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Thirty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A

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Lectionary: 154
Read the Gospel: Matthew 25:1-13

Gospel Summary
Jesus told the story about ten maidens waiting for a bridegroom to return home with his new bride. Most likely he had been delayed at her home working out the negotiations for her with the bride's father. Five of the maidens came with enough oil to keep their lamps burning through the night. The other five foolishly brought none. This passage is clearly about the end times and our being ready for it. The maidens needed oil to keep their lamps burning in order to be ready for the bridegroom. The message for us relates back to the Great Commandment we read about two weeks ago. We need to love God and our neighbors to insure that our lamps are ready for the end time.

Reflection for Families
Sometimes we grow impatient when we read the scriptures that anticipate Christ's return. After all, it's been two thousand years and not a word! It's easy for all of us to be lulled into complacency by such silence. But we not only have a responsibility to ourselves to be prepared, we must impress upon our children the importance of being ready for Jesus when he returns. One way to do this is show our children how the Kingdom of God has already begun. Even though the Kingdom is not complete yet, we can point out signs where life today is in some ways already like the Kingdom. For example people loving one another, caring for one another, and reaching out to one another in kindness, are all ways that point toward the coming Kingdom.

Bringing the Gospel Into Your Family
As a family, commit to work together to bring about God's Kingdom. Think about one person you know at school, at work, or in your neighborhood who might not be ready for Christ's return. Reach out to them with a gesture or act that will show them God's love. At the evening meal, or bedtime prayers, share with one another how you were a symbol of the coming Kingdom today.

Discussion Starters

  1. I remember being caught off guard once like the five foolish maidens. I felt...
  2. One thing I need to do to be better prepared for Jesus' return is...
  3. Someone I have known who was like the five wise maidens is...because...

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