Category Archives: Weekly Reflections

This week’s Gospel readings discuss readiness. Anticipating years of leisure if he built barns large enough to store a bountiful harvest, a landowner’s plans did not prepare him for a life cut short. Servants risked getting caught slacking off if the master happened to return early. The owner of an orchard, ready to give up on an unproductive fig tree, agreed to let the gardener cultivate and fertilize it for one more year. Although people observed clouds and wind to predict the weather, they failed to realize how other things were going in

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Invited to dinner at the home of a Pharisee, Jesus chose not to participate in washing already clean dishes. The ritual wouldn’t cleanse hearts. Then our Lord pointed out the problem of Pharisees loving places of honor while overlooking love for God. A scholar of the law also felt insulted, and surely more so when Jesus said that the scholars laid heavy burdens on people without lifting a finger to help. In contrast to those learned people, God knows and understands everything. Jesus taught that our heavenly Father loves us enough to care abo

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Martha wanted Jesus to tell her sister to help with the hospitality, instead of sitting around listening to Him. Knowing the Commandments to love God and neighbor, a scholar wanted Jesus to narrow down the neighborhood. Jesus responded with the tale of a Samaritan who showed mercy, whereas others purposely passed by the victim of a brutal robbery. In another parable, a traveler arrived in the middle of the night. With nothing on hand to serve his guest, the host knocked on the door of a friend to ask for some bread. When we feel like asking who

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God had given Job, an upright man, the blessings of family and prosperity. Then Job lost it all but still held on to his faith. Jesus advised anyone who decided to follow Him to keep plowing ahead without looking back. When the Lord chose 72 to go out in pairs, He knew that they would experience both welcome and rejection. Either way, the Lord instructed them to announce the Kingdom at hand. Moving forward inevitably means leaving something behind. As laborers in the field, do we focus on leading productive lives with faith that what gets plowe

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Advising His followers to listen carefully, the Lord counted as family anyone who truly heard and acted on the Word of God. Like lighting a lamp, the Lord came to enlighten us. He taught that what we do can serve as effectively as putting a lamp on a lampstand. Herod the tetrarch (son of King Herod) heard speculations that John the Baptist, Elijah, or an ancient prophet had arisen and appeared as Jesus. The Disciples heard those rumors, too. Listening to the Word of God, do we sometimes take to heart only what we want to hear and let the rest g

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Admittedly unworthy to have Jesus under his roof, a centurion sent friends to ask that the Lord cure his servant from a distance. Observing a funeral procession, Jesus raised a widow’s only son from the dead. At the home of a Pharisee, a sinful woman approached Jesus, washed His feet with her tears, dried them with her hair, and applied some ointment. What the Pharisee regarded as impudence (what nerve!), Jesus recognized as love. Has faith planted in our hearts grown enough for us to trust that when we ask the Lord to just say the word, He a

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People sought to touch the Lord or even just His clothes, hoping for healing through Him. Proclaiming that the poor, the hungry, the distraught, and those despised because of Him were also blessed, Jesus sought to touch the hearts of His sometimes bewildered followers. Before the Crucifixion, Jesus entrusted care of His mother to a beloved Disciple. When we fall short of Jesus’ challenge to be merciful, just as the Father is merciful, can we at least give thanks for relationships in which we find that the more we love, the more forgiving we b

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