Tag Archives: the bible

Gospel Reflection for July 28, 2019, 17th Sunday Ordinary Time

22 Jul

Sunday Readings: Genesis 18.20-32; Colossians 2.12-14; Luke 11.1-13

“Ask, and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you.” – Luke 11.9

To pray that God’s name be hallowed and that God’s kingdom come is to acknowledge that all barriers to love must be dissolved. Anything that separates race from race, rich from poor, gender from gender, age group from age group, Christian from non-Christian is a barrier to the holiness God wishes to share with believers. Biases have no place in the community that names God our Father.

Jesus calls us to preserve in prayer. God is more gracious that a friend who reluctantly gets up in the night to help us, but God’s graciousness does not guarantee that we get what we want. We may not receive what we ask for; we may instead discover more than we were looking for or be surprised at what’s behind the door on which we are knocking.

What are you seeking in prayer? What have you found? 


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Gospel Reflection for July 21, 2019, 16th Sunday Ordinary Time

15 Jul

Sunday Readings: Genesis 18.1-10; Colossians 1.24-28; Luke 10.38-42

“Jesus entered a village where a woman named Martha welcomed him to her home. She had a sister named Mary, who seated herself at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teachings”  – Luke 10.38-39

In Sunday’s gospel Mary sits at Jesus’ feet to listen to his teachings and Martha serves him. These two actions–listening to Jesus’ words and serving a meal–are the same actions that take place in the liturgy of the word and the liturgy of the eucharist. Perhaps Martha and Mary represent two forms of ministry evolving in the Christian community. Many women today value this gospel because it is one of the few stories about women. However, Luke sets the two sisters strangely against each other in the short gospel scene. Rather than ask Mary directly to help, Martha asks Jesus to command Mary to help with the work of hospitality. The request backfire.  Martha get chided for overburdening herself and Mary gets praise for silent listening.

The conflicts in the Martha and Mary story suggest that official ministries are evolving in the house churches of the A.D. 80s. The ministries of women in Christian communities have become controversial. The scene effectively silences the ministries of both women. Jesus tells Martha to give up her ministry of hospitality and perhaps house church and join her sister in preferring the better part–silent listening to Jesus. Perhaps their ministries of word and table make Martha and Mary too memorable in the life of the early Christian community to forget. Perhaps they are so important that Luke uses the voice of Jesus’ authority to put them in their place, the same subordinate position women are transforming today.

How do you participate in the Church’s ministries of word and table? What would happen if all the women in your parish withheld their service and leadership? 


If you enjoy this Gospel Reflection, please visit the Sunday By Sunday page to order a subscription or to view sample issues. Start a small bible study. Be a leader.

Gospel Reflection for July 14, 2019, 15th Sunday Ordinary Time

8 Jul

Sunday Readings: Deuteronomy 30.10-136)?4; Colossians 1.15-20; Luke 10.25-37

“Which of these three, in your opinion, was neighbor to the man who fell in with the robbers?”  – Luke 10.25-37

Compassion may be understood as the capacity to be attracted to and moved by the vulnerability of someone else. It requires the willingness to risk, to stop and share one’s strengths and vulnerability, rather than rushing on with our own preoccupations or stereotypes. As Jesus’ story shows, compassion is the opposite of a priest’s self-righteousness and a Levite’s apathy.

Compassion is a movement of the heart. It includes sensitivity to what is weak and wounded as well as the courage to allow oneself to be affected by another’s pain. Who can take away suffering without entering into it? How can we help to heal someone else’s wounds if we have not begun to accept our own. Compassion also demands action — the type that takes time or even makes time — to help change persons and structures that sometimes blindly exclude or marginalize.

What experiences in your life make it difficult to feel compassionate? What experiences have taught you compassion and the need to be less judgmental? 


If you enjoy this Gospel Reflection, please visit the Sunday By Sunday page to order a subscription or to view sample issues. Start a small bible study. Be a leader.

