Today’s scriptures call us to open our hearts in radical ways, such as the prominent woman in today’s first reading who adds a room to her house for the holy prophet.
But Jesus demands even more of his disciples. They must love him over their parents. They must be ready to let go of tradition and habit and even of their very own identity. They must be willing to trust him with their futures in order to be worthy of taking up the cross and really follow.
We begin our prayer today asking for the strength of prophets, saints and holy people who serve as example to us of how to let go of self, how to embrace the Christ and how to offer Him to the world.
  • To the point: At the center of this Gospel is Jesus’ startling statement that the only way we have life is to lose it. We lose our life by choosing to love Jesus even above family and be serving others, even “little ones.”
  • Connecting the Gospel to the first reading: The Shunemite woman served the prophet Elisha and provided for his needs; by so serving she received in turn the gift of life.
  • Connecting the Gospel to experience: We all experience the impulse to express our love concretely, for example, by sending cards, flowers, inviting the beloved to dinner, etc. We concretely express our love for Jesus by serving others.

Centering prayers

The Gospel
(Matthew 10:37-42 )
“And whoever gives only a cup of cold water to one of these little ones to drink because the little one is a disciple — amen, I say to you, he will surely not lose his reward.”
What is needed most now?
For our whole earth, it is clean air
it’s a vaccine for a virus end,
it’s a meal for the hungry.
For our racial problems
it is justice and love,
for all who thirst,
it’s a cup of water.
O God, you ask so little of us.
Please help us give each other
the “cup of water” we all need.
Give us desire and your knowledge and insight
to fix all the problems we have.
Let us not ignore even one soul’s need.
Every one of us thirsts for you.
The First Reading
(2 Kings 4:8-11, 14-16a)
“I know that Elisha is a holy man of God. Since he visits us often, let us arrange a little room on the roof.”
When prophets, such as a Romero, speak,
they lay down their lives.
If we are not ready to go that far,
to speak out loud and clear,
then give us the grace
to stand by them and learn …
Learn to speak quietly,
each in our own way,
for you.
The Second Reading
(Romans 6:3-4, 8-11)
“You too must think of yourselves as dead to sin
and living for God in Christ Jesus”.
What does it mean, O Christ?
First, to receive prophets,
and other times to become one?
Will you help us offer a cup of cold water,
and let us receive it?
Be with us
every minute of our lives.

Copyright © 2020, Anne M. Osdieck.

“Take Up Your Cross”

(Jaime Cortez; rendition by Chris Brunelle)

Bach: “Air On A G String”