Twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C

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Lectionary: 126
Read the Gospel: Luke 14:1, 7-14

Gospel Summary

Jesus often had confrontations with some of the religious leaders about meals or the Sabbath. He was sure to be tested in the circumstances of today’s Gospel since he was eating a meal with the religious leaders on the Sabbath! At the meal, Jesus noticed that the guests hurried to recline at the place of honor. He taught them that when they were invited to a wedding feast, they should sit at the lowest place. If they sat at the highest place and someone higher than they came in, their host would approach the lower guest and ask him to move down. This, of course, would be a source of humiliation. Instead, if the guest took the lower seat, the host would come to him as a friend and invite him to take a higher seat. Then, all would look on this person with great admiration. Jesus also advised them on giving a dinner. Instead of inviting close friends and relatives and all the people who might repay the invitation, Jesus encouraged his listeners to invite those who could never reciprocate. Jesus explained that by doing this the host’s place would be insured at the heavenly banquet.

Reflection for Families

Most often the role of a parent is cast in humility. When we think back on our own childhoods, even if we have taken the time to tell our parents how much we appreciate all they did for us, children rarely take in the whole scope of what their parents do for them. Yes, in some cases we might even say what parents sacrifice for them, but it’s hard to call something a sacrifice when it’s given out of love. Still, parents know what it means to provide for someone who cannot repay us. We don’t expect our children to repay us financially for what we’ve given them in food, clothing, shelter, education, and entertainment. Not only is it not realistic, but it’s just not the way it works! We understand the meaning of this Gospel in connection with our children, but how much greater our understanding will be if we reach beyond our own family to provide for someone in our society who cannot begin to repay us.

Bringing the Gospel into Your Family

Using your parish bulletin, local newspaper, or knowledge you have of your community, find someone or a group of people who cannot repay a kindness from you. Decide as a family what you will do to serve this person or group. Perhaps you can help serve a meal at a soup kitchen or hunger center. Maybe you can provide clothing or transportation to a family struggling at this time. You might look for non-profit organizations that rely on volunteers in order to provide services to the community. When you have finished your service experience, read this passage again and share together how you lived the Gospel message this week.

Discussion Starters

  1. The most humble person I know is . . . What makes him/her humble is . . .
  2. An experience I had of honor happened when . . . I responded (or did not respond) humbly by . . .
  3. This reading makes me pay attention to the way I . . .