Gospel Reflection for June 30, 2019, 13th Sunday Ordinary Time

26 Jun

Gospel Reflection for June 30, 2019, 13th Sunday Ordinary Time

Sunday Readings: 1 Kings 19.16, 19-21; Galatians 5.1, 13-18; Luke 9.51-62 

“As the days were being fulfilled for Jesus to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem.”  – Luke 9.51

In the first verse we hear this Sunday, Jesus sets out for Jerusalem, a journey that leads to the cross and provides the literary frame for ten chapters (Luke 9.51-19.28). Ultimately the journey leads from death to life, lifts Jesus into glory, and promises his followers a path to life with God. Jesus’ men and women disciples serve an apprenticeship on this journey to Jerusalem. On their way Jesus encounters three people who want to follow him but each finds the cost too high—no place to lay one’s head, no possessions, little time for family and parents. These three introduce us to our yes-but-not-yet selves.

What is something spiritual you plan to do but not yet? 


If you enjoy this Gospel Reflection, please visit the Sunday By Sunday page to order a subscription or to view sample issues. Start a small bible study. Be a leader.

Image 24 Jun

Tiny Retreat

17 Jun

In honor of the Feast of Corpus Christi, the Body and Blood of Christ, we offer you a tiny retreat based on the feast’s Gospel. This retreat is especially for those who do not get Sunday by Sunday. Please feel free to pass the retreat on to a friend.



To begin place yourself in the presence of Jesus. 



Jesus, this is ________.  I have been fed by you at the Eucharist for
_____ years. This Sunday, June 23, is the day we celebrate your gift of the Eucharist. I begin by reading this story from Luke’s Gospel.
 

Why don’t you give them something to eat?


Narrator:  Jesus spoke to the crowds of the reign of God, and he healed all who were in need of healing. As sunset approached, the twelve came to him.


Twelve:  Dismiss the crowd so that they can go into the villages and farms in the neighborhood and find themselves lodging and food, for this is certainly an out-of-the-way place.


Jesus:  Why don’t you give them something to eat yourselves?


Twelve:  We have nothing but five loaves and two fishes. Shall we go and buy food for all these people?


Narrator:  There were about five thousand men.


Jesus:  Have them sit down in groups of fifty or so.


Narrator:  Jesus’ disciples followed his instructions and got the people all seated. Then taking the five loaves and the two fishes, Jesus raised his eyes to heaven, pronounced a blessing over them, broke them, and gave them to his disciples for distribution to the crowd. They all ate until they had enough. What was left filled twelve baskets.

 (Luke 9.11-17)


Jesus, you feed people who follow you hungry for healing, hungry for the words you speak, and hungry because it has been a long day. You feel compassion for them and tell your followers to feed them. When they say they have only a little food and little money to buy more, you —

Take the food they offer you,
Bless it, acknowledging it is a gift from God,
Break it into pieces,
Give it to your followers to distribute to the people.

This is what happens at our Eucharist today. We offer the bread and wine that is our lives. It becomes your body and blood to nourish us. As in your time, when we have all eaten there is plenty left over, plenty to share.



How does celebrating Eucharist nourish you?
How does Eucharist lead you to become nourishment for others?



A friend’s mother told her that if she didn’t stop eating so many chocolate-chip cookies, she was going to turn into one. The mother exaggerated about the cookies, but her example holds true for the Eucharist. When we gather at Eucharist, we remember how Jesus gave his whole self to us. We find the strength and courage to try this kind of self-giving ourselves. Because we gather together over and over, we remember over and over. We become more and more like Jesus. We become his real presence to our world.



When have your experienced yourself as Christ present in the world?
How has God acted in you and through you for nourish others?



To conclude make a prayer of thanks and praise for the many times you have received the Body of Christ. Remember the people who prepared you for this sacrament and those you have shared Eucharist with all these years. Conclude your retreat with the Alleluia verse from the feast day liturgy.

Alleluia, Alleluia! I am the living bread that come down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever (John 6.51). Alleluia!


If you want reflections for each of the summer & September Sundays, call Lacy at 800-232-5533. We will send you them for just $7.00 (shipping included).

