Nov. 18: 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C

Michelangelo Buonarroti, The Father with Wisdom Creating Adam (detail), Cappella Sistina, The Vatican, 1510



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Malachi 3:19-20
Responsorial Psalm: 98:5-6, 7-8, 9
Second Reading: Second Thessalonians 3:7-12
Gospel: Luke 21:5-19


‘So make up your minds not to prepare your defence in advance; for I will give you words and a wisdom that none of your opponents will be able to withstand or contradict (NRSV, Luke 21:14-15).’

Let us pray.

Father, even from the womb you speak your Word to us, revealing yourself once and for all, yet in every moment. In times of difficulty, indeed in every situation, may we open our minds to the Word always present, revealing and challenging, that we may grow in our understanding but also accept more fully your life always offered to us. May we not only grow in understanding but may we speak that truth so as to confound those who stand against you.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Nov. 9: Feast of the Dedication of the Basilica of Saint John Lateran in Rome

Hans Memling, The Resurrection, Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest 15th cent.


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Ez 47:1-2, 8-9, 12
Responsorial Psalm: 46:2-3, 5-6, 8-9
Second Reading: 1 Cor 3:9c-11, 16-17
Gospel: Jn 2:13-22

Jesus answered them, ‘Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up (NRSV, John 2:19).’

Let us pray.

Father, Jesus rose from the dead by power received from you but which he had made truly his own. We too shall pass through physical death not by some special invervention but because we have accepted your life and made it our own. We, like Jesus, will rise from the dead by our own power. Father, thank you for the gift of your life which truly becomes ours. May we grow in that life in every situation in this world and in the world to come.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Nov. 8: Thursday of the 31st Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

William James Webb, The Lost Sheep, Manchester City Galleries, 1864




Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 14:7-12
Responsorial Psalm: 27:1-4, 13-14
Gospel: Luke 15:1-10

“Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost (NRSV, Luke 15:6b).”

Let us pray.

Father, No matter how many times I turn away from you in sin, your Word is always present to me offering forgiveness and reconciliation in the Holy Spirit. I need not even ask. Your love pursues me without fail. How can I resist you when you demand nothing in return, only that I accept your divine life into my own and then grow in it at every moment?

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Nov. 7: Wednesday of the 31st Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Jean-François Millet, The Good Samaritan, National Museum and Gallery of Wales, Cardiff, 1846

Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 12:5-16
Responsorial Psalm: 131:1, 2, 3
Gospel: Luke 14:15-24

‘Love your neighbour as yourself (NRSV, Romans 13:9b).’

Let us pray.

Father, it is your one life that you share with all of us. We are all sisters and brothers, closer one to the other than we can possibly imagine. That the concern that I have for myself may be expressed towards all others, especially towards those most in need.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Nov. 6: Tuesday of the 31st Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Unknown, Parable of the Great Banquet, 1563


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 12:5-16
Responsorial Psalm: 131:1, 2, 3
Gospel: Luke 14:15-24

‘Then the master said to the slave, “Go out into the roads and lanes, and compel people to come in, so that my house may be filled (NRSV, Luke 14:23).”’

Let us pray.

Father, how difficult it is for us to realize that we are not the only ones, that you call everyone. Your Word is present to all, even from the womb, revealing to all once and for all, yet in every moment, the fullness of your truth, and summoning all to accept your gift of divine life and to grow in it in every situation. May we recognize in all of humanity our sisters and brothers. All are your children in grace.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Nov. 5: Monday of the 31st Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Jesus Mafa, The Poor Invited to the Feast


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 11:29-36
Responsorial Psalm: 69:30-31, 33-34, 36-37
Gospel: Luke 14:12-14

‘But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind(NRSV, Luke 14:13).’

Let us pray.

Father, If only I could recognize and accept how poor I am. There is nothing that I am or have that comes from me. All is gift from you, Father, through the Word, in the Holy Spirit. Sharers in your divine life, we are all brothers and sisters, poor in ourselves but rich in you. May I be ready therefore to share with others everything that I am and have, especially with those most in need, that we may all share your blessings one with the other.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.


Nov. 4: 31st Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C

Nicholas Papas, Zacchaeus in the Sycamore


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Wisdom 11:22--12:1
Responsorial Psalm: 145:1-2, 8-9, 10-11, 13, 14
Second Reading: Second Thessalonians 1:11--2:2
Gospel: Luke 19:1-10

All who saw it began to grumble and said, ‘He has gone to be the guest of one who is a sinner (NRSV, Luke 19:7).’

