Praying for Those Who Need Repentance

Readings for Sunday, September 11, 2016 — 24th Sunday of Ordinary Time

Exodus 32:7-11, 13-14; Psalm 51:3-4, 12-13, 17, 19; 1 Timothy 1:12-17; Luke 15:1-32

Suggested Reflection Questions:

  • The people under Moses’ leadership and God’s protection have strayed from the path of holiness by making themselves an image of a calf and claiming it as their god. Moses intercedes on behalf of the people (a people who have forsaken his leadership) when God grows angry at their disobedience. What can the exchange between God and Moses teach us about the importance of intercessory prayer?

  • In his first letter to Timothy, Paul makes plain the extent of his sinful past and the merciful forgiveness he has received through Christ Jesus. Paul is an example of the abundant grace of God. He spent most of his life persecuting Christians and now, upon his conversion, he has become a passionate apostle. What can we learn from Paul’s example? How can his story change the way we view those who persecute the Church and do violence to Christians throughout the world?

  • Jesus says that there is more joy in heaven over one repentant sinner than there is over 99 righteous souls in no need of repentance. What do the parables of the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the prodigal son demonstrate about God’s mercy? Since God is ever-merciful and ever-just, can we also see evidence of God’s justice in these stories?