THE BREAD OF LIFE

                     CATHOLIC BIBLE STUDY



Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.



FIRST DAY Reread last week’s readings.


  1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or from

        the homily you heard on Sunday?



  1. From what you learned, what personal application did you

        choose to apply to your life this week?





    (“…he waited on them under the tree while they ate.”)


  1. To whom did the Lord appear by the great tree at Mamre, where  was he sitting, and what was happening to the day? 

     Genesis 18-l



  1. When he looked up, what did he see and what did he do?      Genesis 18:2


 3. What are two of these men called? Genesis 19:1



  1. What did Abraham say to them? Genesis 18:3



  1. Why did he want to bring them water? Genesis 18:4



  1. What did Abraham call himself, and why did he want them to  have food?  Genesis 18:5


  1. How did Abraham enter the tent, and what did he say to his wife, Sarah?  Genesis 18:6



  1. How did he go to the herd, and after picking out a tender choice steer, to whom did he give it for preparation? 

     Genesis 18:7


  1. What else did he get for them, and what did he do, and      continue to do as they sat eating under the tree? Genesis 18:8



  1. What did they ask Abraham, what was his reply, what did one of      them say about Sarah and what was Sarah doing? Genesis 18:9-10


Personal – In what way do you show hospitality to those passing your way?  Who are the messengers of the Lord in your life?  How do you treat them?




       (“Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake,”)


  1. Who is speaking in verses 24-28 of Colossians, and to what is     he a minister?  Colossians 1:23



  1. Where does he find his joy? Colossians 1:24



  1. Where does he fill up what is lacking in the sufferings of Christ, and for whose sake does he do this?  Colossians 1:24



  1. What does he call his body? Colossians 1:24



  1. What did Paul become to this church, through the commission of whom, and to do what?  Colossians 1:25



  1. To whom has he revealed the mystery that was hidden from ages and generations past?  Colossians 1:26



  1. What is the mystery that God has willed to make known?      Colossians 1:27



  1. What is this for which you hope? Colossians 1:27



  1. What are we to proclaim, and how are we to do it?     Colossians 1:28



  1. What is useful for teaching and admonishing one another?      2 Timothy 3:16


Personal – In what way has the mystery of Christ in you been revealed to others?  When did you first realize that he dwells in you, and what change took place in you when you realized this?


FOURTH DAY            READ LUKE 10:38-42               GOSPEL


             (“There is need of only one thing.”)


  1. Who welcomed Jesus to her home, and where was this located?      Luke 10:38, John 11:l



  1. What was her sister’s name, and what two things did she do?      Luke 10:39



  1. What did God the Father tell us to do? Mark 9:7



  1. What did Moses say about Jesus? Deut. 18:15 and Acts 3:22



  1. With what was Martha busy, and what did she say to Jesus?         Luke 10:40



  1. What did Martha tell Jesus to do? Luke 10:40



  1. What was the Lord’s reply? Luke 10:41


  1. What is the one thing only that is required? Psalm 27:4



  1. Who had chosen the better portion? Luke 10:42



  1. What did he say would not happen to Mary? Luke 10:42



Personal –  This past week in what way have you not been distracted by duty in order to sit at the feet of Jesus and listen to him?  In what way have you heard his voice and responded?  Share this with someone.

 FIFTH DAY              READ PSALM 15:2-5

              (“He who walks blamelessly and does justice,”)

 Read and meditate on Psalm 15:2-5.

 What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?


How can you apply this to your life?



                         GENESIS 18:1-10

      The story illustrates near Eastern hospitality in several ways.  In Abraham’s day, a person’s reputation was largely connected to his hospitality, in the sharing of his home and food.  Even traveling strangers were accorded treatment that would be given to highly honored guests.  Meeting another’s need for food or shelter was and still is today one of the most immediate and practical ways to obey God and do his will.

     We can see Abraham trying to get a cool breeze and looking out of the opening of his tent on a very hot day in the desert.  He probably was startled when he saw the three men coming toward him.  He immediately gave them all of his attention.  He addressed one of his guests as “my lord” and yet he addressed himself as a servant.  He acted like they would be doing him a favor by letting him serve them and attend to their needs.  He washed their feet in accordance with the local custom.  This was not only a pleasant comfort but also a sign of genuine respect.  This was a courtesy to refresh a traveler in a hot, dusty climate like Mamre.  He then prepared his food from his best source of crops and the meat came from choice animals.  He bowed down to them and stood back and waited upon them like a true servant.

      Tradition reflects on the three angels as the Trinity.  We may well reflect on the hospitality that Abraham extends to his guests and try to bring it into our manner of conduct.  Do people see in my actions the role of a servant, or do we insist on our needs being met first?  We are called on to meet the needs of anyone who needs help.  Jesus, in Philippians 2:6-11, shows us how to take on the role of a servant.  We need to look with humility and joy towards others, and they need to see in our service the sign of God’s love and peace in us.

                        COLOSSIANS 1:24-28

      Paul compares his suffering as completing the sufferings of Jesus Christ.  Jesus died to save the church; but the church must continue on in a broken lonely world.  Paul experienced incredible rejection and physical danger in bringing his message of Good News to a many times more hostile world.  Paul’s legacy to us is that we too are called today to bring the marvelous mystery of Christ to all people, and if such service involves suffering, sacrifice and even death, then that is the filling up and sharing the suffering of Christ.  Paul’s task was to bring to men a new discovery, a mystery that was now revealed.

      Paul’s great gift to our Christian faith and to the world itself was that Christ was the God of not just the Jews,  but the Gentiles as well.  Paul totally destroyed the idea that God’s love and mercy were for only a special nation or a privileged people.  Our God is a God of all people, poor people, rich people, young people, old people and all nationalities.

      Had it not been for Paul we might have been nothing more than a new sect of Judaism.  The Jews would have refused to believe that he was the God of Gentiles, and that would have been blasphemous.  The gnostic would have never believed that every man could be taught enough knowledge necessary for salvation.  The gnostics believe that salvation was only for the spiritual elite and the chosen few.

      Most educators today have agreed that it is impossible to teach knowledge to every person, because not everyone is capable of learning it.  We can look around today and see that not everyone has the same gifts.  There are gifts which some will never attain.  There are those who are color-blind and to whom the wonders of art mean nothing.  There are those who are tone deaf and the glory of music does not exist.  Not everyone can be a singer, a writer, a student, or a preacher.  These are gifts which some will never possess.  There are privileges a person will never enjoy.  There are some heights of fame and glory that some will never scale but the mystery that Paul brought to the world through his preaching was that to everyone there is available the Good News of the Gospel, and that is the love of God in Christ Jesus who dwells within each one of us.

     This Good News is the transforming power which brings holiness into life itself.  That is why Paul can say he rejoices in his suffering for us.  He was bringing the Good News, and making the Word of God fully known.  Today you and I are called to continue and we too are to rejoice in our sufferings as we bring the Good News, and, like Paul, make the Word of God fully known to all men.

                          LUKE 10:38-42

      In the first reading Abraham’s anxiety to entertain his guests leaves us almost winded.  Abraham hastened into the tent.  He ran to the herd.  He had a servant quickly prepare a meal.  Then in our Gospel reading we see Martha rushing about and even complaining about Mary’s lack of concern.  To judge from the story of the Samaritan, Martha should have been praised for her practical service to Jesus.  Jesus, in fact, challenges her priorities.

      The whole gospel is not contained in loving your neighbor, no matter how important that is.  Christian discipleship is first and foremost surrendering to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.  There must be a quiet time to listen to his Word.  Devotion to Jesus is the “one thing” that is required.  Matthew 6:33 “Seek ye first his kingship and all else will be added unto you.”  This kind of a relationship shows itself in loving service, but without prayer, care for other’s needs may not be love.

      Today’s Gospel shows us a tension between temperaments.  Some people are naturally dynamos of activity; others are normally quiet.  Some people find it very hard to just sit and meditate alone with the Lord.  There are those who would find it very uncomfortable to go into an active ministry.  God needs his Mary and Marthas too.  Ecclesiastes tells us, “There is an appointed time for everything and a time for every affair under the heavens.” (3:1).

     In today’s Gospel Luke shows us how the incident between Mary and Martha illustrates the primary love of God with all one’s heart, soul, strength and mind.  Jesus points out to Martha that there is a proper time for prayer and contemplation, for studying scripture and listening to God, just as there is a proper time for action.

     We need only to think where Jesus was going when this happened.  He was on his way to Jerusalem – to die.  His whole being was taken up with the intensity to bend his will to the will of God.  Jesus wanted comfort, peace, solace and Martha wanted to lay on him a fantastic meal and a spotlessly clean house.  That was not what Jesus needed or wanted but it was what Martha wanted.  Mary listened to his needs and Martha in her kindness assumed his needs.  Jesus said “one thing is necessary,” and in probability, a small simple meal would have of been enough.  This is one of our great difficulties in life.  We want to be kind to people, but we want to be kind to them in our way. We get hurt when  our way is not the necessary way.  We need to forget our plans and  listen to what he or she needs.  Mary understood Jesus’ needs but Martha did not.  Let us, as Mary, listen, listen………….


      The first reading tells us that a person’s reputation was largely connected to his hospitality.  The second reading tells us that the Good News of the Gospel is available to everyone. The Gospel reveals that it is God’s agenda not ours that is to be followed.

      Let us be available as Abraham and a servant to others, and let the mystery of Christ’s presence within us be available to all we meet.  Mary listened to Christ and she heard his heart as well as his words; let us do no less.

      We can be present to our families only when we are listening and understanding what they are saying and not saying. The essence of the Christian life is not doing, but rather it is dying. It is in dying to one’s own needs and being available to listen and respond to other’s needs.


          open_bible_over_black_and_blue_clouds_with_reflection             THE BREAD OF LIFE

                     CATHOLIC BIBLE STUDY





Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.



FIRST DAY Reread last week’s readings.


  1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or from

        the homily you heard on Sunday?



  1. From what you learned, what personal application did you

        choose to apply to your life this week?





     (“If only you heed the voice of the Lord, your God,”)



  1. Who is speaking and to whom is he speaking? Deuteronomy 29:1



  1. If you heed the voice of the Lord and keep his statutes and      commandments what will God do?  Deuteronomy 30:9-10



  1. What is this book called? Deuteronomy 30:10



  1. In what way must you return to the Lord?

     Deuteronomy 30:10, 6:5



  1. What does Moses say this command is not? Deuteronomy 30:11



  1. What two places will you not find it, and what shall you say about it not being there?  Deuteronomy 30:12-13


  1. What two places will you find this command? Deuteronomy 30:14



  1. What are you to do with the Lord’s command? Deuteronomy 30:14



Personal – In what way has your mouth spoken about the love that you have in your heart for the Lord?  In what way have others in your family, friends, or work acquaintances seen and heard this love in you?  Is the way you see yourself confirmed by the way others see and hear you?





