Discussion Questions

First Reading
Genesis 22:1-2, 9a, 10-13, 15-18

F1. In Genesis 15:5 God promised Abraham that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars. It is to this promise that Abraham clings as he raises the knife to kill his son. Where do you fall on the continuum when blind trust is required of you, with 1 being low and 10 being high?

F2. Sometimes new things can make us fearful because we are not the ones in charge. We feel more secure when we have things under our control. Is it hard to abandon yourself to blind trust? What within you can help you with that trust?

Second Reading
Romans 8:31b-34

S1. The Old Testament describes “Emmanuel,” as God with us. This reading says God is not only with us, but for us. “Christ indeed intercedes for us.” Explain how this statement could be a real antidepressant. 

S2. How does intervening “for” someone, taking a stand for him or her, him or her relate to the commandment, “love your neighbor?” For whom can you intervene? Do you ever do it?

Gospel
Mark 9:2-10

G1. It took a blinding light for Peter, James and John to begin to see some hint of who Jesus was. Think of some problems in your country that need such illumination (for instance, immigration, human trafficking, environment). What needs to happen in these areas before you would be able to see something divine in them?

G2. Pope Francis speaks about the Transfiguration. In his view, what needs to happen when we climb the mountain? Come down from the mountain?

We all need to go apart, to ascend the mountain in a space of silence, to find ourselves and better perceive the voice of the Lord. This we do in prayer. But we cannot stay there! Encounter with God in prayer inspires us anew to “descend the mountain” and return to the plain where we meet many brothers weighed down by fatigue, sickness, injustice, ignorance, poverty both material and spiritual.

Pope Francis, Angelus, Second Sunday of Lent
16 March 2014


Anne Osdieck

**From Saint Louis University

Kristin Clauson