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Lifelong Catechesis

Forming Catholic identity across generations
September 20, 2019
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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

Twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reading I : Sirach 3:17-18, 20, 28-29

Conduct your affairs with humility.

  • Today's first reading gives us the wisdom of Ben Sira, a second-century Jerusalem sage.
  • Because of the upper-class situation of the sage and his students, today’s lesson on humility is dramatic.
  • The final verses introduce a favorite subject of Ben Sira, the giving of alms.

Reading II : Hebrews 12:18-19, 22-24a

You have drawn near to the city of the living God.

  • In today's reading from Hebrews the image of the Israelites at Mount Sinai is colored with details from the book of Exodus and other Old Testament passages.
  • The gloomy and fearful aspects of the old covenant experience are emphasized in contrast to the picture of Mount Zion.
  • Christians do not have to live in fear of imitating the failures of certain figures in the history of salvation, for they have the advantage of the person of Jesus, who sealed the new covenant in his own blood.

Gospel : Luke 14:1, 7-14

Whoever exalts self shall be humbled and whoever humbles self will be exalted.

  • In today's Gospel, Luke presents a scene with Jesus in the home of a Pharisee.
  • Jesus addresses the guests in the house with a parable that warns against self-exaltation. This lesson comes soon after the disciples were reprimanded by Jesus for vying for position.
  • Jesus' words to the host point out that the kingdom is for everyone, and our hospitality is to embrace all, especially those who are overlooked.