       (“Making peace through the blood of the cross.”)



  1. Who is the first born of all creatures? Colossians 1:15



  1. In the image of whom did he come? Colossians 1:15



  1. In whom were heaven and earth created? Colossians 1:16



  1. What are some of the things that were created for Jesus?      Colossians 1:16



  1. Apart from him, what came into being? John 1:3



  1. He is before what, and how does everything continue its being?      Colossians 1:17



  1. Of what is he the head, and for what reason? Colossians 1:18



  1. What pleased God? Colossians 1:19



  1. How are we reconciled to God, and how has peace been made?         Colossians 1:20



  1. For what reason has he done this? Ephesians 1:14



Personal – In what way have you personally been at peace with God through Jesus?  Write down when and how this happened.  In what way have you shared this with someone else?





FOURTH DAY            READ LUKE 10:25-37               GOSPEL


                 (“Then go and do the same.”)



  1. Who stood up to pose a problem, how did he address him, and  what did he say to him?  Luke 10:25



  1. When Jesus answered him, he answered with two questions. What       were they?  Luke 10:26



  1. What was the lawyer’s reply in verse 27 of Luke 10?



  1. What is the new command that Jesus gave us at his last supper?  John 13:34 and 15:12



  1. How did Jesus say the lawyer had answered him and from where did he get his answer? Luke 10:28, Deuteronomy 6:5 and

     Leviticus 19:18



  1. What did Jesus say would happen to him if he followed that        command?  See Luke 10:28, and also Leviticus 18:5 to see what       happens to a man who obeys his command.



  1. What did he say to Jesus and what was Jesus reply about the  man going from Jerusalem to Jericho?  Luke 10:29-30


  1. Who was going down the same road and what did he do, and then who came upon him and what did he do? Luke 10:31-32



  1. What did the Samaritan do when he saw the man? Luke 10:34



  1. What did the Samaritan do the next day? Luke 10:35



  1. What did Jesus ask the lawyer, what was the lawyers answer, and what did Jesus tell him to do? Luke 10:36-37



Personal – In what way has the Lord given you an opportunity to be compassionate to a family member, a friend, a work acquaintance, a stranger this past week?  How did you respond?



FIFTH DAY  READ PSALM 69:14, 17, 30-31, 33-34, 36-37


           (“In your great mercy, turn toward me.”)



Read and meditate on Psalm 69:14, 17, 30-31, 33-34, 36-37.


What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?


How can you apply this to your life?






                      DEUTERONOMY 30:10-14


     This passage states that comfort, forgiveness, and restoration is not only possible for the Israelites but is desired by God. The nation of Israel must turn itself around and come back to the Lord.  Only then will God restore his mercy and restore Israel to her rightful place in the land.  Only through the covenant proposed by God to his people can the people regain happiness.


     We hear in today’s reading that the keeping of the command (Deut. 30:11-14) is not as far-fetched as many of the shallow minds of the ages suggested.  The author has stressed a powerfully spiritual message. The Law of God is not in some far-off courtroom or in some prestigious university. The Law of God is something very close to the heart of man. If this attitude prevailed toward the Mosaic Law, Jesus would not have had such conflict with the formalism of the lawyer. The Judeo-Christian positive law can be equated simply with God’s way of guiding the aspirations of the human heart toward him.


     St. Paul shows us how close God’s law really is in Romans 10:6-10. Paul tells us that we don’t need to search the heavens for Christ to bring him down to help us, and we don’t need to go among the dead to bring Christ back to life again! Salvation is trusting in Christ; it is as near as our own hearts and mouths.  For it is by believing in his heart that a man becomes right with God and with his mouth he tells others of his faith, confirming his salvation.


     People have always looked for God through dramatic experiences, hoping for some life-changing encounter.  Some people will travel far and wide to meet some famous spiritual leader, but God’s salvation is right in front of us.  He will come into us wherever we are.  All we need to do is yield and surrender to his gift of salvation.  We need to stop searching and start yielding to his love and mercy.


     We hear everyday at our Catholic Mass the proclamation of God’s Word bringing us salvation, healing and restoration.  Let us yield our ears to hear, our hearts to believe, and our tongues to speak and his gift of salvation will spread throughout the land.


                       COLOSSIANS 1:15-20


     This passage has some of the most powerful theological statements about Christ in the New Testament.  Christ is praised as  the Icon or image of the invisible God.  He manifests God’s presence in his person.  He is called the first born of all creation because everything else was created through his mediation.  He existed before all creation and is preeminent among all creation. Paul shows us the scope of creation.  He begins with heaven and earth, visible and invisible, power and might, thrones and dominions, principalities or power.  This was all created not only for him and through him but, also, in him.  Everything is subject to Christ, and through his creative power, creation itself continues on. 


     Paul speaks of Christ as the beginning, the starting point of redemption.  He is the first to experience the resurrection of life and, therefore, is the first-born from among the dead.  By the frequently used word “all,” the cosmic dimension of Christ’s power and glory are emphasized.  The restoration which he brings about is the peace that was accomplished by the shedding of his blood on the cross.


     It is stated that Paul had never visited Colossae, evidently the church had been founded by other converts from Paul’s missionary travels.  The church, however, had been infiltrated by religious relativism by some believers who attempted to combine elements of paganism and secular philosophy with Christian doctrine.  Paul attacks the heresy, confronts these false teachings and affirms the sufficiency of Christ.


     We can see in today’s passage what happens when the head coach is absent and the team begins to flounder.  Paul defends his teachings about Christ in a strong doctrinal discussion of the person and work of Christ.  Paul was battling against a group of leaders called “Gnostics.”  The Gnostics believed it took special knowledge to be accepted by God, even as they claimed to be Christian.  They believed that Christ alone was not the way of salvation.  Paul’s main argument was: it is not what one knows that makes him a Christian, but who he knows.  To know Christ is to know God.  The same danger exists today, and like Paul, we must accept Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior.  Jesus calls for our heart, mind and soul and we need only surrender to him and say yes.


                          LUKE 10:25-37


     The lawyer asked Jesus a question that on the surface seemed simple: “What must I do to receive eternal life?”  Jesus, in his role as a Hebrew Teacher or Rabbi, answered him with two questions: “What was written in the Law, and how did he interpret the law?”  At that time, to an orthodox Jew, the definition of neighbor would have meant no one else but a Jew.  Jesus relates to them a story that draws from them a definition of who is neighbor.


      Jesus begins by telling the story of a man who was robbed and beaten and left in the roadway to die. The first person to come by the  injured man was a priest, who was probably on his way to the temple to practice his sacred duties.  The priest did not even touch the fallen man because, as scripture has it in Numbers 19:11, a priest would be banned from entering into the sacred temple for seven days after touching a dead person.  His duty to the temple and community came before helping this particular man.  The next person to come by was a Levite who was an assistant to the priests.  The priests made the atonement sacrifice and were in charge of the altars and sacred services.  The Levite, too, was caught up in his duties to his ministry, and his responsibility which was being an assistant to the priest in the temple and other religious duties.


     Finally, along came a Samaritan who not only stopped to see what was wrong, but became involved in trying to help.  The man may have not been a Samaritan really, the name itself was used for people who didn’t exactly conform to existing standards.  Today we might call that kind of a person a “maverick”, someone who is willing to take a risk.  Jesus was called a Samaritan in John 8:48, obviously they thought he was not orthodox like them.  The question Jesus puts to the lawyer, “Who do you think was neighbor to the man?” is the same question that is being asked of you and me.  God’s love is so great that anyone who is in need is eligible for his help.


     God wishes that no man perishes no matter his station in life.   We are called to love God with all our heart, soul and strength by loving our neighbor the same way.  Jesus even elevates this standard higher in John 15:12 when he calls us to love one another as he has loved us.  The Samaritan had the love of God in his heart and he spoke his love into action with his deeds.  We will be judged one day, not by our doctrine or creeds, but rather by how we loved our neighbor with all our heart, strength and soul.  It is how we love our neighbor that signifies to the world how we really love God.




     The first reading tells us that repentance must come before mercy can be expected.  The second reading shows that Christ is praised as the image of the invisible God.  The Gospel reveals that we will be judged by how we love our neighbor.


     We can love, like the Samaritan, when we yield to God’s love and allow ourselves to love everyone and anyone just as Jesus loves us. This is a love that is willing to pay any price that is required. Let your family be the first to experience this kind of love from you. You can begin by dying to your own needs, become more aware of the needs of others, and respond to those needs.                                            







Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.



FIRST DAY Reread last week’s readings.


  1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or from the homily you heard on Sunday?



  1. From what you learned, what personal application did you choose to apply to your life this week?





        (The Lord’s power shall be known to his servants.)


  1. Who will rejoice with Jerusalem and be glad because of her?       Isaiah 66:10



  1. What are those to do who were mourning over Jerusalem?      Isaiah 66:10



  1. What does the milk of Jerusalem bring? Isaiah 66:11



  1. For what does 1 Peter 2:2 say to be eager, and for what reason?



  1. What will the Lord spread over Jerusalem and how?      Isaiah 66:12



  1. As nurslings, how shall you be carried and fondled?      Isaiah 66:12



  1. Fill in the following blanks: “As a mother __________    her son, so will I you.”  Isaiah 66:13



  1. Where will you find comfort? Isaiah 66:13



  1. When this happens, what will your heart and body do?      Isaiah 66:14



  1. What shall be known to the Lord’s servants and what will be known to his enemies? Isaiah 66:14



Personal – In what way do you find comfort when feeling depressed?  To whom do you go to?  Write out your thoughts and then meditate on 2 Corinthians 1:3-4.





(Paul boasts of nothing but the cross of Jesus Christ.)


  1. Who is speaking in Galatians 6:14? Galatians 1:1



  1. Paul says he must boast of nothing but what?   Galatians 6:14



  1. Through the cross of Jesus Christ, what does Paul say about the world and about himself?  Galatians 6:14



  1. What does not matter? Galatians 6:15



  1. What is all that matters? Galatians 6:15



  1. In whose image are we created, and of what is this justice and holiness born? Ephesians 4:24


  1. What two things are on all who follow this rule of life?          Galatians 6:16



  1. What does Paul bear in his body? Galatians 6:17



  1. How does Paul end this letter? Galatians 6:18



Personal – In what way have you been created anew?  How do others see you dying to yourself and boasting in the cross of Jesus Christ?  What is the rule of life you follow?



FOURTH DAY         READ LUKE 10:1-12, 17-20            GOSPEL

(I have given you power to tread on all the forces of the enemy.)


