"You received what was good during your lifetime"

Last Sunday’s Gospel ended with a warning from Jesus: “You cannot serve both God and mammon.” This Sunday's Gospel from Luke 16: 19 - 31 tells about a man who thought that he could, but failed; to his detriment. We are enjoined to be detached from material things in order to have the freedom to fulfill God's plan for our lives.

Sunday Readings' Discussion Questions
Twenty-sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Sep. 29, 2013 (26C)
From the Center for Liturgy at Saint Louis University

Sunday Mass Readings
Podcast of the Readings
Video of Reflections on Readings
Lecturas y Comentarios
Prayer of the Hours
Burning Question: Do you invite the poor to your banquet?

Questions on Sunday's Readings for use by discussion groups,
prayer groups, or for individual prayer.
First Reading
Book of the Prophet Amos, Chapter 6, Verses 1, 4-7

1. Do wealth and self-indulgence necessarily go together? How are self-indulgence and complacency related to your ability to respond to the needs of others?

2. The people in this reading are complacent and comfortable. Would you choose them to be your best friends? Why? What’s missing in a person’s life if all possible time and effort is consumed with caring for his or her needs and desires? With these people at one end of the spectrum and Mother Teresa at the other, where do you fall?

Responsorial Psalms
Psalm 146:  7, 8-9, 9-10

1.  Our psalmist assures us that the Lord gives food to the hungry.  Describe how your spiritual hunger is satisfied by the nourishment you receive from God.

2.  The Psalm says that the Lord thwarts the way of the wicked.   Reflect on your experience and give an example of how the Lord has overcome evil that was
a threat to you.

Second Reading
First Letter of St. Paul to Timothy, Chapter 6, Verses 11-16

1. Elsewhere, Jesus said to Pilate, “The reason I have come into the world is to bear witness to the truth.” What do you do that bears witness to the truth? Do you think, “Lay hold of eternal life” means that you should try to grab eternal life or that you should let God grasp you?

2. How do patience, gentleness, and love relate to your bearing witness to the truth? How much gentleness do you have? Patience? Love?

According to Luke, Chapter 16, Verses 19-31

1. Where would you find Lazarus today? What would he or she look like? Do you recognize and care for him or her as God’s beloved child, or do you want to roll up your window when you see him or her coming?

2. How does it help you to care for Lazarus? Compare and contrast the person who takes care of the poor with the complacent person in the First Reading, who sits around drinking wine and anointing him/herself all day with the best oils?

Online Sunday Bible Study Group
Please share below your reflections on the above Sunday Readings with other ParishWorld readers. May we be blessed by God's words as reflected in your thoughts and experience-sharing.


  1. You don't have to be rich in order to forget what a relationship with God can be like. True the Scripture repeatedly makes it hard on the rich to get to heaven. We read that and forget that we are all "rich" to some degree. We prefer our comfort to anything and everything else; we pursue our career with unswerving focus to the exclusion of our relationship with people and of course with God. We are "good" people, not doubt. We are also in love with our own comforts and relate to them more than with God's love for us. That is the richness that we have to avoid.

  2. Barry Lamont12:57 PM

    “The Lord gives food to the hungry,
    sets captives free.”

    Christ Jesus carries out the promises of the Psalm; He sets us captives free and gives sight to us so we can truly see.

    The Lord raises us up when we are down. He sustains us -- with real food and drink. Who among us is not hungry for a closer relationship with The Lord?

    You may ask, “When were we oppressed,
    or hungry, or in prison?” Have we not
    been under pressure from the evil one
    to commit sin? Have we not been held
    captive at one time or another by our sins?
    And do we not experience a hunger for
    the Lord and for a deeper faith?

    That same power that gives sight to the
    blind and raises up those who are bowed
    down is available to free us from whatever
    imprisons us. All it takes is to receive Him
    and open our hearts to our Savior.

    The Psalm is telling us we really need
    to humble ourselves if we want to be
    raised up with Jesus. That may be hard
    to do if it means we have to swallow our pride
    and put aside worldly concerns. But if we truly
    want to be set free from the sins that bind us,
    then we need to repent and bow down
    before the Lord, accept our brokenness,
    and seek His healing ministry. Only then
    will we begin to have a right relationship
    with the Lord.

    Having done so, we can pray this Psalm,
    not only in honor of the heavenly Father,
    but also in honor of Christ Jesus, whom
    God exalted. We then join with the psalmist
    and sing, “The Lord shall reign forever;
    our God, through all generations.”