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Lifelong Catechesis

Forming Catholic identity across generations
January 20, 2018
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Ordinary Time

For a large part of the liturgical year, we devote ourselves to listening to the mystery of Christ in all its aspects unfolded as we seek God's truth and understanding.

Sunday Readings and Backgrounds

Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reading I : Sirach 35:12-14, 16-18

The Lord is a God of justice.

  • In the ancient Near East, it was the king's special duty to care for the most helpless members of the society.
  • In Israel, God was the Most High King, and so those who were orphaned, widowed, and oppressed were the special concern of God.
  • The basic principle of Israelite law was to be like God.

Reading II : 2 Timothy 4:6-8, 16-18

I have fought the good fight.

  • The section from the Second Letter of Paul to Timothy includes a description of Paul's expectation of reward for his faithful service.
  • Today's letter emphasizes that death endured with Jesus will result in life with him.
  • Paul anticipated divine protection for his continued faithful service.

Gospel : Luke 18:9-14

Everyone who exalts him or herself shall be humbled.

  • In the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector, Jesus contrasts the attitudes of two people praying.
  • The paradox here is that the prayer of the tax collector was preferred by God.
  • In the parable, Jesus once again combats the self-righteous attitudes that threaten spiritual growth.