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November 22, 2018 – Thanksgiving Day

The Cleansing of the Lepers Luke 17:11-19 This story of gratitude and faith interrupts the emphasis on the end times in Luke’s Gospel and in the movement toward Advent. In the story Jesus acknowledges that the faith of this man, a foreigner, has brought him salvation. Prayer: Thank you for giving me life and love, family and friends, and the many opportunities to serve you and your people.

November 21, 2018 – Memorial of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Parable of the Ten Gold Coins Luke 19:11-28 This parable is like the Parable of the Talents in Matthew’s Gospel. Jesus is telling the disciples that when he is gone they must not be idle or paralyzed by fear. They must wisely invest their time and efforts by continuing the work of his mission until he returns. Prayer: It is nearly impossible to imagine having the faith and trust of the mother and her seven sons from the book of Maccabees, but that is the level of trust you had in your Father and that you expect from me.

November 20, 2018 – Tuesday of the Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time

Zacchaeus the Tax Collector Luke 19:1-10 Though small of stature, Zacchaeus stands tall amidst his peers. As chief tax collector, he is a wealthy man, greatly disliked by the Jewish leaders. Yet he has no qualms about climbing a tree to see this man Jesus. His intentions are genuine as evidenced by his admittance of guilt and his desire to repent. Prayer: Who am I to judge who is in and who is out? I tend to do so without knowing their hearts as Jesus does.

November 19, 2018 – Monday of the Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time

The Healing of the Blind Beggar Luke 18:35-43 The crowd is trying to keep the blind man from bothering Jesus. As with other encounters with those who are seen as outcasts or insignificant, Jesus hears him and asks that he be brought to him. The man is not asking for alms but for healing. His faith is evident, and Jesus heals him. Prayer: In the same way that I cannot imagine what it must be like to be physically blind, I cannot imagine what it must be like to be spiritually blind. I know that my sight becomes blurry from time to time, but you always bring it back into focus.

November 18, 2018 – Thirty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time

The Coming of the Son of Man/The Lesson of the Fig Tree/The Need for Watchfulness Mark 13:24-32 Jesus tells his disciples that, just as there are signs of changing seasons, there will be signs of his coming. No matter how turbulent those signs may be, the disciples can find consolation in the sure knowledge that he will be with them. Even though no one knows when the Second Coming will happen, we must persevere and remain faithful. Prayer: No one knows me like you do. I don’t like waiting, and I especially do not like the unknown. But you are with me in my fearful state, and in that I am consoled.

November 17, 2018 – Memorial of Saint Elizabeth of Hungary, Religious

The Parable of the Persistent Widow Luke 18:1-8 Jesus is offering his disciples encouragement by telling them this parable. It is found only in Luke’s Gospel and has similarities to the man waking his neighbor (11:5-8). He is telling them that while they wait for the coming of the kingdom, they must pray persistently. If the judge finally acts in response to the woman’s persistence, imagine how much more God will do. Prayer: My impatience blinds me from seeing that you have answered my prayer. When will I ever learn that you give me what I need, not necessarily what I want?

November 16, 2018 – Friday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time

The Days of the Son of Man Luke 17:26-37 Jesus continues his discourse about the coming of the Son of Man. He uses the ancient stories of Noah and Lot and the examples of two men and two women to illustrate how suddenly the Son of Man will come. He reminds his listeners that they must not hold onto their daily lives or look back. Prayer: I don’t seem to know how to let go. I am afraid I will look back longingly. I want to be able to keep my gaze on you.

November 15, 2018 – Thursday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time

The Coming of the Kingdom of God/The Day of the Son of Man Luke 17:20-25 Jesus’ response to the Pharisees’ question about the coming of the kingdom can be summed up in the idea that it is “already but not yet.” He tells them that if they do not pay attention to the present signs—his ministry—they will not be ready for the fullness of the kingdom. Prayer: Undue concern about the when and the how of anything future blurs the significance of the present. You dwell in the present, Lord. You dwell in me right now.

November 14, 2018 – Wednesday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time

The Cleansing of the Ten Lepers Luke 17:11-19 Jesus heals the lepers and sends them off to the high priest for a ritual cleansing that will restore them to the community. Only one, a Samaritan, returns to Jesus to thank him. Jesus praises his expression of gratitude and criticizes the nine who did not take the time. Prayer: I pray for a constant attitude of gratitude from the time I get up in the morning until I go to bed at night. You have done so much for me because you love me. I thank you.

November 13, 2018 – Tuesday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time

Attitude of a Servant Luke 17:7-10 Jesus is talking to his apostles about discipleship. Disciples are servants of the Lord and must be concerned about what is expected of them and not with being rewarded for their work. The faithful service of the disciple is likened to the good work of a servant. Prayer: I know what I am obliged to do, but it often easier said than done. I pray for the courage to turn that knowledge into action.