Let us pray.

Father, no matter how much we turn away from you in sin, you never abandon us. Your Word is always present to us offering us forgiveness and reconciliation even before it is asked. Jesus went to the house of Zacchaeus the tax collector which changed Zacchaeus' life. My your presence to us through Jesus, the Word now made flesh, bring us also to repentance for our sins that we may continue to grow in the divine life which you offer to us in every situation.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Nov. 3: Saturday of the 30th Week in Ordinary time, Year I

William Blake, Abraham and Isaac.

Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 11:1-2, 11-12, 25-29
Responsorial Psalm: 94:12-13, 14-15, 17-18
Gospel: Luke 14:1, 7-11

I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin (NRSV, Romans 11:1b).

Let us pray.

Father, of all peoples, Israel was the first to recognize you as God. Paul claimed to be a blood descendant of Abraham but also a descendant in faith. Everyone who accepts your life into their own is daughter and son to you and descendant of Abraham even as was Isaac. May we recognize each other, all of humanity, as sister and brother, and all of us, therefore, with Abraham, as your children. May your life and love fill us all and bring us as one family to eternity with you our only true father.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Nov. 2: The Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed

Ruth to Naomi: 'Wherever you go I will go, and wherever you stay I will stay.'

Readings for Mass
First Reading: Wisdom 3:1-9
Responsorial Psalm: 27:1, 4, 7, 8, 9, 13-14
Second Reading: Romans 6:3-9
Gospel: Matthew 25:31-46

Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life (NRSV, Romans 6:3-4).

Let us pray.

Father, your life that you share with us in Christ is one. It is one life that enlivens us all. We are all one with you through the Word in the Holy Spirit. The bounds that are forged here in this world, bonds of life and love, can never be broken. Our loved ones, indeed all of our sisters and brothers, are so intimately united with us that not even physical death can separate us. May the life that we all share, your life, be manifest in this world and beyond in all of our actions as we love, serve and encourage one another.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Nov. 1: Solemnity of All Saints

Fra Angelico, Christ Glorified in the Court of Heaven (detail), National Gallery, London, 1428-30


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Revelation 7:2-4, 9-14
Responsorial Psalm: 24:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
Second Reading: First John 3:1-3
Gospel: Matthew 5:1-12

‘Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb (NRSV, Revelation: 7:10b)!’

Let us pray.

Father, we are all your saints because we live in your divine life which you freely share with us. May we overcome the selfishness and sin which still distracts so many of us from the great destiny to which you call us. May we be inspired by the sanctity of those who have gone before that, in response to your grace, we may live like them and eventually join them to sing your praises in the court of heaven. May we, who still journey along the way, encourage one another that we may not slip and fall and, when we do, help each other in the power of your Spirit to begin again.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct 31: Wednesday of the 30th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Gianlorenzo Bernini, Holy Spirit from The Throne of Saint Peter, San Pietro, Vatican, 1657-66

Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 8:26-30
Responsorial Psalm: 13:4-5, 6
Gospel: Luke 13:22-30

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words (NRSV, Romans 8:26).

Let us pray.

Father, alone we are nothing. It is in the Holy Spirit given to us through the ever-present Word that we have our being, our physical life and our share in your divine life. Everything for us begins in the Holy Spirit. It is in the power of the Spirit that from the womb, when, without words or logic, we were first able to say “yes” to you and receive your gift of life. When we pray it is really the Spirit enabling us to pray just as in everything we do, especially loving and serving one another, it is the Spirit that empowers us. May we be ever responsive to the promptings of that same Holy Spirit.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 30: Tuesday of the 30th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

The Mustard Tree



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 8:18-25
Responsorial Psalm: 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6
Gospel: Luke 13:18-21

‘The Kingdom of God is like a mustard seed that someone took and sowed in the garden; it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches (NRSV, Luke 13:19).’

Let us pray.

Father, it is with great rejoicing that we accept the gift of your life into our own. There is nothing that can stand in the way of your life and power. Filled with your life, healing went out from Jesus to all who met him and he was able to pass victoriously through death. The life that you share with Jesus you share with everyone who will accept it. And we have the possibility of growing in that life throughout all of eternity.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 29: Monday of the 30th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Alexander Master, Christ Heals a Woman Bent-over and the Parable of the Fig Tree, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, c. 1430


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 8:12-17
Responsorial Psalm: 68:2, 4, 6-7, 20-21
Gospel: Luke 13:10-17

‘And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen long years, be set free from this bondage on the sabbath day (NRSV, Luke 13:16)?’

