19th Sunday of Ordinary Time

Call to worship

In today’s Gospel, Jesus reminds us that being blessed means that we must be prepared and vigilant, always ready to meet our Master.

  • To the point: What, really, does the Father give us? What is the treasure that is to claim our hearts? The “inexhaustible treasure in heaven” the Father gives us is the Son (the Master). Our hearts must lie with the Son, for he is our treasure. Those servants who are formed by this treasure abide by the Son’s expectations and seek to carry them out. Faithful servant do as the Son would do — their actions follow their heart.
  • Connecting the Gospel (Luke 12: 32-48) to the first reading: The “holy children of the good” were putting God’s plan into effect just as the “faithful and prudent steward” (Gospel) was putting into effect the Master’s will.
  • Connecting the Gospel to experience: There are many treasures found in this life, for example, family, home, community, friendship, integrity. Good as these are, they are nonetheless exhaustible. What the Father offers us is an inexhaustible Treasure: the fullness of the Life of the risen Lord.

Faith is confident assurance concerning what we hope for — seeing in trust. Faithful people have conviction about things unseen. So it was with Abraham and Sarah who believed they would give birth in old age, with Noah on his improbable ark, with Moses abandoned as a child against improbable odds.

Faith felled the walls of Jericho and fed the hungry with manna. These heroes of faith did not live to see what was promised; though faith eases confusion, dulls pain and redeems time, it never brings final clarity.

Faith-filled people wait with vigilance, like the blessed servant doing his master’s will, even in the master absence. Being prepared for the master’s arrival is not a matter of calculating time; it is about faithfulness. In the master’s absence, the faithful servant acts as the master himself — caring for others, giving them all they need. Doing the master’s will means becoming the master in his absence- this is true discipleship.

Centering prayers

The Gospel

(Luke 12: 32-48)

Be like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding, “
ready to open immediately when he comes and knocks.

Lord, you tell us to be vigilant and watch for your coming.
Help us find you in the Eucharist,
help us find you in those we love,
in strangers we meet, in the poor and needy.
Let us find you in our sleep, in our work and in our play;
watch for you in our laughter and in our tears,
in the deep souls of everyone we meet
every day in the dusk and in the dark of night.
And give us courage to stand against sins
that harm all whom you love.
Please don’t knock. Just come right in.

The First Reading

(Wisdom 18: 6-9)

The night of the Passover was known beforehand to our fathers,
that, with sure knowledge of the oaths in which
they put their faith, they might have courage.

Our forebears got small signs that gave them nerve
to trudge through wastelands, to face every misery and every threat.
O God, give us your signs small or large.
Let us trust and know you are with us,
the days that we walk in the dry deserts of our lives.

The Second Reading

(Hebrews 11: 1-2,8-19)

For he thought that the one who made the promise was trustworthy.

Abraham remembered your promise:
offspring countless as the stars.
Yet he lifted his sword
to sacrifice his and Sarah’s only child.
God, you loved his trust, and you held back
his blade. Let us, too, listen to your promises.
We do trust. We believe. Help our unbelief.

Copyright © 2022, Anne M. Osdieck

Music for reflection