  1. How many did the Lord appoint, and how, when, and where did he send them?  Luke 10:1



  1. What did Jesus say about the harvest and the workers, and for what did he say to ask?  Luke 10:2



  1. How did Jesus say he is sending his laborers?      Luke 10:3



  1. How did he tell them to travel? Luke 10:4



  1. When entering a house what did he tell them to say?      Luke 10:5           



  1. If there is a peaceable man, what will your peace do, and if he is not, what will happen to your peace?  Luke 10:6



  1. Where were they to stay and what did he say about wages?   Luke 10:7



  1. Where they were welcomed, what were they to do with the food, the sick, and what were they to say to them? Luke 10:8-9



  1. What were they to say to people that did not welcome them and where were they to go to say it? 

     Luke 10:10-11



  1. What will happen to such a town? Luke 10:12



  1. How did the seventy-two return, and what did they say was subject to them and in whose name?  Luke 10:17



  1. Who did Jesus say fell from the sky like lightning?      Luke 10:18



  1. What had he given them and what shall not happen to them? Luke 10:19



  1. In what should you not so much rejoice, and in what should you rejoice? Luke 10:20



Personal – In what way have you used this power that God has given you in the name of Jesus to get  rid of the enemy in your family, or with those you meet each day?  Reread verse 19 of Luke 10 and claim the promise given to you.


FIFTH DAY          READ PSALM 66:1-7, 16, 20


             (Sing praise to the glory of his Name.)


Read and meditate on Psalm 66:1-7, 16, 20.


What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?


How can you apply this to your life?





                        ISAIAH 66:10-14

     God will not let his work of restoration go unfinished.  In this image of a child nursing at his mother’s breast, God shows that he will accomplish what he promised.

      This promise of eternal peace and mercy is as unstoppable as the birth of a baby.  When all the pain is over, the joy begins.  Jerusalem is being presented as the new City of God.  The new Jerusalem is a place where safety, peace and plenty will be available to all.  All the nations are coming to nurse at the breasts of the “New Jerusalem” and they too, along with the remnant of the old, will find new life in Jesus Christ.

      This is a tremendous verse about how God, in his incredible mercy, has left the door open for those who believe and obey him.  The faithful remnant asked God for two favors:  show them compassion (Isaiah 63:15-19) and punish their enemies (Isaiah 66:6).  God today still keeps that promise.  He will always preserve a faithful remnant of his people no matter how bad the world.  There are always a few who remain loyal to him.  This verse shows us how the goodness of God will be seen by the world and yet many will still go on rejecting him.  The verse closes with a firm warning that his wrath will come upon his enemies (Isaiah 66:14).  The earth, as we know it, will not last forever.  God promised Isaiah that he would create a new and eternal earth (Isaiah 65:17, 66:22).  We don’t really know how it will look or where it will be, but Jesus of Nazareth and his followers will be united to live there forever.

                        GALATIANS 6:14-18

      This passage of Paul to the Galatians boldly declares not only his freedom in  Christ but, also, it declares the freedom of all Christians in Jesus Christ.  In the days of Paul, there were many who wanted to grow in the Christian life but were being distracted by those who insisted that they had to keep certain Jewish laws. 

      Some of the “Judaizers,” (Jews who insisted that you had to be circumcised before you could become a Christian), emphasized circumcision as proof of their holiness, but ignored other Jewish laws.  People often choose a particular principle and make it the measuring rod of faith.  Some despise promiscuity but tolerate prejudice.  God’s word has to be followed in its entirety. 

      Our world is just like Paul’s world, it is full of enticements.  We are being barraged daily with both subtle and overt cultural pressures and propaganda by the media.  We hear Paul saying that he no longer is bothered by them any more because he is dead to the influence of worldly things.

      The only way for us to escape these destructive influences is to ask God to help us die to them just as Paul did.  We need to ask ourselves, how much do the interests of this world matter to us?  We need also to remember that it is very easy to get caught up in the externals.  We need to caution against emphasizing things we should or should not do, with no concern for the inward condition of the heart.  We do not do good things to become good, we do good things because of the goodness that is within us, and that is the Holy Spirit (John 14:16).  Living a good life without inward    change leads to a spiritual walk that is shallow, empty and very frustrating.

      Paul is telling us that it really does not matter what the world thinks about him or his accomplishments.  What does matter to him is the peace that came to him when he died to himself for Jesus Christ.  What matters to God is that we be completely changed from the inside out.  Paul was to the world a prisoner, but in reality he was completely free in Christ.  We have been set free by Jesus Christ.  We do not need to be set back by some form of bondage again.  We are all called to use our freedom to live for Christ and serve him as he desires.

                       LUKE 10:1-12, 17-20

      Only Luke tells of this second mission of the disciples.  More than just the twelve apostles had been following Jesus. He chose a group of about seventy disciples to prepare a number of towns that he would visit.  These disciples were just ordinary men, chosen for a not-so-ordinary assignment.  The disciples were not trained in any special categories, nor did they have any unique qualifications.  What made them different was their awareness of Jesus’ power and their vision to reach all the people through him.  We see that having personally experienced his power was much more important than dedicating their skills to God’s kingdom. Today, we need to focus on what he wants us to do in the world.

      Jesus was sending out teams of two to reach the people.  They were not to try to do the job themselves without help; rather they were to pray to God for more workers.  In doing the work of evangelizing, we may want to jump out and begin working to save others and bring immediate results.  Jesus tells us to first begin by praying for more workers, and before praying for the unsaved people, pray that other concerned people will join you in reaching out to them.

     There is no unemployment in Christian service.  The Lord Jesus has work enough for everyone.  Don’t just sit back and watch, look for ways to reap the harvest.

      Jesus leaves little room for illusion.  He tells the disciples they will be like lambs among wolves.  They would have to be careful, for they will meet all kinds of opposition.  We, too, are sent into the world as lambs among wolves.  So we need to watch out and remember that we need to face our enemies, not with timidity,  but with power, not with aggression, but with love and courage.  

      The disciples were told to accept hospitality graciously because they were entitled to it.  We need to see today that our ministers are supported emotionally and receive plenty of encouragement.  The disciples were disciplined to eat what was put in front of them and to go among the sick and heal in the name of Jesus.  They were to shake off the dust of any town that refused them and move on with the Good News.

     The disciples had seen tremendous results as they ministered in Jesus’ name and came back overjoyed.  Jesus warned them not to get puffed up with their exploits but to remember their most important victory was that their names were registered among the citizens of heaven.  Jesus reminds us, today in our ministry of discipleship, that the victory is being won in Jesus’ name.  The prize is not human glory through feats of evangelistic power, but of heavenly glory through following Jesus to Calvary.


     The first reading shows that God will not let his work of restoration go unfinished.  The second reading tells us that our world, like Paul’s world, is full of enticements.  The Gospel reveals that there is no unemployment in Christian service.

     Let us boast of nothing but the power of the cross of Christ and his Holy Name.  We can be instruments of tremendous deeds in his name.  We need to begin everything we do in prayer to our Heavenly Father through the power of the Holy Spirit in Jesus’ Name and go forth and make disciples of all the nations.  Let us begin with the members of our family.  


                                THIRTEENTH SUNDAY OF ORDINARY TIME – CYCLE C  




Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.



FIRST DAY Reread last week’s readings.


  1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or from  the homily you heard on Sunday?



  1. From what you learned, what personal application did you   choose to apply to your life this week?



SECOND DAY         READ 1 KINGS 19:16, 19-21     FIRST READING


    (Elisha gave up all that he had to follow the Lord’s call.)


  1. In 1 Kings 19:16, 19-21 who is speaking and to whom is he  speaking? 1 Kings 19:12-15



  1. Who was Elijah to name king of Israel? 1 Kings 19:16



  1. What was Elijah called and who was to succeed him?     1 Kings 19:16           



  1. Which of the following show how this was to be done?
  2. appoint
  3. assign
  4. anoint



Personal – What does to anoint mean to you personally?



  1. As Elijah set out, who did he come upon and what was he doing?    1 Kings 19:19



  1. What did Elijah do to him? 1 Kings 19:19



  1. What did Elisha do with the oxen, who did he run after and what did he say to him?  1 Kings 19:20



  1. What did Elijah say to him? 1 Kings 19:20



  1. When Elisha left him, what did he do to the yoke of oxen and  the plowing equipment?  1 Kings 19:21



  1. What did he do with the flesh? 1 Kings 19:21



  1. After he did all this what did he do and how did he follow   Elijah? 1 Kings 19:21



Personal – To what extent have you been called to give up some earthly possessions to follow the Lord’s call?





              (We are called to live in freedom.)


  1. Who is writing this epistle? Galatians 1:1



  1. Why did Christ free us? Galatians 5:1



  1. How must you stand and what must you not do? Galatians 5:1



  1. How were you freed the first time? Revelations 1:5



  1. How have we been called to live and to what does this not give full reign?  Galatians 5:13



  1. How are we to place ourselves at one another’s service? Galatians 5:13 



  1. How has the law found its fulfillment? Galatians 5:14



  1. What will happen to you if you go on biting and tearing at   one another?  Galatians 5:15



  1. How should you live and what will not happen to you?      Galatians 5:16



  1. What does the flesh and the spirit do to one another and why do you not do what your will intends?  Gal. 5:17



  1. If you are guided by the spirit, what are you not under?      Galatians 5:18



Personal – In what way are you living in accordance with the Spirit, in your home, work, or at play?  In what way are you yielding to the cravings of the flesh?  How can you take this situation and live according to the spirit?



FOURTH DAY             READ LUKE 9:51-62                GOSPEL


        (“Come away and proclaim the kingdom of God.”)


  1. As the time approached for Jesus to be taken from this world,  where did he resolve to go and who did he send ahead of him?  Luke 9:51



  1. What kind of town did those he sent ahead come to and why    were they there?  Luke 9:52



Personal – In what way have you prepared the way for the Lord’s coming for yourself and for your family?



  1. What was the Samaritan’s reaction to his coming and what was       the reason they acted this way?  Luke 9:53



  1. What did Jesus’ disciples, James and John, say when they saw the Samaritans would not welcome him? Luke 9:54



  1. How did Jesus respond to this and where did he turn?      Luke 9:55



  1. Where did they go? Luke 9:56




Personal – When you find opposition in walking with the Lord, what is your reaction especially in your family?  Do you continue walking with him or do you persist on getting through to them?



  1. As they were making their way along, what did someone say to       Jesus?  Luke 9:57



  1. What did Jesus say to him? Luke 9:58



  1. What did he say to another? Luke 9:59



  1. What did Jesus say to him? Luke 9:60



  1. Why did Jesus want him to come with him? Luke 9:60



  1. What was the stipulation another gave him before he could be his follower?  Luke 9:61



  1. What did Jesus say about a person who keeps looking back? Luke 9:62


Personal – What blockages or excuses have you had for not following Jesus?  He is saying to you “Come after me.”  In what way have you been going before him instead of after him as a follower?



FIFTH DAY         READ PSALM 16:1-2, 5, 7-11


              (“You will show me the path of life”)


Read and meditate on Psalm 16:1-2, 5, 7-11.


What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?


How can you apply this to your life?