Let us pray.

Father, in every situation in which we find ourselves you are there calling us out of that situation to a better reality, a freedom that is more free. We find ourselves always enslaved whether by the Egyptians or the Babylonians or laws of our own making. We set aside a day to worship you and then we make of it a day that is burdensome and oppression for those in need. May we be ready at all times to break out of each and every situation and grow in your life that you always offer us and in our understanding of you and the future to which you call us.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen

Oct. 28: 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C

Christian Dare, The Pharisee and the Publican


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Sirach 35:12-14, 16-18
Responsorial Psalm: 34:2-3, 17-18, 19, 23
Second Reading: Second Timothy 4:6-8, 16-18
Gospel: Luke 18:9-14

‘I tell you, this man went down to his home justified rather than the other; for all who exalt themselves will be humbled, but all who humble themselves will be exalted (NRSV, Luke 18:14).’

Let us pray.

Father, everything I am and everything I have comes from you. Of myself I am nothing. And even then, what I have received from you, I do not always use rightly but surrender myself to selfishness and sin. How grateful I must be that you, Father, in every situation offer me forgiveness and reconciliation. May I be ever more responsive to your kindness and make better use of your gifts, growing in humble acceptance of your freely bestowed life.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 27: Saturday of the 29th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

John Singer Sargent, Study of a Fig Tree, Private Collection, 1908



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 8:1-11
Responsorial Psalm: 24:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
Gospel: Luke 13:1-9

"‘The gardener replied, “Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig round it and put manure on it (NRSV, Luke 13:8).'"

Let us pray.

Father, how loving and patient you are. You offer us, through the Word in the Holy Spirit, a share in your own divine life and the possibility to grow in it at every moment. And yet, so often, we turn away from you and say “No.” Still, in spite of our sins, you are always there offering us forgiveness and reconciliation even before we ask. Father, may we turn from our sinful ways and accept your love and generosity, you who are our only true Future.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 26: Friday of the 29th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Unknown Normand, Christ and a Believer, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, c.1180


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 7:18-25
Responsorial Psalm: 119:66, 68, 76, 77, 93, 94
Gospel: Luke 12:54-59

Teach me good judgement and knowledge, for I believe in your commandments (NRSV, Psalm 119:66).

Let us pray.

Father, even from the womb, before I could speak and reason, you taught me through the Word, ever present to me, in the Holy Spirit. May I always be open to your Word, spoken once and for all, yet in every moment, that I may grow in my knowledge of you as I grow in your life which you share with me. May my understanding received as gift lead me to share your life in love with my sisters and brothers, all of us united with you as you share your life with the Word in the Holy Spirit who is Love.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.


Oct. 25: Thursday of the 29th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Tivadar Csontváry Kosztka, Pilgrimage to the Cedars of Lebanon

Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 6:19-23
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 1:1-2, 3, 4, 6
Gospel: Luke 12:49-53


They are like trees planted by streams of water, which yield their fruit in its season, and their leaves do not wither. In all that they do, they prosper (NRSV, Psalm 1:3).

Let us pray.

Father, trees spring up out of fertile ground watered by flowing streams. May we too be planted firmly in the rich, watered soil of your grace that we may grow in stature bearing fruit in all that we do. Of ourselves we would wither and die and return to the nothingness from which we have come. In you all things are possible as we serve you in our sisters and brothers.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 24: Wednesday of the 29th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

William Blake, Glad Day, 1795
Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 6:12-18
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 124:1-3, 4-6, 7-8
Gospel: Luke 12:39-48


Present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and present your members to God as instruments of righteousness (NRSV, Romans 6:13b).

Let us pray.

Father, may we rejoice in every moment because, even from the womb, and for many effectively celebrated in baptism, we are truly resurrected beings. We are called to share now, in this physical world, the gift of your divine life which, made are own, enables us to pass victoriously through death. May all of our actions bear witness to this resurrection, never surrendering to sin, but always going out to one another in loving service.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 23: Tuesday of the 29th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Anonymous French Master, Here I am, Lord, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, c. 1200

Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 5:12, 15, 17-19, 20-21
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 40:7-8, 8-9, 10, 17
Gospel: Luke 12:35-38

Then I said, ‘Here I am; I delight to do your will, O my God (NRSV, Psalm 40: 7a.8a).’

Let us pray.

