Faith · Religious life · spirituaility

October 9th – Gratitude, an expression of faith.

Scripture Reflection  . . .

First Reading: 2 Kings 5:14-17

Responsorial Psalm:  Psalm 98

Second Reading: 2 Timothy 2:8 – 13

Gospel: Luke 17:11-19

The Readings for this the Twenty-Eighth Sunday in Ordinary time appear to follow this sequence:  an experience of healing, an act of gratitude, deepening of faith.

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In the Second Book of Kings, Naaman (a Syrian and thus a stranger to the Jewish Religion) is healed of leprosy.  In his gratitude he seeks to give gifts to the Prophet Elisha and declares, ‘Now I know that there is no God in all the earth, except in Israel.’

In the Second Reading, St. Paul speaks of his faith in Christ Jesus and the promise of eternal salvation, despite his sufferings.  His life reveals the foundation of this faith.  A persecutor of Christians, he was left blind after a vision in which he heard the voice of Jesus. He received healing of sight and experienced a conversion of faith (See Acts 22:3 -16). In the First Letter to the Thessalonians, St. Paul reminds us, “In all circumstances, give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.” (5:18).

We hear the story of the Ten lepers in today’s Gospel.  Jesus heals them when they plea, ‘Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!’  However only one of them (a Samaritan, a despised member of society) returns to Jesus to give thanks and praise.  In turn, this man receives even deeper healing, the salvation that St. Paul speaks of; ‘your faith has saved you.’

The Responsorial Psalm declares, “The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.”  We are called to express our gratitude and “sing joyfully to the Lord,”  that salvation and healing are for everyone regardless of their nationality, their religion, their status in society.  All our welcome to the table of healing, gratitude, faith.

In Our Lives as Sisters of The Holy Redeemer . . .

Expressions of gratitude and faith this past week include:

Our 3 Sisters in Leadership stepped away for a time of rest and planning.  Their actions speak of their faith in God’s Spirit at work in the Congregation.

Another Sister took her annual retreat at a local spirituality center and returned giving thanks for this grace-filled time of prayer and renewal.

On Friday, the new class of Second Graders from a local parish school began tending to the school garden led by one of the Sisters.  Their happy chatter and liveliness gave praise to God, our Creator as they planted garlic and strawberries.

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Last evening, a  few more Sisters participated in a fundraiser for one of our ministries for women and children experiencing homelessness in North Philadelphia.  They expressed gratitude at the generosity of so many benefactors who believe in the mission of this special ministry.  Learn more.

In Your Life . . .

A Litany of Thanks

We invite you to pause and write a list of all that you are thankful for this past week.  After you have written this litany of thanks read it over.  What does it say to you about your faith?

We offer this song of praise.  Blessings on your week!

For The Beauty of the Earth
1. For the beauty of the earth
For the beauty of the skies,
For the love which from our birth
Over and around us lies,
(Chorus)
Lord of all, to thee we raise
This our hymn of grateful praise.
2. For the beauty of each hour
Of the day and of the night,
Hill and vale, and tree and flow’r,
Sun and moon, and stars of light,
3. For the joy of human love,
Brother, sister, parent, child,
Friends on earth, and friends above,
For all gentle thoughts and mild,
Text: Folliott S. Pierpoint, 1835-1917
Music: Conrad Kocher, 1786-1872
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