                          1 KINGS 19:16, 19-21

     One of the most important aspects of this passage, from the Old Testament, deals with the price of discipleship.  To follow the call of God means that we surrender our will to God so that we may fulfill the divine will.  We “tie” ourselves to the holy will of God.  This demands sacrifice, an important characteristic of religion.

     Sacrifice means “to make holy.”  Religion means to bind oneself to almighty God and to promote the kingdom of God in this life.

      We share in the mysteries of Christ; we all have the vocation to live out the mysteries of Christ.  And in the Old Testament we see the first manifestations of this truth since all mankind is founded on the mystery of the Incarnation (Colossians 1:15-20; Ephesians 1:4-14). 

      All of the above may be applied to the Jewish prophet, Elisha.  Elisha paid the price of discipleship.  Indeed, he gave up his worldly possessions to follow God’s call, made manifest through Elijah.  He was to succeed Elijah to the office of prophecy.

      The Old Testament tells us that repeatedly the Jewish nation had fallen into spiritual adultery by following the gods of pagan nations.  The Book of Hosea is replete with this sad phenomenon.  To recall the Jews to the worship of the true God, God raised up men totally dedicated to this task of restoration.

      This was no easy task; paganism offered an “easy” religion, a religion that made few demands on fallen human nature where the gods were made in the image of man and not man to the image of the true God.

      The prophets, as we see in the case of Elisha, his predecessor, Elijah, Jeremiah and the other prophets, faced their gigantic task with fortitude – one of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit.  They were men of God, worthy of imitation.

                        GALATIANS 5:1, 13-18

      Above, I mentioned that we should be “tied” and here we have Paul speaking of liberty.  Nonetheless, there is no contradiction.  To “tie” ourselves, is to bind ourselves, as the word religion suggests (from the Latin religare, to bind) therefore we are bound to the infinite God; there is no constraint whatsoever.

     On the other hand, sin can become slavery; temptations are constant demands for self-satisfaction; fallen human nature has the tendency to seek not the kingdom of God but rather the kingdom of instant gratification.  To master ourselves calls for the grace of God; to master ourselves is to possess the liberty of Christ as Paul puts it so well:  “It was for liberty that Christ freed us.  Do not take on yourselves the yoke of slavery a second time!”

      In the spirit of true liberty, we are able to give of ourselves to God who is not only within us but within our neighbor as well.  In that same liberty, we give ourselves to the service of our neighbor, to the sick neighbor, to the sick in spirit, and to see in all of these the Christ Jesus. (Matthew 25:31-46)

      When all this comes about, know that the kingdom of God is near at hand, despite appearances.

                          LUKE 9:51-62

      Today’s gospel passage deals with the last stages of Christ’s public ministry: “As the time approached when Jesus was to be taken from this world.”

      Jesus and his disciples were to return to Jerusalem by way of Samaria.  At that time bad feelings existed between the Jews and the Samaritans.  The Samaritans were a mixed race, descendants of Israelitic-Assyrian colonists, and much hated by the Jews at the time of Christ. For a Jew to go through Samaritan territory was rather a risky thing just as it was risky for a Samaritan to go through Jewish territory.

      With this background, we can understand the Samaritan’s reluctance to allow Jesus and his followers to pass through their territory.  Unlike James and John, Jesus accepted the situation.  These two disciples were all for the destruction of the Samaritans: “Lord, would you not have us call down fire from heaven and destroy them?”  But this was not the doctrine of Christ. Instead, Jesus had taught:  “…love your enemies…If you love those who love you, what merit is there in that?”  (Matthew 5:44-46).  A true disciple “…must be made perfect as (our) heavenly Father is perfect.”  (Matthew 5:48)

      We come now to the subject of vocations.  To follow Christ was never an easy task, and it will always be so.  Christ made that clear in today’s Gospel. “The foxes have lairs, the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.”

      A second example is given:  “To another he said, “Come after me.”  The man replied, “Let me bury my father first.” Jesus’ answer seems strange.  “Let the dead bury their dead.”  Obviously, Christ did not mean that the dead can perform burials.  As commentators (e.g., Stuhlmueller in The Jerusalem Commentary, p.143,#97) point out:  “A play on words:  Let the spiritually dead bury the physically dead, mine is a message of life.”  Jesus did not intend to be taken literally, but rather he wanted to stir thought.

      Today’s gospel gives us a third example concerning the vocation to follow him.  Vocation entails a “totality.”  By this I mean that once we set out to follow Christ we do so wholeheartedly, no half-way measures.  We cannot chase after other pursuits; we should not be distracted so as other pursuits gradually become more and more important at the  expense  of  the vocation to follow Christ.  In brief, an avocation should never become a vocation; a vocation should never become an avocation. 

      In following Christ, it is of the greatest importance to pay heed to his words: “Whoever puts his hand to the plow but keeps looking back is unfit for the reign of God.”  This is a very real admonition. Throughout the course  of  Church  history, “looking back”  has sometimes led to disastrous consequences, especially among priests and religious. Witness the spectacle of the worldly priest, the worldly religious and the worldly Christian.  Surely, if there were a better way to follow Christ; to help bring about the kingdom of God more effectively, the merciful Christ would have pointed out the way.  So we believe that doing the will of God, and not our will, is the only true criterion for putting today’s readings into practice.


      The first reading shows us that the cost of discipleship is very high. The second reading teaches that mastering ourselves is to possess the liberty of Christ, and the Gospel explains that a true disciple must be made perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect.

     This week, let the power of the Holy Spirit come upon you and root out the bigotry that is within you. Examine your speech, thoughts and actions and see if these areas need to be improved. Following Jesus calls for obedience, and obedience is the core of being a disciple. To really be free is to be obedient to the law of Christ, and that is to love one another as he has loved us, without regard for race, creed or color.




Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.



FIRST DAY    Reread last week’s readings.


  1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or from the homily you  heard on Sunday?


  1. From what you learned, what personal application did you choose to apply to your                           life this week?



SECOND DAY                               READ 2 SAMUEL 12:7-10                         FIRST READING

(“I anointed you King of Israel”)


  1. Who was Nathan? 2 Samuel 7:2


  1. What did Nathan say to David in regards to the Parable in 2 Samuel 12:1-6?             2 Samuel 12:7


  1. What did Nathan say God had done for David? 2 Samuel 12:7-8


  1. What did David do with Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, and the wife of Uriah the Hittite? 2 Samuel 11:3-5


  1. What did David tell Joab, who was in command of the Army, to do and what happened to Uriah?  2 Samuel 11:15, 24


  1. What did David do in the sight of the Lord? 2 Samuel 12:9


  1. What would never depart from David’s house? 2 Samuel 12:10


  1. What did Jesus tell one of His disciples? Matthew 26:52


  1. What happened to David sons, Amnon, Absalom, and Adonijah?             2 Samuel 13:28-29, 2 Samuel 18:14, 1 Kings 2:24-25


  1. As a result of David’s sin what did the Lord say he would do to his house, and what would happen in broad daylight? 2 Samuel 12:11


  1. David had done this deed in secret but the Lord will do what? 2 Samuel 12:12


Personal – What sin in your life has been passed on to your family?

THIRD DAY                                 READ Galatians 2:16,19-21                    SECOND READING

                                                  (“I have been crucified with Christ.”)


  1. How is a person not justified and how is a person justified? Galatians 2:16


  1. By who are we justified? Acts 13:37-39


  1. How did Paul die to the law? Galatians 2:19


  1. How was the law given and what comes through what comes through Jesus Christ? John 1:17


  1. Who does Paul live for and what has he done with Christ? Galatians 2:19


  1. What does Paul boast about and what has been crucified to him and him to it?             Galatians 6:14


  1. Who lives in Paul? Galatians 2:20


  1. In who is Paul’s faith and what has he done for him?             Galatians 2:20


  1. What does Paul not nullify? Galatians 2:21


  1. If justification comes through the law what did Christ do? Galatians 2:21


Personal – In what way do others see you living for God? What are area’s that you are living by the law that need to be changed? If you are doing all the right things but have a bad attitude reflect and see if you are doing them out of duty and living by the law.


FOURTH DAY                                  READ LUKE 7:36-8:3                                           GOSPEL

(“She has shown great love.”)


  1. Who invited Jesus to dine with him? Luke 7:36


  1. Who learned that Jesus was dining at a Pharisees house and what did she bring with her?             Luke 7:37


  1. Where did the woman stand and what did she do? Luke 7:38


  1. What did the Pharisee say to himself? Luke 7:39


  1. What did Jesus say to the Pharisee and what was his reply? Luke 7:40


  1. What did Jesus say about two people and what did he say the creditor did? Luke 7:41-42


  1. What was the question asked in Luke 7:42?


  1. What did Simon reply and what did Jesus tell him? Luke 7:43
  2. What three things did the Pharisee not do and what three things did the woman do?             Luke 7:44-46


  1. What did Jesus say about her sins and what had the woman shown? Luke 7:47


  1. What did Jesus say to the woman and what did the others at table say? Luke 7:48-49


  1. What did Jesus tell the woman saved her and how did he tell her to go. Luke 7:50


Personal – What has been your response to the forgiveness of your sins by Jesus? How can you show great love to God and to your neighbor?



FIFTH DAY                                   READ PSALM 32:1-2, 5, 7

(“…you took away the guilt of my sin.”)


Read and meditate on Psalm 32:1-2, 5, 7.


What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?


How can you apply this to your daily spiritual life?



SIXTH DAY                         READ ALL OF THE COMMENTARY

                                                               2 SAMUEL 12:7-10

This passage reveals to us the destructive power of sin and the consequences that happens as a result of sin. David, a special chosen man of God, fell to sin through murder, theft and adultery. He was confronted by his great friend, counselor, and Prophet Nathan. David admitted his guilt when Nathan told him “you are that man” and Nathan told him that the Lord had forgiven him but the consequences of his actions would be felt by his own family. His child by Bathsheba died and all his sons except Solomon died in violence.

He then cleansed himself and went into the Tabernacle and worshipped the Lord. Today we are faced with forgiveness for our sins, but there still is a consequence that must be paid for that sin. Like David who later became one of the greatest men that ever lived, we must repent, and enter into God’s will of love and obedience. David was called by God “A man after my own heart”, we are called to be the same. We may not sin as greatly as David, but there still will be consequences for our pride, rebellion, lying, criticism, etc. David’s response to God’s forgiveness was a life of love and obedience to God and ours should be the same.

