But when is the
first Sunday?

I, the LORD, have called you for the victory of justice, I have grasped you by the hand; I formed you, and set you as a covenant of the people, a light for the nations, to open the eyes of the blind, to bring out prisoners from confinement, and from the dungeon, those who live in darkness.

The Church’s calendar is a rather complicated endeavor. You have to be really good at math to properly assemble it, and understand various historical nuances.

In our parish, the calendar may seem a little odd. We continue to honor the Christmas season right through February 2nd, the Solemnity of the Presentation. Our Christmas decorations remain, yet the vestments we use will change to green next week. It will be the Second Sunday in Ordinary Time.

Wait, ummmm, what happened to the First Sunday in Ordinary Time?

Technically, Ordinary Time is observed in two periods: The first period beginning on the day after the Solemnity of the Baptism of the Lord (which we celebrate today) and ending on the day before Ash Wednesday; and The second period beginning on the Monday after Pentecost (the conclusion of the Easter Season) and continuing until the Saturday before the First Sunday of Advent.

That may be the right answer, but it really does not answer our question: When/where is the First Sunday in Ordinary Time?

We could see today’s Solemnity of the Baptism of the Lord as replacing or offsetting the First Sunday in Ordinary Time or we could look at it another way. The Baptism of the Lord is a start, a beginning, a first thing we must live every day.

On this day God reveals that Jesus is indeed His Son, the Messiah. The identity of God is made know: On coming up out of the water he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit, like a dove, descending upon him. And a voice came from the heavens, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”

Our lives are filled with ordinariness. But, it all depends on how we interpret our ordinary experiences. If we simply ignore our ordinary every day experiences or see them has having no importance, we are missing something very important. Our ordinariness is not meaningless. Every moment, our every beginning, is to be seen and experienced in Jesus.

Jesus came to show us that what is ordinary – what is us – is so very important to Him. He shows us that our ordinariness is graced and we can accomplish all through and in Him. He has taken us by the hand. Every Sunday and every ordinary moment is of first importance lived in Him.