia and $50,000 for Al- bania. CRS is working through Care(as Austria. Funds are also being chan- neled to Mother Teresa. Elaine Klugh, administrative assistant for media and con- gressional relations at CRS, said shipping charges were prohibitive for sending hard goods, so CRS was only ac- cepting monetary donations. Contact Catholic Relief Ser- vices, P.O. Box 17220, Balti- more, MD 21297-0304. For information and credit card donations, contact (800) SEND HOPE. -- Caritas of Birmingham has contacted Medjugorje prayer groups to ask for dona- tions, to fly a DC 8 cargo plane from Birmingham, Al- abama, to Yugoslavia. Ac- cording to the organization, the plane will hold $1.5 mil- lion worth of medical sup- plies and equipment, and cost approximately $100,000 for the plane, pilot and flight. Contact Project Refugees -- Medjugorie, Caritas of Birm- ingham, Box 120, 4647 High- way 280 East, Birmingham, AL 35242. -- Father Giordano M. Be- lanich has contacted Med- jugje centers and individuals. He states that he is a Croatian priest working in New Jersey, who has been asked by the Bishops Conference of the Re- public of Croatia to form a charity organization to help the victims and refugees. Fa- ther Belanich said his organi- zation is authorized by the Archdiocese. of Zagreb, Rijeka and Krk to collect funds to buy food and to ship contain- ers of food, winter clothing and medical supplies. Con- tact Father Giordano M. Be- lanich, St. John the Baptist Croatian Mission Center, 239 Anderson Ave., Fairview, NJ 07022. Phone (800) 932-4340. Mater Dee feeder league basketball scores The following Mater Dee Feeder League basketball scores were submitted by James Townsend, Third and fourth grade teams: St. Philip 32, St. Joseph 6; WCCS I 22, St. Matthew I 8; WCCS II 33, Resurrection II 13; Holy Re- deemer II 41, Resurrection I 28; Holy Redeemer I 60, St. Matthew II 9; St. James 42, Holy Redeemer III 22. Fifth and sixth grade teams: St. Philip Green 22, St. Joseph 27; St. Philip White 34, WCCS Blue 30; Holy Re- deemer 57, St. Wendel 3. Seventh and eighth grade teams: St. Wendel 38, WCCS 36; Corpus Christi 41, St. Joseph 18; Resurrection 88, St. James 34; St. Philip 47, St. Matthew 22.