GALATIANS 2:16, 19-21

We are being told in this passage that the law cannot save you. The law is like a mirror and shows you what you have done. Paul was trying to show them that if the law was salvation, then Christ Himself died in vain. The law can never make us acceptable to God and yet the law has a very important role to play in the life of a Christian.  It protects us by setting up a standout of acceptable behavior and it very definitely convicts us of wrong doing. This can be the time or vehicle that lets us turn to the Lord for forgiveness. All sins have a consequence and we call that penance. All crimes have a consequence and we call that fines or prison. It is obvious that we cannot keep from breaking the commandments; therefore, it brings us into a deep trust in the healing power of the forgiveness of Jesus Christ. The law cannot save us only Jesus can, but the law can be a guide to living a better life for Christ. Because we have all been infected by sin, we cannot keep God’s laws perfectly. We can only trust in Jesus Christ to take away our sins, then and only then do we become acceptable to God. Christ did not die in vain, His death on the cross brought freedom to the whole world.

LUKE 7:36-8:3

             This passage reveals to us some very strong customs of the people in Jesus’ time. Jesus reclined at the table, a normal posture because he propped up on His elbow to eat at the table. This was why the woman had such easy access to Jesus’ feet and head. The host normally greeted his guest with a kiss, Jesus did not receive one. Washing the dusty feet of guests was very normal and the anointing of the guest heads by the host was very traditional. Jesus did not get these courtesies by the host. The sinful woman washes His feet with her tears, dried His feet with her hair and even anointed Him with her special perfume. She did for Jesus more than the host did for Him. Her showing such reverence for Jesus is a sign that she has experienced being forgiven by Him and the consequence of that forgiveness is demonstrated by her great love for Jesus.

This example is also spelled out by the comparison of the two men who owed a debt to the creditor. The one who has been forgiven much will return much love to the forgiver than the one who had less to be forgiven. Christ forgives today all those who come to Him. His Holy Spirit draws us to ask Jesus for forgiveness. Jesus’ death on the cross won freedom for the whole world and we show our gratitude by loving others as He loves us (John 13:34). She anointed Him with oil and He anointed her with forgiveness. Let us do no less than he did with one another. Love is a decision and forgiveness is also a decision. Unforgiveness is the greatest blockage to healing so let us forgive and experience God’s never ending forgiveness.


In the first reading David was confronted by Nathan of his sinfulness. In the second reading Paul lives by faith because he knows God loves him and in the Gospel the woman responds to Jesus love and forgiveness by serving Him.

Examine your conscience and see if you have had to be confronted by another to see your sinfulness or have you seen yourself as with great sin. Respond to God by imitating David, Paul and the sinful woman to your family.






Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.



FIRST DAY    Reread last week’s readings.


  1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or from the homily you                                               heard on Sunday?


  1. From what you learned, what personal application did you choose to apply to your                           life this week?



SECOND DAY                                READ 1 KINGS 17:17-24                          FIRST READING


(“The Lord heard the prayer of Elijah, the life breath returned to the child’s body …”)


  1. What happened to the son of the mistress of the house? 1 Kings 17:17


  1. What did the widow say to Elijah and what did she call him? 1 Kings 17:18


  1. Who was Elijah and what does Malachi 4:5-6 say he will do?


  1. What did Elijah tell the widow to do with her son, from where did he take him and where did he bring him? 1 Kings 17:19


  1. Who did Elijah call out to and what did he say to him? 1 Kings 17:20


  1. What did he do three times and calling out to the Lord what did he say? 1 Kings 17:21


  1. What did the Lord hear and what happened to the Child?


  1. After Elijah gave the child to his mother what did he say? 1 Kings 17:23


  1. What did the widow now know and what did she say comes from his mouth? 1 Kings 17:24


  1. What is God’s Word? Psalm 119:105


  1. What will happen to a prophet who hears a word from the Lord? Ezekiel 3:17-21


  1. What does God do with our sins and our ills? Psalm 103:3


Personal – How does your life show you have accepted God’s forgiveness? What do you need to do to experience God’s healing touch?


THIRD DAY                                    READ Galatians 1:11-19                       SECOND READING


(“…but it came through a revelation of Jesus Christ!”)


  1. What does Paul want you to know about the Gospel preached by him? Galatians 1:11


  1. From whom did he not receive, or be taught the gospel he preaches? How did it come to Him? Galatians 1:12


  1. What was given Paul, how was the mystery made known to him and to whom has it been revealed? Ephesians 3:2-5


  1. What two things did Paul try to do to the church in his former way of life? Galatians 1:13


  1. What did Paul progress in and what was he for his ancestral tradition? Galatians 1:14


  1. When did God set Paul apart and how did he call him? Galatians 1:15


  1. What was God pleased to do and for what reason? Galatians 1:16


  1. Who did Paul not consult, where did he go, and then after three years where did he go and then who did he consult? Galatians 1:16-18


  1. Who did Paul consult and remain with for fifteen days? Galatians 1:18


  1. Who was the only Apostle Paul saw at this time? Galatians 1:19


Personal – How has God revealed himself to you and what has he called you to do?


FOURTH DAY                                   READ LUKE 7:11-17                                            GOSPEL


(“Young man, I tell you arise!”)


  1. Who accompanied Jesus on his journey to Nain? Luke 7:11


  1. What did Jesus see as he drew ear the gate of the city? Luke 7:12


  1. What was Jesus moved with when he saw the widow and what did he say to her? Luke 7:13


  1. To whom does God show pity? Psalm 72:13


  1. What was the Good Samaritan moved with upon seeing the man who was beaten? Luke 10:33


  1. What did Jesus touch, what did the bearers do and what did he say? Luke 7:14


  1. What did the dead man do and to whom did Jesus give him? Luke 7:15


  1. What seized the people and glorifying God who did they say has arisen in their midst? Luke 7:16


  1. What cast out fear? 1 John 4:18


  1. What is God? 1 John 4:16


  1. Who has visited his people and where did the report about Jesus spread? Luke 7:16-17


Personal – In what way has God had pity on you and how have you experienced God raise you or someone you know from the dead?



FIFTH DAY                                READ PSALM 30:2, 4-6, 11-13


(“I praise you, Lord, for you raised me up….”)


Read and meditate on Psalm 30:2, 4-6, 11-13


What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?


How can you apply this to your daily spiritual life?



SIXTH DAY                         READ ALL OF THE COMMENTARY


1 KINGS 17:17-24


In this passage we see Elijah, the most famous of all prophets being challenged by a pagan widow about his role as being a real man of God. She befriends him, feeds him and shelters him thinking she is doing the right thing. She is a widow and has only one son, and she sees her future through his eyes. Suddenly the boy becomes ill and then dies and her world explodes. She lashes out at Elijah and thinks that he is a part of God’s plan to destroy her for some hidden sin in her past. She accuses him of being especially cruel because she thinks God is doing the damage. True, we might say that she was a pagan and did not really know God. Yet, she knew who Elijah was. He was the famous prophet Elijah. His fame was known all over the land. Do you see that happening today? Have you ever experienced what this woman did? Do you wonder at times if God is punishing you for some sin that you thought was forgiven? Do you blame God for some of the painful things in your life? Well, Elijah shows us that when we have faith we can expect anything and survive anything. Today’s lesson ended with a happy ending, some of them today do not, why? Elijah told the woman “do not be troubled”. Jesus today tells us do not be troubled, just trust in him. When we put our complete trust in him, we receive the gift that passes all understanding. The word Gospel means “good news” and the good news is hope for us, hope for our families and hope for all our relatives. Today’s men and women of God are in your neighborhood. Seek them out.




In this passage we hear Paul telling that the way to heaven is not based on some mere human dream or whim. He is basically saying that there is only one way to God and that is through Jesus Christ (John 14:1-6). Today there are some religions who say there are equal valid paths to God, but that just is not true. There were zealous Jewish Christians that stated such practice as circumcision and dietary restrictions were required of all believers in Christ. These people were called Judaizers. Paul stood his ground on the message that salvation to Jews and Gentiles alike is only by faith in Jesus Christ. Paul tells his listeners that he did not choose to become an Apostle. Christ appointed him to that task. The good news of which Paul preached rests upon the authority of Jesus Christ himself. Paul now directs his energies toward building up the Christian Church. Paul knew that God called him before he was even born. God knows you intimately as well and he chose you to be his even before you were born. He wants you to fulfill the job he has given you to do. When people look at us, do they recognize that God has made a change in us, if not maybe we are not living our new lives as we should. Paul said “Yes Lord” and his life and whole world changed for him and for many others around the world. Let us also say “Yes Lord” and ask the Lord to help us change the world.


LUKE 7:11-17


Today’s Gospel shows us the compassionate Christ, the one who sees the heart not just the appearance. Mother Teresa calls us to look and see Jesus hiding in the disguise of the poor, the sick, the lame, the blind, the lonely, the broken hearted, the imprisoned and the lost and forgotten. He sees that fear in the widow’s eyes of being alone in the world. She will not have the luxury of a husband or a son anymore. He knew what a funeral procession meant to the surviving widowed mother and his heart felt tremendous sympathy for her. We read all through scripture that God shows great pity for the weak.

We see the Good Samaritan showing great pity and compassion for the man, the victim of a robbery, lying there on a deserted roadway. God surly saw his heart and must have been very pleased with the Samaritan. He gave of his time, his strength and his money without expecting a reward or even a thank you. He gave you and I a close and very personal view of his own heart. Scripture tells us that God’s love endures forever and ever. Can you picture the powerful exchange when we heard Jesus telling the woman very gently “don’t cry”. He then stepped forward and touched the coffin and said to the dead man “come back to life again”. Don’t you think that her life came back again too? Let us look at each other like he looked at that mother. In great power Jesus raised the man back to life.




The first reading shows the strong faith of Elijah raising the child from the dead by the word of God. We see in the second reading the power of faith Paul was given by God to preach the Good News. The Gospel reveals that God has great compassion for the weak.


This week let others see in you the power of faith, mercy and love by visiting a widow and testifying to the healing power of Christ. This week be a real ambassador for Christ.


                       THE BREAD OF LIFE

                     CATHOLIC BIBLE STUDY




Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.



FIRST DAY Reread last week’s readings.


  1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or from  the homily you heard on Sunday?



2. From what you learned, what personal application did you choose to apply to your life this week?




         (“Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything.”)


  1. What two things was Melchizedek, what did he bring out,  and who did he bless?    Genesis 14:18


  1. What does the name “King of Salem” mean? Hebrews 7:2


  1. Where is God’s abode, and what is another name for this  place?   Psalm 76:3


  1. Who is Abram, and what did God make him? Genesis 17:5


  1. By whom is Abram blessed? Genesis 14:19


  1. Why do you praise the name of the Lord? Psalm 148:5


  1. Who is blessed by the Lord? Psalm 112:2


  1. What did God Most High do? Genesis 14:20


  1. What did Abram give, and from what did he give it?      Genesis 14:20


  1. What is the vow Jacob made to the Lord, and what did he faithfully return to the Lord?   Genesis 28:20-22


Personal – In what way have you been blessed by the Lord, and what have you returned to the Lord?




(“For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you.”)


