First Reading:                    Isaiah 60:1-6

Responsorial Psalm:          Psalm 72:1-2, 7-8, 10-11, 12-13 (cf. 11)

Second Reading:               Ephesians 3:2-3 a, 5-6

Alleluia:                             Matthew 2:2

Gospel:                             Matthew 2:1-12



This is my ninth time through these readings.  There is always something new and different.  The idea of manifestation to the Gentiles always seems pertinent to Black Catholics.



Annotated Bibliography

Material above the double line draws from material below the double line.  Those uninterested in scholarly and tangential details should stop reading here.  If they do, however, they may miss some interesting material.


Isaiah 60:1-6

Bettye Collier-Thomas, Daughters of Thunder: Black Women Preachers and Their Sermons, 1850-1979[1]

Julia A. J. Foote (1823-1901) was born in Schenectady, New York, the daughter of former slaves.  She was one of a handful of Black women preachers who began her career before the Civil War began.  In Boston, Massachusetts, she joined the AME Zion Church.  In Massachusetts, Foote got religion and began a fifty-year career as an itinerant evangelist and a Methodist holiness preacher.  The AME Zion Church ordained Foote its first woman deacon in 1895 and its second ordained elder in 1899.  Collier-Thomas writes,


While Foote accepted perfection as a tenet of holiness, she said, “Do not misunderstand me.  I am not teaching absolute perfection, for that belongs to God alone.  Nor do I mean a state of angelic or Adamic perfection, but Christian perfection—an extinction of every temper contrary to love.”


In 1851, in Detroit, Michigan, Foote delivered “A `Threshing’ Sermon” about threshing out the devil and letting in the Holy Ghost.  How Foote gets from Isaiah 60:6-9 to beating “in pieces many people” is beyond me.  How she preached it is as follows.


The threshing instrument is of the former [offensive weapon] description.  It is of the same quality as that which is quick and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword.  “For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that they might destroy the works of the devil,” and this is one of the weapons which he employs in the hands of his people to carry his gracious designs into execution, together with the promise that they shall beat in pieces many people (Mic. 4:13; Isa 23:18; 60:6-9 [6 is used here]).


Psalm 72:1-2, 7-8, 10-11, 12-13 (cf. 11)


Ephesians 3:2-3 a, 5-6

For recurring themes in Sacred Scripture, see the following.  The exclamation point (!) indicates where a principal reference list of passages related by a common theme or expression is found. 


Verse 1         Philippians 1:7!

Verse 2         Ephesians 3:9 [171B], 10 [171B], 13!; Colossians 1:25 [108C]; 1 Corinthians 1:25 [29B], 9:17 [74B]; Ephesians 4:1 [58B], Romans 15:15! [22A, 94A].

Verse 3a       Romans 16:25! [11B].

Verse 5         Ephesians 1:26!, 2:20; Mark 3:28 [89B].

Verse 6         Ephesians 2:13 [107B], 18 ff. [107B]; Romans 8:17 [63C], Galatians 3:29 [96C].


Matthew 2:2


Matthew 2:1-12


Verse  1        Luke 2:1-7 [15ABC, 18ABC]; Judges 19:1 ff.

Verse   2       Numbers 24:17; 2 Peter 1:19; Revelation 22:16 [61C].

Verse   3       Matthew 21:10 [37A].

Verse   4      

Verse   5       John 7:42.

Verse   6       Micah 5:1, 3; 2 [12C]; Samuel 5:2; 1 [162C]; Chronicles 11:2.

Verse   7       Matthew 2:16.

Verse   8      

Verse   9      

Verse  10      Isaiah 39:2; Jonah 4:6.

Verse  11      Luke 2:10 [14ABC]; Psalm 72:10 ff. [4A, 20ABC], 15; Isaiah 60:6 [20ABC]; Matthew 2:22 [17A].

Verse  12      1 Kings 13:9 f.



Matthew 2

Kurt Aland and Barbara Aland, The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism, 2nd ed., Erroll F. Rhodes, tr.[2]

The Alands explain technical aspects of conventions used in the Greek apparatus.


Matt 2:11

Carolyn Osiek, R.S.C.J., “`When You Pray, Go into Your tameion’ [room] (Mathew 6:6) But Why?”[3]

Osiek places Matthew in a broad non-Palestinian context, observing the wide range of terms Matthew uses for coinage, including gold in Matthew 2:11.  From this Osiek argues,


In light of these facts, one wonders just how familiar Matthew would have been with a Palestinian farmhouse.  Whereas his environment was surely not predominantly Latin speaking, Roman housing customs were, by the late first century, inevitably influencing urban life across the Mediterranean area.


Osiek gets to the heart of her argument about prayer, when she writes, “. . . intimate conversation between good friends takes place in secret, that is, in deliberate concealment, as does action for the welfare of a single client, which forms the backbone of the face-to-face patron-client system that characterized Roman society.”



For more on sources see the Appendix file.  Personal Notes are on the web site at


[1] San Francisco, CA 94103-1741:  A Wiley Imprint: 1998, 57, 59, 60. 61, 64, 65.


[2] Grand Rapids, Michigan, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1989, 243, 252, 254.


[3] the Catholic Biblical Quarterly, Vol. 71, No. 4  (April 2009) 728.