Father, how difficult it often is to say “Yes,” even to the great gift of your own divine life that you, in every situation, always offer us through your Word in the Holy Spirit. Yet here I am, Lord, ready to do your will. May I be faithful to you as you are to all of your daughters and sons. May your life strengthen me that I may always be ready to serve you as you call me to grow constantly in your life and power. May your life, so freely given, flow through me to others in acts of loving service.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct 22: Monday of the 29th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Rembrandt van Rijn, The Parable of the Rich Man (detail), Gemäldegalerie, Berlin, 1627


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 4:20-25
Responsorial Psalm: Luke 1:69-70, 71-72, 73-75
Gospel: Luke 12:13-21

And Jesus said to them, ‘Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions (NRSV, Luke 12:15).’

Let us pray.

Father, there are so many important realities within the world that demand our attention. Our possessions are the least of them. But still there is the temptation to make any of them, even the seemingly most important, the focus of our life. Jesus, your Word made flesh, teaches us that it is you, Father, and your coming kingdom, that is the one reality that truly matters. May we make you, Father, the center and focus of everything that we are and do, and then order all other realities under this first and foremost choice. May we live for you, Father, our only true future.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 21: 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C

John Everett Millais, Victory, O Lord, Manchester City Galleries, 1871


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Exodus 17:8-13
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 121:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8
Second Reading: Second Timothy 3:14--4:2
Gospel: Luke 18:1-8

Jesus told his disciples a parable about the necessity for them to pray always without becoming weary (NRSV, Luke 18:1).

Let us pray.

Father, your being is your existence and you exist in an ever present now. You do not do this or that. You just act. It is in prayer that we allow ourselves to be open to your eternal presence. To be truly effective for us, our prayer must be constant that we may remains always conscious of your unchanging life and power that you offer to us in every situation. May each moment be an occasion for us to welcome you into our lives and to say “Yes” to the great gift of our life that you share with us. Our prayer cannot change you, O Lord, because you do not change but prayer can and should change us that we may manifest your constant life and presence to all of our sisters and brothers and to the world around us.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct 20: Saturday in the 28th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Raphael, La Disputa (detail), Stanza della Segnatura, Vatican



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 4:13, 16-18
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 105:6-7, 8-9, 42-43
Gospel: Luke 12:8-12


'When they bring you before the synagogues, the rulers, and the authorities, do not worry about how you are to defend yourselves or what you are to say; for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that very hour what you ought to say (NRSV, Luke 12:11-12).’

Let us pray.

Father, You speak to us once and for all, at every moment, at the depth of our being, through the Word, in the Holy Spirit. So often because we are created beings, because of the historical situation in which we find oursleves, because of our common sinfulness and our own personal sins, we fail to hear well or even listen. You speak to us of everything that we need to know and do. May we always be sensitive to your Word spoken in the Holy Spirit that we may come to understand you, Father, more fully and open ourselves to further growth in the gift of your divine life.


Through Christ our Lord. Amen

Oct 19: Memorial of Saint John de Brébeuf and Saint Isaac Jogues, priests and martyrs, and their companions, martyrs

Anonymous French Master, Abraham, Bible Historiale, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, c. 1375


Readings for Mass
(Friday of the 28th week in Ordinary Time, Year I)
First Reading: Romans 4:1-8
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 32:1-2, 5, 11
Gospel: Luke 12:1-7

‘Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness (NRSV, Romans 4:3b).’

Let us pray.

Father, you are the source, the origin, of all that is. Even the Word is begotten of you. The Holy Spirit proceeds from you. Everything we are, everything we have, everything we can become, all has its beginnng in you. All we can do, Father, is to say "Yes," to accept the gift of your divine life and let it fill us and transform us. Without faith, without saying "Yes" to you, we are nothing at all. In every situation, by saying "Yes" to your gift, may we not only grow in your life but may that same life go out from us in good works to change the world to the benefit of all of our sisters and brothers.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 18: Feast of St. Luke, evangelist

Pontormo, St. Luke, Santa Felicità, Florence, c. 1525


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Second Timothy 4:9-17
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 145:10-11, 12-13, 17-18
Gospel: Luke 10:1-9

Your faithful shall speak of the glory of your kingdom, and tell of your power, to make known to all people your mighty deeds, and the glorious splendour of your kingdom (NRSV, Psalm 145:11-12).

Let us pray.