  1. From whom did Paul receive what he handed on to you, and  how did he receive it?  1 Corinthians 11:23, Galatians 1:11-12


  1. What was handed on to us? 1 Corinthians 11:23-25


  1. What did Jesus do with the bread on the night he was handed over, and who did he say it was for?   1 Corinthians 11:23-24


  1. Of what is Jesus mediator? Hebrews 8:6


  1. What did Jesus say the cup of wine was? 1 Corinthians 11:25


  1. What is the cup of blessing that is blessed and the bread  that we break?  1 Corinthians 10:16-17


  1. For whom was his blood shed? Luke 22:20


  1. What do we proclaim each time we eat the bread and drink  the cup?   1 Corinthians 11:26


  1. For what are we to wait? 1 Corinthians 1:7


  1. In what way are we to speak to one another? 1 Corinthians 14:6


Personal –  Each time you receive communion, what do you hand on or pass on to others?


FOURTH DAY             READ LUKE 9:11-17                GOSPEL

               (“Give them some food yourselves.”)


  1. What did the crowds do when Jesus went to Bethsaida, and  what did Jesus do when he saw them?    Luke 9:11



  1. As the day was nearing an end, who approached Jesus? For what reason did they ask him to dismiss the crowd? Luke 9:12


  1. What did Jesus tell the apostles to give the people?     Luke 9:13


  1. What did Jesus say was true food and true drink?      John 6:55


  1. What did Jesus say his food was? John 4:34


  1. What did the apostles tell Jesus was all they had?      Luke 9:13


  1. How many men were there, what did Jesus tell his disciples,  and what did the people do?    Luke 9:14-15


  1. What did Jesus do with the five loaves and two fish?      Luke 9:16


  1. What happened to the people when they ate, and how much   was left over?  Luke 9:17


  1. What does the Lord give, and who does he satisfy?      Psalm 145:15-16


Personal – How does the food you eat satisfy you?  In what way are you satisfied when you receive communion?


FIFTH DAY             READ PSALM 110:1-4

             (“Rule in the midst of your enemies.”)


Read and meditate on Psalm 110:1-4.


What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?


How can you apply this to your life?





                       GENESIS 14:18-20


     In today’s passage we see the powerful bond of family ties which inspired Abram to rescue his nephew Lot from being kidnapped by a powerful and ruthless king of a northern tribe. When Abram learned that his nephew was a prisoner, he immediately tried to help him.  Sometime, we must get involved in a very painful situation in order to help others. We should be willing to act right away when others need help (Proverbs 24:11).


     Melchizedek was a holy man whose name means “King of Justice” (Heb. 7:2). He was a priest of “the God of Highest Heaven.” He recognized that God was the creator of heaven and earth. Abram knew who he was and was paying respect to him. Abram gave Melchizedek one-tenth of the booty. We see that even in the land of pagan gods, tithing was a customary and acceptable action towards the “gods.” Abram followed and accepted ancient tradition, but he refused the “booty” won from the war. Abram chose to give his share away because he did not want others to think that he went into battle for greedy reasons.

     Abram wanted others to see that his actions were very just and that his life was centered around his God. Abram wanted people to say, “Look what his God has done for him.”  Abram did not want the attention of his “victory” to be centered on him. He wanted everyone to know that God had won him the victory. When people look at you, they need to see what God has accomplished in you, and what he is doing with you right now.

                     1 CORINTHIANS 11:23-26

      The Lord’s supper is a visible representation of the gospel, the death of Christ for our sins. It focuses on the remembrance of Christ’s death and the glorious hope of his return. In the Catholic Church we believe in the real presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist. This worship service is called “The Mass,” and it is a celebration of Word and Sacrament. It is also an act of fellowship among all Catholic believers. Our faith is strengthened through fellowship with Christ and with all other believers.

      What does the Lord’s Supper mean?  The early church told that Jesus taught us about the Lord’s supper on the night of the Passover (Luke 22:13-20). The Passover celebrated deliverance from slavery in Egypt, and the Lord’s supper celebrates deliverance from sin by Christ’s death on the cross. All Catholic Christians believe that when the words “This is my body,” and “Take this cup and drink” are spoken, the real presence of Christ appears in the bread and wine to become the body and blood of Christ. When we receive Christ in the Eucharist (which means thanksgiving) at a Catholic Mass, we respond by saying “Amen.” This means, “I believe it, yes, I am part of the body of Christ.”

      Through this new covenant that Christ has given us, we can now personally approach God and communicate with him. The old covenant was made on Mount Sinai between God and the Israelites (Exodus 19,20) and was designed to point to the day when Jesus would come. The new covenant completes, rather than replaces, the old covenant. We are recommitting ourselves to this new covenant every time we proclaim his Holy Word and partake of his body and blood at the Catholic Mass.

                          LUKE 9:11-17

      Jesus had tried to slip quietly away from the huge crowds and head for the town of Bethsaida, but they found out where he was going and followed him. He knew the people were hurting and had many needs, so instead of showing impatience at this interruption, he welcomed them and ministered to them. When people interrupt your schedule, do you see this as a nuisance or as a reason for your life and ministry?

      Jesus taught mainly about the kingdom of God, and he stressed that the kingdom was here and now, not some place and time in the future. There are many people today who do not believe that the kingdom of God is real and present in the hearts of those who believe in Jesus. It is as present with us today, as it was with the Judeans two thousand years ago.

      The disciples displayed a typical, logical, human reaction when told to feed the crowd. They took on the responsibility of having to perform the impossible. They felt that what they had to offer was far too little to get the job done. They were right, and Jesus knew that, but he was not depending on what the people brought. Jesus was giving, simply, because he knew their needs and he wanted to meet them. He does that today with all of us.

      Whatever we have, if we bring it to Jesus, he will give thanks, he will bless it, break it, and share it with others. That is the purpose of our life here on earth. Jesus did not have to feed those people. He could have said a prayer and then sent them away. But Jesus does not ignore needs. He is concerned with every part of our lives, physical, emotional and spiritual. Today we are called to continue the miracle of feeding others through him.


     The first reading shows Abram’s victory was not the battle, but God himself.  The second reading explains that “Amen” means “Yes, I believe I am part of the body of Christ.”  We see in the Gospel Jesus’ solution is the same today as it was yesterday – “Feed them.”

      This week, let the presence of Christ saturate your total being, and take the risk to feed your family and friends the food of eternal life.  Witness to them about what Christ is doing in your life.

     That is how you feed other people. You pray daily for them, and you encourage them to read and study his Holy Word. Then you show them the Word in action; you minister to their needs.  Begin feeding your own family; then feed others. You will be amazed when you discover you cannot run out of spiritual food. Let the “Amen” in you be heard throughout your family and friends.





Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.


FIRST DAY Reread last week’s readings.

1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or        from the homily you heard on Sunday?

2. From what you learned, what personal application did you

  choose to apply to your life this week?


(“…and I found delight in the sons of men.”)

1. What is the firstborn of the Lord’s way, and what is the 

oldest of his words?    Proverbs 8:1, 22

2. Where does wisdom cry aloud and raise her voice?

Proverbs 1:20

3. When was wisdom poured forth, and what was not settled into

place?   Proverbs 8:23-26

4. What came with wisdom?  Sirach 1:4

5. Where does all wisdom come from?  Sirach 1:1

6. When will wisdom not cease?  Sirach 24:9

7. How did God establish man?   Wisdom 9:1-2

8. When was wisdom beside God?   Proverbs 8:27-30

9. How was wisdom beside God, and what was she doing?

Proverbs 8:30-31

10. In what did wisdom find delight?  Proverbs 8:31

11. Who is the wisdom of God?  1 Corinthians 1:22-24

Personal –  In what way can you take delight in those around you and show the wisdom of God?  How can you recognize the wisdom of God, and what do you need to do to see it clearly playing on the surface of the earth?


(“…the love of God has been poured out into our hearts

through the Holy Spirit that has been given us.”)

1. How have we been justified, and what do we have with God

through our Lord Jesus Christ?    Romans 5:1

2. How have we been justified?   Romans 4:24-25

3. How is the manifold wisdom of God made known and where and how do we get boldness and confidence to approach God?  

Ephesians 3:10-12

4. To what have we gained access, and in what do we boast?

Romans 5:2

5. Of what else do we boast, and what does it produce?

Romans 5:3

6. What does Christ do in our afflictions and what does this

enable us to do?   2 Corinthians 1:3-4

7. For what do we need endurance?  Hebrews 10:36

8. What does endurance produce?   Romans 5:4

9. Who will never mature in character?  Sirach 23:15

10. What does hope NOT do, what has been poured out in our

hearts, and how has it been done?    Romans 5:5

11. What was Paul’s hope?  Philippians 1:20

12. How did God save us, and how did he pour it out on us?

Titus 3:4-6

Personal – In what way has affliction produced endurance in your life?  What has kept you going on, and how has the peace of God been evident in you during affliction?


(“He will guide you to all truth.”)

1. What was the reason Jesus did not tell his disciples any  more?  John 16:12

2. How did Jesus speak the parables to his disciples?  

Mark 4:33

3. Whom did Jesus say will guide us to all truth and what will he speak and declare to us?  John 16:13

4. In what does Jesus ask you to be consecrated, and what is

truth?  John 17:17 

5. Who will teach you and remind you of everything Jesus did?

John 14:26

6. Who testifies to Jesus, and what are you also to do?

John 15:26-27

7. What did Jesus say you would do if you love him, and for what would he ask the Father?  John 14:15-17

8. What will the Spirit of truth do, and what will he give

or tell you?  John 16:14

9. What belongs to Jesus, and what is he giving you?  

John 16:15

10. What did the father say to the son who was with him?

Luke 15:31

Personal – How has God’s Spirit guided you and taught you about Jesus and how to apply what he taught you to your life?  Give a specific example.


(“You have given him rule over the works of your hands.”)


Read and meditate on Psalm 8:4-9.

What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?

How can you apply this to your life?


PROVERBS 8:22-31

The Book of Proverbs gives us a person’s poetic demonstration of God’s wisdom.  Christian believers have always read this passage as a prophetic allusion to Jesus Christ, the second person of the Blessed Trinity.  This reading was about the word that would be made flesh in Jesus. Nothing is more immediate than the awesome spectacle of life, and nothing is more real than the wonder of creation.

Today’s reading shows us how to discern God’s hand at work in the world, and how to see the Father’s life-giving energy behind every created beauty.  The mystic in us “knows God” as we are struck with a sense of the sacred while gazing at a sunset. God is telling us that wisdom is the foundation on which all life is built.  Today’s reading shows wisdom as being the special attribute of God. Wisdom was present at the creation and works even today with the Creator as in the beauty of the sunset. Wisdom affects every aspect of our entire lives, from beginning to end.

