Sunday Says October 19, 2014
Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year A
Isaiah 45:1, 4-6
This week’s first reading from the prophet Isaiah starts out with an unexpected note calling the pagan king God’s instrument. During the Babylonian, he planned to free the captives and let them return to Jerusalem. Isaiah forcefully and authoritatively reminds him that even though he had the gifts to accomplish such a task, it was not by his own accord.
Sometimes we give ourselves too much credit too. God reminds us that He alone can do all things, and we are right to remember where we find our strength. God is able to perform miracles and fulfill plans form even the most unlikely of places.
Psalm 96:1, 3, 4-5, 7-8, 9-10
R/ (7b) Give the Lord glory and honor.
1 Thessalonians 1:1-5B
This week’s second reading is from St Paul’s letter to the Thessalonians. This is the first time in weeks that we have switched letters. In this introduction to this letter to a Church he had previously founded, he lets them know that even though he had to leave them, they remained united in prayer and by the Holy Spirit.
In case they had forgotten, his first message is to point out that they did not simply receive his teachings, but most importantly received the power of the Holy Spirit. Often in our own lives, we look at the Truth only at the surface and see it as a teaching among others, but we can’t separate it from the power that brings it to us.
This week’s Gospel from St Matthew shows the building resistance against Jesus from the Pharisees. They deliberately plot against Jesus and are desperately looking for ways to make Him look bad or confuse His teachings. Once they feel they have found a way to get him in trouble with the Jews and the Romans, they try to catch Him in promoting avoiding the taxes towards the empire that the Jews have come to hate so much. Without missing a beat, Jesus calls them out in their plan and undeniably wins the argument by reminding them that money isn’t everything and that the gold technically belongs to Caesar anyways.
This verse is often used in trying to convince people to give more to the government, but we can never forget the source of all our strength and life. The second part of the phrase is key to this message from Jesus: “…And [give] to God what belongs to God.”
A message from Bishop Vásquez
Reflection Question for a Gospel Meditation
- One of the messages of today’s Gospel is that we have a responsibility to participate in the civic life of our country. Faithful Catholics should pay their taxes, register and vote, serve on juries and perform other works of service for the community at large. Do you whole-heartedly participate in these activities? Pray for the wisdom and strength for you and others to do so.
Theme song Ignite – Soundwave soundwave.cc
Background Music This Week