Father, as we freely and gratefully accept the gift of your divine life into our own lives, transformed by that gift, we cannot help but proclaim to our sisters and brothers the glory that is yours and the life and love that you so graciously desire to share with us all. Listening to your Word ever present and speaking to us in every moment, we too must speak to others of the wonders that we have experienced and to which all are called.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 17: Memorial of St. Ignatius of Antioch, bishop and martyr

El Greco, The Repentant Peter, The Phillips Collection, Washington, c. 1600


Readings for Mass
(Wednesday of the 28th week in Ordinary Time, Year I))
First Reading: Romans 2:1-11
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 62:2-3, 6-7, 9
Gospel: Luke 11:42-46


Or do you despise the riches of God's kindness and forbearance and patience? Do you not realize that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance (NRSV, Romans, 2:4)?


Let us pray.


Father, may we learn of your kindness, your forbearance, and your patience that lead us to repentance. You refuse to allow us to wallow in our sinfulness but are unrelenting in your pursuit of us. Nothing will hinder your winning us over to your love and forgiveness neither in this world or in the world to come. The Word, now made flesh in Jesus, is always present to us calling us home to you. May we turn away from sin and selfishness in this moment of decsion and begin to live only for you.


Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 16: Tuesday of the 28th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Jacob Jordaens, Christ Disputing with the Pharisees



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Romans 1:16-25
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 19:2-3, 4-5
Gospel: Luke 11:37-41


So give for alms those things that are within; and see, everything will be clean for you (NRSV, Luke 11:41).

Let us pray.


Father, as we say "yes" to you in the Holy Spirit through the Word, may the gift of your life so transform us that not only our external actions may be brought more fully into conformity to what is right and good but that everything we are, the totality of our being, what is within and without, may manifest your goodness. May we also grow constantly in our understanding of who you are that such increasing knowledge may be further expressed in all that we are.


Through Christ our Lord. Amen.


Oct. 15: Memorial of Saint Teresa of Avila, virgin and doctor

Pieter Lastmam, Jonah and the Whale


Readings for Mass
Monday of the 28th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I
First Reading: Romans 1:1-7
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 98:1, 2-3, 3-4
Gospel: Luke 11:29-32


For just as Jonah became a sign to the people of Nineveh, so the Son of Man will be to this generation (NRSV, Luke 11:30).


Let us pray.


Father, Jonah was swallowed up by the whale and went to the depths for three days before he was delivered to preach repentance to the people of Nineveh. Jesus went down into death for three days before his glorious resurrection which effectively announced salvation for the people. Death then resurrection. Father, may we accept death to self at every moment that we may be ever reborn more fully into the divine life that you always offers us through the Word. May constant death and resurrection in this life empower us to pass victoriously into the world to come where you are the fulfillment of everything that is.


Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 14: 28th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C

Anonymous German Master, The Naaman Plaque
The British Museum, London, 12th cent.

Readings for Mass
First Reading: Second Kings 5:14-17
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 98:1, 2-3, 3-4
Second Reading: Second Timothy 2:8-13
Gospel: Luke 17:11-19

Then Naaman returned to the man of God, he and all his company; he came and stood before him and said, ‘Now I know that there is no God in all the earth except in Israel; please accept a present from your servant (NRSV, 2Kings 5:15).’


Let us pray.

Father, how often when we receive a gift, especially if it is healing and new life from you, we want somehow to pay for it. The history of religion is filled with stories of efforts to repay divine gifts or of efforts to curry divine favor. A gift is freely given and everything that we receive from you, Father, is truly gift. All we can do is rejoice in it and be thankful. We pray that we may accept the gift of divine life joyfully and allow it to fill our lives and transform us into new creatures. May we thus get caught up in the life of the Trinity, of giving, receiving and sharing in love, which is the only true sacrifice.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 13: Saturday of the 27th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Johann Christoph Weigel, The True Family of Christ, from Biblia ectypa: Bildnussen auss Heiliger Schrifft Alt und Neuen Testaments
Pitt Theological Library, 1695



Readings for Mass

First Reading: Joel 4:12-21
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 97:1-2, 5-6, 11-12
Gospel: Luke 11:27-28

While he was saying this, a woman in the crowd raised her voice and said to him, ‘Blessed is the womb that bore you and the breasts that nursed you!’ But he said, ‘Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it (NRSV, Luke 11:27-28)!’

Let us pray.

Father, as important as blood relations are, what really binds us together as family is your life shared among us. May we not only listen to your Word ever present to us but may we accept the challenge to receive your life into our own and to grow in it at every moment.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.



Oct. 12: Friday of the 27th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Salvator Dali, Blow the Trumpet in Sion


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Joel 1:13-15; 2:1-2
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 9:2-3, 6, 16, 8-9
Gospel: Luke 11:15-26

Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy mountain (NRSV, Joel 2:1)!

