27th Sunday of Ordinary Time

Call to worship

“The vision still has its time; it presses on to fulfillment; it will not disappoint.”

God’s vision will be fulfilled when our faith turns into action. We are called to hold our despair not only with patience but with strong faith — faith that can bring God’s vision to fulfillment.

  • To the point: Jesus tells the disciples that even a smidgen of faith can achieve great things. How do we increase faith? Faith increases through decisive obedience to what is commanded. How do we measure this kind of faith? By measuring our faithfulness. The faithful disciple of Jesus is never finished serving. The faith of a disciple is never finished increasing.
  • Connecting the Gospel (Luke 17:5-10) to the first reading: The prophet Habakkuk shows us in the first reading where our never-finished, increasing faith leads to life
  • Connecting the Gospel to experience: We tend to think of everyday responsibilities as mundane. But this gospel reveals the hidden dimension of such ordinary actions — they reveal and increase our faith.


Disorder is everywhere. With the prophet Habakkuk, we plead for help, but God does not seem to listen.

There is ruin in our cities, terrorism in our world, misery among the voiceless old, skepticism among the hungry young, division called by politics, greed among tyrants and would be leaders. Even the Earth groans with ominous quakes, hurricanes, floods and drought.

Wars are waged, women degraded; children disposed of. It is too much to bear. Habakkuk’s words resonate: “Destruction and violence are before me.” Where is hope?

What reasons do we offer loving spouses to bring children into this world? Increase my faith, they say. Give me a reason to believe. Show a sign; make a promise.

Jesus pierces through this disaster: “With faith the size of a mustard seed, you could uproot the sycamore.”

What could our paltry human acts of mustard seed faith, hope, or love accomplish amid such turmoil? Darkness is pierced by humble tiny sparks of light. “Stir into flame the gift God has given.”

Christians speak of peace when there is war, hope amid despair, truth where there are lies and cover up. We have Gospel faith. We know how to wait patiently, hopefully. The vision still has time; it presses on and will not disappoint.

Centering prayers

The Gospel

(Luke 17: 5-10)

The apostles said to the Lord: “Increase our faith.”

Faith, a mustard seed size, a pinhead’s worth
is enough you say, to uproot a mulberry tree.
Make us your true servants trusting that whatever
faith you give us will surely be enough.

The First Reading

(Habakkuk 1: 2-3, 2: 2-4)

“Why do you let me see ruin; why must I look at misery?

One by one they come, dragons named strife
come and sit on our chests and then suck all the air out of us.
Some from outside, some from within.
Lord, make our belief armor; let faith be our shield.
Our battles are your battles. Give us your victory.

The Second Reading

(2 Timothy 1: 6-8, 13-14)

“For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice.”

Holy Spirit, kindle your love in us.
Stir the coals of our lives till they flame out
with your love everlasting.

Music for reflection