Gospel Reflection for June 16, 2019, Trinity Sunday

14 Jun

Sunday Readings: Proverbs 8.22-31; Romans 5.1-5; John 16.12-15

“When the Spirit of truth comes, this One will guide you along the way of all truth. The Spirit will not speak independently but will speak only what the Spirit hears and will declare to you the things that are to come.”  – John 16.13

In Sunday’s gospel Jesus talks with his disciples, preparing to leave them. His words strain to express the communion in which he lives with his Father and the Spirit and in which his disciples will participate. Most Christians grasp an image of God as creator and God as incarnate Son more easily than an image of God as Spirit and guide. The Spirit in whom we live, move, and have our being may elude us, until perhaps we lose a parent, grandparent, or friend and experience their spirit and voice arising within us. The Spirit is the love or relatedness between Creator, Son, and all that lives. God is not only the Creator of old or the Savior of 2,000 years ago but the Spirit of our daily breath and deepest present desires, conflicts, and challenges. The Spirit breathes in us today.

Whose spirit has arisen in you to guide you at key points in your life? What does the image of breath tell you about the Holy Spirit?


If you enjoy this Gospel Reflection, please visit the Sunday By Sunday page to order a subscription or to view sample issues. Start a small bible study. Be a leader.

Gospel Reflection for June 2, 2019, Ascension

29 May

Gospel Reflection for June 2, 2019, Ascension

Sunday Readings: Acts 1.1-11; Ephesians 1.17-23; Luke 24.46-53

Jesus spoke to this disciples, “Thus it is written that the messiah would suffer and rise from the dead on the third day and that repentance and forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in his name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are the witnesses of these things.”  – Luke 24.48

In the cosmology of Jesus’ time, God and the heavens were up and human begins and Earth were below. Our 2,000-year old gospel tells the story of Jesus’ return to God is to go to the heavens. Today humans ride the clouds regularly in planes. Thee Hubble telescope captures the spidery webs of light from other galaxies. The Church that in the 16th century suppressed Galileo’s proofs that Earth revolved around the sun today welcomes the work of scientists as they expand the edge of mystery in space and in matter.

In returning to God, the risen Jesus takes with him the human nature assumed in his incarnation. Jesus is about embodied divinity. Jesus remains God incarnate. One of us humans is with God. Jesus is the first born of a new humanity that shares life with God. Jesus goes ahead of us toward the consummation of all in God. We hunger for lasting communion with our loved ones.

In the ascension Jesus passes over into communion with God, bridging the human and divine. He blesses his company of disciples upon whom he promises to send the Holy Spirit to animate their witness to the world.

How does science affect your faith? How do you imagine communion in God?


If you enjoy this Gospel Reflection, please visit the Sunday By Sunday page to order a subscription or to view sample issues. Start a small bible study. Be a leader.

Check out Sunday by Sunday!

28 May

Sunday by Sunday keeps the Sunday Gospel with you all week long.

 

We are happy to share some of our Sunday by Sunday issues with you. Each weekly issue brings you:

  • The Sunday Gospel in plain language.
  • Reflection on how the Gospel can shape your life.
  • Prayer on the Gospel theme.

Click here to view some sample issues of Sunday by Sunday. Our new subscription year begins in October. Wouldn’t you like to gather a group to share the Gospel with each week? Individual subscriptions are also available. We guarantee it will enrich your life.

Click here for our calendar and prices. You can order online, or call Good Ground Press 800-232-5533. We still have Summer and September Sunday by Sunday issues. If you are not ready to commit to a subscription for 2019-2020, but want to explore what Sunday by Sunday has to offer, please give us a call at the above number and we will ship them out to you the next day.

Enjoy the blessings of the gospel with Sunday by Sunday.

 

 

Luke’s Gospel: Written For Us

17 May

Beginning in June all our Sunday gospels will be from Luke. In Luke’s gospel, Jesus seeks out the lost and forgotten, gives second chances, welcomes the sinner home. Sister Joan’s new book focuses on these themes in its nine short chapters. Ideal for bible study and faith-sharing groups and for homilists. Go to goodgroundpress.com to read sample chapters. Call 800-232-5533 to place your order today or order online!

1-9 copies, $10.00 each; 10-99, $8.00; 100 or more, $7.00.


 

In both his gospel and the Acts of Apostles, Luke tells women’s stories — Mary and Martha, the widow of Nain, Mary Magdalene, Phoebe and Priscilla. You will meet them and more in word, illustrations, and prayer. Visit goodgroundpress.com to read sample chapters and to order your copy of Sister Joan’s new book, Holy Women of Luke’s Gospel. Only $8 per copy! Call 800-232-5533 to place your order today or order online!

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