Let us pray.

Father, Joel warns us that the Day of the Lord is comng and that we must prepare lest we be lost. Your Word, now made flesh, is ever present to us speaking once and for all in every situation, calling us to decide. This moment for us is the decisive one because what we do now contains our whole future, everything that we can possibly become. Jesus in his public ministry preached the same message: Now is the moment to decide. May we be faithful to that challenge and say "yes" to your offer of divine life and growth in it. May this moment govern every moment of our future life as hopefully we move ever closer and closer to you, our only real Future.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 11: Thursday of the 27th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Unknown Illustrator of Vie de Jésus Mafa, The Insistent Friend


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Malachi 3:13-20
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 1:1-2, 3, 4, 6
Gospel: Luke 11:5-13

'If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him (NRSV, Luke 11:13)!’

Let us pray.

Father, in our foolishness we ask for so many things, for this and then for that, never ceasing. If only we could realize that there is one gift that you offer us always even before our asking, the gift of a share in your own divine life, offered always through your Word in the Holy Spirit. May our prayers rather conform ourselves to this one great gift that empowers us to do all that need be done. In every moment, encouraged by our prayers, may we grow in the gift of your divine life and share it with our sisters and brothers through loving service.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct 10: Wednesday of the 27th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Anonymous French Master, Christ Teaching the Lord's Prayer
Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, c. 1200


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Jonah 4:1-11
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 86:3-4, 5-6, 9-10
Gospel: Luke 11:1-4


Jesus was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples (NRSV, Luke 11:1).’


Let us pray.

Father, may we continue to learn from Jesus, the Word now made flesh, always present to us. May we come to understand that prayer which gives you praise and glory cannot change you because you cannot change. We are always in your presence, Father, but prayer brings us consciously into that presence and prepares us to accept your forgiveness and reconciliation, to accept more fully the share in your life always offered to us. We are the ones who must change through prayer. Through prayer may we grow constantly in your life and power sharing everything with our sisters and brothers through loving them in the Holy Spirit.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 9: Tuesday of the 27th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Jan Vermeer van Delft, Christ in the House of Martha and Mary
National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh, 1654


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Jonah 3:1-10
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 130:1-2, 3-4, 7-8
Gospel: Luke 10:38-42


But the Lord answered her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her (NRSV, Luke 10:41-42).’

Let us pray.

Father, Jesus has taught us that there is only one thing that matters and that is your coming kingdom. That is the reality that Jesus challenges us to accept and all of life's other decisions must be organized under it. How easy it is for us to be distracted by so many things, however important they may seem to be, when there is one choice that must govern all of the others and under which the others find their proper place. May all that we are and do, Father, find its center and focus in you.


Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 8: Monday of the 27th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Johann Christoph Weigel, Jonah Flees,
from Biblia ectypa: Bildnussen auss Heiliger Schrifft Alt und Neuen Testaments, 1695



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Jonah 1:1--2:1, 11
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 2:2, 3, 4, 5, 8
Gospel: Luke 10:25-37

But Jonah set out to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid his fare and went on board, to go with them to Tarshish, away from the presence of the Lord (Jonah 1:3).

Let us pray.

Father, what makes us to be human beings is not, as many argue, the gift of reason. It is your constant presence to us through your Word offering us in the Holy Spirit a share in your divine life. There is no way that we can escape your presence, not only because you are everywhere as the universal cause, but because your very presence defines our humanity. Poor Jonah who did not recognize the life and power that you offer to all that enables us to accomplish whatever needs to to be done. May we rejoice in the great gift of our life and allow your love that is the Holy Spirit to fill us and go out from us to all of our sisters and brothers.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 7: 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C

Bible moralisée, Habakuk, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, 1465



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Habakkuk 1:2-3, 2:2-4
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 95:1-2, 6-7, 8-9
Second Reading: Second Timothy 1:6-8, 13-14
Gospel: Luke 17:5-10

O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not listen (NRSV, Habakuk 1:2)?

Let us pray.

So often, Father, we cry out with the prophet Habakuk lamenting the violence and oppression around us and plead for deliverance. Do we not realize that a share in divine life and great power has been given to us, if only we will recognize it and use it? To call out in misery and to beseech deliverance only leave us paralyzed in the face of the evil and suffering around us. Rather let us ask ourselves what it is that we must do that the present situation, instead of being curse, may be transformed into blessing for ourselves and others. Then the life and power given to us, and truly ours, will be unleashed. Healing and vindication will radiate out from us. If only we have faith and hope!