You need to be sure that God’s wisdom flows through you and opens all corners of your life to God’s direction and guidance. Wisdom will be our main attribute when we put God first in our lives (Matthew 6:33). Look at your values and priorities. What is most important to you?  Where is God on that list?  Keep him first in everything you do. He will crown your efforts with his wisdom and his understanding.  You will see others with spiritual vision instead of plain human vision. Remember, the difference between wisdom and common sense is that common sense is the ability God gives to all people to think and make choices; he only gives wisdom  to those who follow him.

ROMANS 5:1-5

In this reading, St. Paul states that the core of our belief in the Trinity, is that we come to the Father through Jesus in the love which is the Holy Spirit.  Paul was writing to ordinary Christians, like us, about the experience of God’s love flooding the human heart. Nothing is more tangible than an intensely felt love or even our longing for it, and Paul boldly connects that experience with the Holy Spirit.

Paul is speaking about a peace that means being reconciled with God, knowing that he loves you not for what you do but simply because of who you are. Jesus paid the price for this special kind of relationship with his death on the cross. Because of Jesus, we have entry into the presence of the King of Kings and entry into the haven of God’s grace.

Our relationship with God has begun in faith which reveals to us that we are delivered from our past by Christ’s death. Hope grows as we learn all that God has in store for us, and God’s love supplies all our needs and enables us to reach out to others. In the future we will become, but now we must overcome. Scripture tells us that “eye has not seen, ear has not heard, nor can man even comprehend what God has in mind for those who believe in him.” (1 Corinthians 2:9). 

We can put all of our trust in God because he is in control of our future.  We can look at our times of difficulties and know, even if we do not understand how, that we will grow emotionally as well as spiritually. Problems we run into will develop our patience, which in turn will strengthen our character and deepen our trust in God.  Thank God for these opportunities to grow, and deal with them in his strength.

JOHN 16:12-15

Jesus teaches the apostles about the availability of the Holy Spirit. He told them that the Holy Spirit would teach them about the nature of their ministry. He also told them that they would face very difficult opposition and that the outcome of their opposition would be revealed by the Holy Spirit. They did not understand any of this until after Jesus’ death and resurrection. The Holy Spirit then revealed truths to them, and they in turn formed the writing of the New Testament. It is very important for you to remember that the truth into which the Holy Spirit guides you is the truth about Christ. The name for his followers bringing the revealed truth about Christ to all men through generation after generation is Christian “Tradition.”

Understanding of this revelation is bound to be an ongoing process, because Jesus knew that the disciples were not capable of understanding at that point in time. He knew that his Spirit that followed him would enlighten, empower, and sanctify his followers. He knew that they would need time to fully understand their role in bringing Christianity to the waiting world.

He knows of our limitations today, and he has left the same Holy Spirit for us to receive and to empower us. The development of the apostles’ faith and the faith of the early church demonstrate to the whole world that the Holy Spirit is revealing the truth of Christ to all peoples. All truth is God’s truth, and the revelation of all truth is the work of the Holy Spirit. When you say “Yes, Lord,” the power of the Holy Spirit reveals to you that you are at last really set free; Jesus is the truth, and only through him can you really be free (John 8:32).


In the first reading the Word was made flesh and he dwelt in their midst (John 1:14).  The second reading shows the core of the Holy Trinity as we come to the Father through Jesus in the power of the Holy Spirit. We see in the Gospel that behind all truth is the presence of God.

This week, let us celebrate the Blessed Trinity by being open to the power that the Holy Spirit has given us. We have seen that the real power is the power of truth. This week, speak to your family only in the Spirit of truth. Truth means being humble, gentle and obedient to God’s Holy Word.  Your words of truth, matched by your actions of service, will show those around you that the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit are alive within you and the name of Jesus will set you, as well as others, free.



Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.


FIRST DAY Reread last week’s readings.

1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or from the homily you heard on Sunday?

2. From what you learned, what personal application did you choose to apply to your life this week?


            (“All were filled with the Holy Spirit”)

1. What day had come and where were the disciples gathered? Acts 2:1

2. What day was Pentecost celebrated after the Passover, 

what are other names for it?  Leviticus 23:15-16,

Deuteronomy 9:10, Exodus 23:16 and Numbers 28:26.

3. What suddenly happened from up in the sky, and where was it heard?  Acts 2:2

4. Read the following scripture, and tell what the Spirit gives to a person?  Ezekiel 37:9, 14

5. What appeared, and what did it do?  Acts 2:3

6. What was Jesus’ promise just before he ascended to heaven? Acts 1:5, 8

7. With what were all filled, and how did they express

themselves?  Acts 2:4

8. What did the Spirit prompt them to do?  Acts 2:4, Acts 4:31

9. Who was staying in Jerusalem at the time, and what did they hear?  Acts 2:5-6

10. About what were they confused?  Acts 2:6

11. What was their reaction?  What did they ask, and about what were they so amazed?  Acts 2:7-11

Personal – How can your family or friends identify the Spirit of God’s presence in you?  What comes forth from your mouth, and what do you need to do so people will be astonished by your words?


 (“No one can say “Jesus is Lord,” except in the Holy Spirit.”)

1. What is Paul telling the brothers that you cannot do in the Spirit of God, and what can be said only in the Holy Spirit? 1 Corinthians 12:3

2. What is there different, but with the same Spirit? 

1 Corinthians 12:4

3. There are different ministries and works but the same God who accomplishes what?  1 Corinthians 12:5-6

4. To each person the manifestation of the Spirit is given for what reason?  1 Corinthians 12:7

5. In what gifts should you try to be rich?  

1 Corinthians 14:12.

6. Fill in the following blanks:  The body is____ and has ______members, but all the members________ though they are, are___________ body; and so it is with Christ.  

1 Corinthians 12:12

7. In the one Spirit, who were baptized into the one body? 1 Corinthians 12:13

8. What have all of us been given to drink?  

1 Corinthians 12:13

9. Into whom have we been baptized?  Galatians 3:27

10. When were you chosen and sealed with the Holy Spirit?

Ephesians 1:13

Personal – From the above scriptures, how can you identify the manifestation of the Spirit in your life, and in those you come in contact with?   Reread 1 Corinthians 12:3, and take note of what comes forth from your mouth this week.


                  (“Receive the Holy Spirit.”)

1. Why did the disciples lock the doors of the place where they were?   John 20:19

2. Who came and stood before them, and what did he say to them? John 20:19

3. When he had said this, what did he show them?  John 20:20

4. What did the disciples do at the sight of the Lord?  

John 20:20

Personal – In what way has our Lord appeared to you when you have been gathered with others praying, and what has been your response?

5. What did Jesus say again and what is his gift to you?

John 20:21, John 14:27

6. Whom has the Father sent, and who sends you?  John 20:21

7. What did Jesus do to the disciples, and what did they

receive?  John 20:22

8. How did the Lord God form man, and how did he give him life? Genesis 2:7

9. If you forgive men’s sin, what happens to them, and if you hold them bound, what happens?  John 20:23

10. What did Jesus say on the cross to the Father, and whom should we imitate?  Luke 23:34, 1 John 2:1, 6

Personal – How do others see, spiritually and physically, the breath of his life in you?  How do others see you living out your sign of baptism through repentance, which means change?  How do others see you as you practice forgiveness of others, and ask others to forgive you?  How often do you feel the need for the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and why?

FIFTH DAY READ PSALM 104:1, 24, 29-31, 34

     (“When you send forth your spirit, they are created.”)

Read and meditate on Psalm 104:1, 24, 29-31, 34.

What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?

How can you apply this to your life?


                           ACTS 2:1-11

In today’s readings we celebrate the Feast of “Pentecost,” which means fifty (50). This was a feast that was celebrated about fifty days after Passover and was a feast of thanksgiving for the harvest. The first fruits of the crop were offered to God that day.  All Jewish men were expected to come to the temple for the feast.  The city was usually filled to overflowing, and it was fitting that this day was chosen as the day the Holy Spirit descended on the Apostles.

Today is, in reality, the birthday of the church, and the Christian religion was to be a church for the whole world.  The old law was given by God to Moses for the Jews only.  The new law, given by Christ and confirmed by the power of the Holy Spirit, was for all peoples.  That means you, and that means today, right where you are.  The very fact that you are reading this Bible Study is proof that the power of the Holy Spirit is drawing you near to him.

Let today be the day that you fall upon your knees and invite Jesus Christ to come into your heart and become the Lord of your life.  Take a few moments and confess to the Lord all that is twisted with you, and then ask him to let his Holy Spirit fill you with the power and peace that surpasses all understanding.  The celebration of Pentecost is for you as well as it was for the Jews in today’s passage.  Let the power of the Holy Spirit flow through you, and you will enjoy that same gift that the Apostles had, the gift of speaking in tongues.

The signs and wonders of that incredible day brought huge crowds of Jews in huge crowds to the place where the Apostles were staying.  This was the day chosen for the Apostles to go forward and make disciples of all nations.  We are called also to go forward and make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19).  Let us remember, the Jews celebrated the feast of the harvest on Pentecost.  Jesus’ Holy Spirit breathed life on the universal church on the Feast of Pentecost, or the Feast of Harvest.

We are called today to harvest the crop of souls for the Lord.  The Lord needs some good laborers to work in the vineyard.  Are you ready to join the workers?   

                   1 CORINTHIANS 12:3-7, 12-13

     In this passage, we see that the gifts of the Holy Spirit were given for the good of the whole community to help build up the body of Christ.  We should not refuse to use the gifts of the Holy Spirit nor claim them as our own.  Paul clearly warns against listening to false teachers and shows us how to check out their credentials. We are to find out what they teach about Christ.

We see people today who mock Jesus Christ, not only with their words, but in the way they live.  We see people using their gifts to split communities apart, and then trying to tell us that they are only doing God’s will.  Anyone can claim to speak for God, and we need only to look at some of the leaders in some countries, and we see a lot of false messiahs running around.  God has given us many different gifts, but we must remember they all come from the same Spirit, and they are to be used to help the community or church.  They will know we are Christians by the way we love and help one another.

Paul compares the body of Christ to a human body.  Every part is an individual, and has a specific job to do.  In their differences, all of the parts must work together for the good of the whole body.  Jesus Christ is the head, and the rest of us make up the body of Christ.  It is very important that we are not too proud of our abilities, and we must not compare ourselves with one another.  We are called to use our different gifts together, to spread the “Good News” to a world that is filled with “bad news.”  The church, which is the people who believe that “Jesus is Lord,” must be united in its belief in Christ. It must not let its leaders or members use any gifts to cause divisions or strife.

Faith in Christ is the core of Christian unity.  We are one body, with one spirit that is united in Christ with the Father through the power of the Holy Spirit.  When we were baptized into the Christian Faith, the Holy Spirit took up residence in us and we became the temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 3:16).  You, by your baptism, have been born into God’s family, and our common goal is faith in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

                          JOHN 20:19-23

     Today’s Gospel passage reveals to us the incredible gift of the Holy Spirit being given publicly to the disciples of Jesus by Jesus himself.  This is a tremendous feast day in the church.  We look back, and we see that Advent was a time to prepare for the Incarnation of God (God becoming man).  Christmas was the happening of this great Incarnation act.  We then moved into Lent and began to prepare ourselves for the sufferings endured by Christ on our behalf during his holy week.  We celebrated victory in Jesus’ triumph over death which guaranteed our union with him in heaven.  

