"Today salvation has come to this house"

In the Sunday Gospel for Nov. 3, 2013, Zacchaeus demonstrated his love for Jesus by making an effort to see him. For his part, Jesus demonstrated His love for Zacchaeus in particular, and for all men in general, by inviting himself to stay at Zacchaeus' house. What a marvelous exchange! Love for love!

Sunday Readings' Discussion Questions
Thirty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time, November 3, 2013 (31C)
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: Why do we pray for the dead?

Questions on Sunday's Readings for use by discussion groups,
prayer groups, or for individual prayer.

First Reading
Book of Wisdom, Chapter 11, Verses 22-26; Chapter 12, Verses 1-2

1. “For you love all things that are and loathe nothing that you have made.” What things do you think of when you hear this? God’s attitude toward every created thing is love. What is your attitude? How do you show reverence for creation? For your neighbor?

2. This reading is about God’s transcendence (God beyond our limits or so far above us). At the same time it is about God’s imminence (“Your Spirit is in all things,” He pitched his tent among us, God with us, at home with us). How do you feel about God when you think of these two attributes?

Responsorial Psalms
Psalm 145: 1-2, 8-9, 10-11, 13, 14

1. Our psalmist asks us (His faithful ones) to speak of God's might and discourse of the glory of God's kingdom.Give an example of how you have complied with our psalmist's appeals.

2. We are assured by the Psalm that the Lord lifts up all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down. Share how your faith has been strengthened by any hardships you may have undergone.

Second Reading
Second Letter of St. Paul to the Thessalonians,
Chapter 1, Verses 11-12; Chapter 2, Verses 1-2

1. When you are “shaken out of your mind” on your spiritual journey, do you think God can use your fellow believers or even non-believers to help you out? Give some examples of how this might work.

2. Paul wanted the Thessalonians to know that he was constantly praying for them. Does it help you to know people are praying for you? Explain. Does it help you to pray for people? Why?


According to Luke, Chapter 19, Verses 1-10

1. Was it out of the ordinary for a man to climb a tree in order to see? Was it out of the ordinary for a holy man to go to a “sinner’s” house for dinner? Was it ordinary for someone repenting to give half of all his possessions to the poor? How do you explain this? What extreme or extraordinary behavior does knowing Jesus Christ elicit from you?

2. Zacchaeus used the tree to observe Jesus. What would you do if you wanted to “see” where the Holy Spirit is and what it is doing in the world today?

Online Sunday Bible Study Group
Share your reflections on the comments sectoin below. May we be blessed by God's words as reflected in your thoughts and experience-sharing.


  1. Zacchaeus found his salvation by climbing a tree so that he could see the One who would climb a tree to assure the salvation of everybody.
    The two of them met so that we would be able to appreciate the cost of salvation, both to Jesus and to us.
    I twice stared down the barrel of a .45 Colt in the name of God, with no fear. I once was very ill and didn't take possession of the suffering but recognized that it all belongs to Jesus. This is what sets us apart from wordly behavior and puts us in the tree of life, right alongside Zacchaeus. Thank you, Lord.

  2. Barry Lamont9:06 PM

    Here are some relections on this week's Psalm (Psalm 145: Verses 1-2, 8-11, 13-14) and how the Psalm ties in to the Gospel and the two other scripture readings:

    This is a Psalm of praise in honor of
    the Father’s works of perfection (that includes us). Our 1st reading (Wisdom) says,
    ‘He loves all things that are;
    he loathes nothing that he has made.’
    The psalmist leads our response, our gratitude--
    Verse 10, “All your works give you thanks,
    O Lord, and your faithful bless you.”
    St. Paul in our 2nd reading tells us that
    We are to be glorified in Christ and
    His name is glorified in us.
    The psalmist speaks for us in Verse 11,
    “They speak of the glory of your reign
    and tell of your great works.”
    Our Gospel this week reminds us that
    Jesus came to search for
    And to save what is lost.
    And the Psalm confirms that
    “The Lord supports all who are falling and
    raises up all who are bowed down.” (Verse 14)
    All we have to do is repent and bow down,
    As Zacchaeus did that day in Jericho,
    To receive God’s grace.
    The Psalm says it correctly,
    (these should be our words)
    “Every day I will bless you;
    I will praise your name forever.”

  3. Barry Lamont2:28 PM

    “The Lord lifts up all who are falling
    and raises up all who are bowed down.”

    We may question why God allows us to suffer,
    why he allows “bad things to happen to good people.”
    We may ask, as the early believers probably did,
    “Why is it necessary to undergo such hardships
    to enter the kingdom of God?”

    Scripture tells us that afflictions are to be
    expected in our walk with the Lord. We may not
    understand what God is up to, but we can be sure
    that our faith will be strengthened if we stand fast
    in the face of suffering. We will become better
    witnesses for Christ if we are humbled; we become
    better servants if we bear up with our difficulties
    and trust in the Lord. As our psalmist tells us,
    “The Lord is trustworthy in every word, and
    faithful in every work.”

    Endurance is a Godly quality and will help us
    to get 'yoked' to Jesus. Having done that, together
    with our psalmist David, we join with the faithful
    and speak of the glory of God's reign and bless
    His name.

    The book of Wisdom tells us that God loves all
    things He has created, and loathes nothing He
    has made. David says it this way, “The Lord is
    good to all and compassionate toward all His works.”
    This verse is fulfilled in Sunday's Gospel –
    Zacchaeus could just as well sing this psalm,
    “I will praise your name forever, my king and my God.”

    When we reflect on what God has done for us,
    we remember that we live our lives amidst an
    unending stream of divine love. God has always
    done good things for us. That is God's nature –
    as the Psalm says, “The Lord is gracious and merciful
    and of great kindness.”

    And so we pray this psalm to bless, praise, and exalt
    the heavenly Father in His perfection and in His works.
    “Great is the Lord and highly to be praised.”