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 6: Saturday of the 26th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

William Blake, The Fall of Satan, from The Book or Job, 1825


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Baruch 4:5-12, 27-29
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 69:33-35, 36-37
Gospel: Luke 10:17-24

Jesus said to them, ‘I watched Satan fall from heaven like a flash of lightning (NRSV, Luke 10:18).

Let us pray.

Father, you have given us a share in your own divine life and now you send us forth to combat evil with great power. There is nothing that can withstand the strength that you have given to us. May we be ever faithful to the charge that you have given us as you are always faithful to us.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen

Oct. 5: Friday of the 26th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Master of Evert Zoudenbalch, The People including Ezekiel are Deported to Babylon, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, 1435


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Baruch 1:15-22
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 79:1-2, 3-5, 8, 9
Gospel: Luke 10:13-16

"Justice is with the Lord, our God; and we today are flushed with shame (NAB, Baruch 1:15a).”

Let us pray.

Father, whenever we forget you and the great gift that you share with us in bestowing your own life upon us, inevitably we surrender to sin. With you we can accomplish everything that needs to be done but without you we can do nothing. We are covered in shame. May we turn back from our sinful ways, accept your forgiveness always offered, and once again grow in your divine life.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen

Oct. 4: Memorial of Saint Francis of Assisi, religious

Gustave Doré, Ezra Reading the Law in the Hearing of the People



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Nehemiah 8:1-4, 5-6, 7-12
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 19:8, 9, 10, 11
Gospel: Luke 10:1-12

And Nehemiah, who was the governor, and Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all the people, ‘This day is holy to the Lord your God; do not mourn or weep.’ For all the people wept when they heard the words of the law (NRSV, Nehemiah 8:9).

Let us pray.

Father, the people, returned to Jerusalem, rejoiced to hear your Word read to them. If only we could all realize that your Word is spoken to us in the depth of our being in every moment in every situation even from the womb. May we listen carefully, as did the people of Jerusalem on that day, that we may hear and understand more fully all that you speak to us.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen

Oct. 3: Wednesday of the 26th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Philip Hermogenes Calderon, By the Waters of Babylon, Tate, London, 1852




Readings for Mass
First Reading: Nehemiah 2:1-8
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 137:1-2, 3, 4-5, 6
Gospel: Luke 9:57-62


By the rivers of Babylon—there we sat down and there we wept when we remembered Zion (NRSV, Psalm 137:1).

Let us pray.


Father, how often we regret our lost innocence, how it must have been before we sinned personally. But, you, O Lord, are there at every moment, in every place, offering us forgiveness and reconciliation through the Word in the power of the Holy Spirit. You who are all present have no past to remember but rather call us to share in your eternal present, to enjoy the free gift of your divine life and to grow in it in every created moment.


Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 2: Memorial of the Guardian Angels

Alexander Master, Christ Sets a Child Among the Disciples, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, c. 1430


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Exodus 23:20-23
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 91:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 10-11
Gospel: Matthew 18:1-5, 10

Jesus said, ‘Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven (NRSV, Matthew 18:3).'

Let us pray.

Father, the child is totally dependant for everything upon others. The child can make no claim of its own. We too must learn that everything we have and are, Father, comes from you. We too can make no claim of our own. May we come to realize that all is gift from you, gift to be received and rejoiced in but over which we can make no claim. May we thus become like little children, yes, but little children, because of the gift of divine life, capable of doing everything that needs be done, even passing victoriously through death itself.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Oct. 1: Memorial of Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus, virgin and doctor of the Church

Irv Davis, Jerusalem Psalms, 2000



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Zechariah 8:1-8
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 102:16-18, 19-21, 29, 22-23
Gospel: Luke 9:46-50


Thus says the Lord: I will return to Zion, and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem; Jerusalem shall be called the faithful city, and the mountain of the Lord of hosts shall be called the holy mountain (NRSV, Zechariah 8:3).


Let us pray.


Father, so often, even to your prophets who listen so attentively to the one Word spoken to all, you seem absent from your people who look forward to your return. But, Father, you are always with your people offering us a share in your divine life and challenging us to grow in that life. It is we, blinded by our sinfulness, who must return to you who are the one, true, faithful one. Father, may we find your holy city Jerusalem, not merely as promise, but as reality wherever we are.


Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Sept. 30: 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C

Lazarus in the Bosom of Abraham, Abbey of St-Pierre, Moissac, France, 650-850



Readings for Mass
First Reading: Amos 6:1, 4-7
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 146:7, 8-9, 9-10
Second Reading: First Timothy 6:11-16
Gospel: Luke 16:19-31



‘Abraham said to the rich man, “If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead (NRSV, Luke 16:31).” ’

Let us pray.

Father, our proclaiming the resurrection of Jesus merely in words can be taken as just an idle tale. It is only in living out in our own lives the power of the resurrection, the divine life that Jesus himself accepted and made his own, that faith in the resurrection can be made credible for others. As we have had resurrection faith mediated to us by those before us who believed and led transformed lives, may our lives as well be transformed by your life given to us that others may also come to accept our belief in the resurrection.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Sept 29: Michael, Gabriel, Raphael, Archangels


Gustave Doré's Illustrations to the Divine Comedy, Paradiso Canto 31


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14, or Revelation 12:7-12
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 138:1-2, 2-3, 4-5
Gospel: John 1:47-51

A thousand thousand served him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood attending him (NRSV, Daniel 7:10b).

Let us pray.

Father, even on our journey to your heavenly court, may we who accept a share of your divine life into our own, together with all of your heavenly court, stand before you in awe and offer you glory and honour and praise.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Sept. 28: Friday of the 25th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Giovanni Bellini, Dead Christ Supported by Angels, Pinacoteca Communale, Rimini, 1474





Readings for Mass
First Reading: Haggai 1:15-2:9
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 43:1, 2, 3, 4
Gospel: Luke 9:18-22


‘The Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised (NRSV, Lk 9:22).’

Let us pray.

Father, physical death, literally having to let go of everything that we have and are, is a milestone on our journey to you that none can escape. May we accept death as a summing up of how every moment of earthly life should be lived. With Jesus may we pass through death in total surrender placing our complete trust in you.

Through Christ out Lord. Amen.





Sept. 27: Thursday of the 25th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Bible moralisée, Haggai speaks to Zerubbabel and Joshua, son of Josedech, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, The Hague, c.1465

Readings for Mass
First Reading: Haggai 1:1-8
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 149:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 9
Gospel: Luke 9:7-9

Thus says the Lord of hosts: Consider how you have fared. Go up to the hills and bring wood and build the house, so that I may take pleasure in it and be honoured, says the Lord (NRSV, Haggai 1:7-8).

Let us pray,

Father, even your prophet Haggai understood you as desiring a dwelling for your own pleasure and honour. What does it take for us to learn that festivals and places of worship are for us, not you, because they enable us to focus our thoughts and our prayers more fully on you? May we rejoice in sacred time and sacred space as they encourage us to make you and your coming kingdom the center and goal of everything that we are and do.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Sept. 26: Wednesday of the 25th week in Ordinary Time, Year I

Gustave Doré, The Rebuilding of the Temple


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Ezra 9:5-9
Responsorial Psalm: Tobit 13:2, 3-4, 6, 7-8, 6
Gospel: Luke 9:1-6

‘For we are slaves; yet our God has not forsaken us in our slavery, but has extended to us his steadfast love before the kings of Persia, to give us new life to set up the house of our God, to repair its ruins, and to give us a wall in Judea and Jerusalem (NRSV, Ezra 9:9).’

Let us pray.

Father, your prophet Ezra understood that you give your people new life. What he failed to grasp is that this new life is your very own divine life which you offer to us in every situation, in every time and place, through your Word always present to us. The Jews, returning from Babylon, sought to rebuild the Temple that you might once again find an abode among them, not realizing that all are called in their humanity to be temples of your Holy Spirit, with you living within us. May we grow in that divine life in every moment, now and into eternity.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Sept. 25: Tuesday of the 25th Week in Ordinary time, Year I

Max Fürst, Mary Seeks Her Son


Readings for Mass
First Reading: Ezra 6:7-8, 12, 14-20
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 122:1-2, 3-4, 4-5
Gospel: Luke 8:19-21

But Jesus said to them, "My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it (NRSV, Luke 8:21)."

Let us pray.

Father, our physical family, mother and father, sisters and brothers, spouse and children, are so very important for us. But of far greater importance is the family of your divine life that we are all called to share. Physical life is one thing but the life that you share with everyone who will accept you creates a family of divine significance, a family for eternity. In faith may we recognize you as really and truly father to us and Jesus as our brother for eternal life. We pray that our physical family may be one in you and with all who believe in you.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.