Today, we celebrate in Pentecost the Holy Spirit coming to abide within his church.  This means abiding in you, in me, and all believers of the Lord Jesus Christ.  The Holy Spirit gives the power to preserve, teach, explain, and spread the gospel of “Good News,” which is a message of hope and love for everyone in the world.

The Holy Spirit that came upon the disciples and all of the people in the upper room is the same Spirit that wants to abide in us.  We can let him come into our heart, right now, by getting down on our knees and confessing our sins to the Lord. Invite him to come and take up residence in your heart, his temple, and let him take control of your life.  His power will flow through you, and your life will never be the same again.  His peace will be your peace, it will be a peace that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7).

The power from the Holy Spirit helps all of us live a life of holiness and wholeness.  We need to always remember that God’s plan for each one of us is to live a life that is abundant and full (John 10:10).  The Holy Spirit gives us the power in the name of Jesus to bind Satan and his cohorts, and in his Name, to loosen the Spirit of Life which is the Lord Jesus himself… to heal, to restore and, to forgive.  We can release others from the bondage of sin by our compassion and forgiveness.  

We are more than conquerors; we are children of the Living God, we are called to set the captives free and give sight to the blind.  We do that by forgiving them, and loving them through the power of the Holy Spirit, and in the mighty name of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.  Pentecost – the harvest is now, the Kingdom of God is at hand, come and be fishers of men.  I pray that the Holy Spirit today will fill you with his love and power, and fill all of us with gratitude for all that God has done for us.


The first reading tells us that we celebrate the birthday of the church when we celebrate “Pentecost.”  The second reading reveals that the gifts of the Holy Spirit are to be used to uplift the community.  The Gospel reveals to us that the Holy Spirit gives us power in the name of Jesus.  This power is a healing power.

Let us take a long look at our gifts, and then share them with others this week.  You might visit someone who is sick, or visit someone in jail.  You might write a letter to someone who is lonely, or cook someone a special meal.  Do something beautiful for God this week, and keep on giving your gift away.  God will never let you be without a gift – try it, you’ll like it.



Pray and ask God to speak to you through His Holy Spirit.


FIRST DAY Reread last week’s readings.

1. What was a helpful or new thought from the readings or from the homily you heard on Sunday?

2. From what you learned, what personal application did you choose to apply to your life this week?


(“Lord, do not hold this sin against them.”)

1. Who was filled with the Holy Spirit, and when he looked up to heaven, what did he see?  Acts 6:8, Acts 7:55

2. With what did Ananias tell Paul (Saul) to be filled, and who did he say sent him?     Acts 9:17

3. With what were the disciples filled?   Acts 13:52

4. What are you not to do, and with what are you to be filled?  Ephesians 5:18

Personal – How have you experienced the in-filling of the Holy Spirit?

5. What did Stephen say when he looked up and saw the heavens open?  Acts 7:56

6. What happened to Jesus after John baptized him and the

heavens opened?   Matthew 3:16-17

7. How did the people react to Stephen, and what did they do to him?   Acts 7:57-58

8. At whose feet did the witnesses lay their cloaks down,

and what did Stephen call out as they were stoning him? Acts 7:58-59

9. What did Jesus say as they were crucifying him, and what were his last words?   Luke 23:34, 46

10. What did Stephen say to the Lord just before he died?

Acts 7:60

11. How are we to treat our enemies?   Matthew 5:44

Personal – Are you holding anything against a family member, friend, or neighbor over a past hurt?   Pray about it and do what the Lord is telling you to do?


(“Let the one who thirsts come forward, and the one

who wants it receive the gift of life-giving water.”)

1. When the Lord comes, what will he bring?    

Revelation 22:12

2. What did Jesus tell his disciples, with whom will he come,and how will he repay us?   Matthew 16:24-28

3. Who did the Lord say he was?   Revelation 1:8, 22:13 

4. Of what is there only one?   Isaiah 44:6

5. Who are blessed, what have they done, and to what do they have a right?   Revelation 22:14

6. Where is the tree of life, and to whom does the Spirit speak? Revelation 2:7, Genesis 2:9

7. Who does Jesus say he is, and whom did he send to give this testimony to the churches?    Revelation 22:16

8. What does the Spirit and the bride say, who is to come 

forward, and who is to receive the gift of life-giving

water?    Revelation 22:17

9. Who gives life-giving water?   John 4:10

10. What does the one who gives this testimony say?

Revelation 22:20

Personal – Do you thirst for the life-giving water that only Jesus can give you, or do you see someone, whom you know, who is thirsty?  How can you answer the invitation to “come,” or how can you be an instrument in satisfying someone else’s thirst?


(“…because you loved me before the foundation of the world.”)

1. For whom did Jesus say he was praying?   

John 17:6-9, 20

2. Why does Jesus pray for them, and what does he say about the Father?   John 17:21, also see John 10:30 & 14:10

3. What did Jesus give to those who kept his Father’s word? John 17:22

4. How are we brought to perfection, and whom does the Father love?   John 17:23 and also John 16:27

5. Why did God send his Son into the world?  John 3:16-17

6. When did the Father love Jesus, and what are we to Jesus from the Father?    John 17:24

7. What has Jesus prepared for us, and how will we get there? John 14:2-3

8. Whom does the Father love and honor?   John 12:23, 26

9. Whom does Jesus and his disciples know and who does not know him?  What does Jesus call his Father?  John 17:25

10. Whom does the world love, and what will they do to you on account of Jesus?   John 15:19-21

11. What did Jesus make known, what is he making known, and for what reason?    John 17:26

12. What was kept by those to whom Jesus revealed the Father? John 17:6

Personal – What priority have keeping God’s Word and speaking God’s Word had in your life?   Evaluate last week and see what you spent most of your time doing and saying.  How do others see the love of Jesus in you?

FIFTH DAY READ PSALM 97:1-2, 6-7, 9

(“The heavens proclaim his justice,

and all people see his glory.”)

Read and meditate on Psalm 97:1-2, 6-7, 9.

What is the Lord saying to you personally through the Psalm?

How can you apply this to your life?


ACTS 7:55-60

The Jewish leaders were enraged by Stephen’s accusation that they were murderers of the prophets and destroyers of God’s laws. He accused them of even murdering the Messiah.  Stephen’s words of seeing Jesus standing at God’s right hand supported Jesus’ claim and angered the Jewish leaders.  In their guilt and rage, they would not tolerate Stephen’s words, so they mobbed him and killed him.

Today people may not kill us for witnessing about Christ, but they will let us know they do not want to hear the truth and will often try to silence us.   In many lands, those who try to protect the rights of the unborn children against abortion are ridiculed, beaten, and sent to jail.  These Christians are responding by not standing by and doing nothing while innocents are being slaughtered (Proverbs 24:11).  Keep honoring God in your words, your worship and in your actions. You may experience the rejection of many people to your message, but some will turn to Christ and your effort will be noticed more than you realize. 

Paul is introduced into today’s reading (verse 58) as a murderer and then later we see him as a changed, repentant apostle of the Lord. This tells us that the power of God’s love can change anyone who is open to his call. Paul was tremendously qualified to preach to the Jews because he too had once opposed Jesus Christ and his Christian followers. He understood the opposition and was, therefore, able to be compassionate and forgiving, as well as encouraging them to become free in Christ. Paul never forgot that day when he watched in silence and let the evil actions of those men destroy the life of a very holy man. He knew that he could never be silent again, and he spent the rest of his life preaching the good news of Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior of the whole world. We need to speak out in Jesus’ name and let people see in us the holiness of St. Stephen.

REVELATION 22:12-14, 16-17, 20

The Risen Christ is coming, and he makes two powerful claims, that there will be a final judgment and this will not be confined to non-believers. The eternal destiny of a true Christian believer is secure, but Jesus will look at how they handled gifts, opportunities, and responsibilities in their lifetime. He then tells us that he is complete. There is no beginning or end to his existence. Christ is telling us that he is the source and he needs nothing else. He is the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end.  The Jews said that since God was the beginning, he received his power from no one; since he was the middle, he shared his power with no one; and since he was the end, he never handed his power over to anyone.

Those who washed their robes in the blood of Christ were purified and have the right of entry into the “City of God” or the “New Jerusalem.”  Jesus, through his cross, has provided that grace by which man can be forgiven; but man has to hunger and thirst for that grace, and then he has to make use of that grace. Those who enter into the “Holy City” or heaven are the ones who have accepted Jesus as Lord. In the new and eternal life, people will eat from the tree of life because their sins have been removed by Christ’s death and resurrection and they will live forever. 

If we have confessed our sins, repented, and accepted Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior, we will have the right to eat from this tree.  The church has been the faithful guardian that has protected us, taught us about Jesus Christ, and has presented him to us in sacrament and word.  The church, in the name of Jesus, through the power of the Holy Spirit brings glory to God the Father by extending the invitation to the whole world to come to Jesus.

JOHN 17:20-26

Jesus completes his prayer to the Father. He began by asking his Father to glorify him so that he may glorify the Father. He told his Father that he did everything that was asked of him, and now the hour of glory had come. His glory would be the cross; it was not his will but he obeyed his Father’s will even unto death on a cross (Phil. 2:2-11). Then he prayed for his disciples and asked God to keep them strong in their faith.

In today’s passage Jesus is praying for us. In this prayer, we see his confidence both in his Father and for those who are going to be Christ-followers. He knew that in a very short time he was going to be betrayed, arrested and killed, and he still was confident that his disciples would carry on his name. He was praying for the new church to come. He prayed for a unity of heart, not administration, not a unity of ecclesiastical organization. He prayed for a unity of personal relationships. 

We have seen the unity between Jesus and his Father was love and obedience. Jesus prayed for a unity based on the relationships of heart to heart, not denomination to denomination. Jesus prayed that a unity would exist in which people loved each other because they loved him.  Christian unity overcomes all differences because it joins people together in love. It is more natural for people to be divided then united.  It is more natural for people to fly apart then to come together. But real unity between all Christians would require a “supernatural” solution, and that solution is loving one another as Jesus has loved us.


In the first reading we see that evil can only succeed when good men do nothing. In the second reading we see Jesus is the beginning, middle and the end. The Gospel shows unity does not have to mean uniformity.

This week, bring unity into your own heart by praying that God will change your attitude toward others who do not believe and practice their faith in God like you. Then look around you and see who is not of the same faith as you, and then let them experience your respect, your kindness, and your generosity.  Then love them just as Jesus loves you. You will be amazed at the power and result of your witness of Christ.