Discussion Questions

First Reading

1 Kings 17:10-16

F1. The widow is asked to give away the last bits of flour reserved for her final meal. As a result, she receives a jar of flour that doesn’t ever go empty. Was it a a leap of faith for her? Can you relate to her situation?

F2. Did God reward the widow in this reading? Are there usually rewards for helping others? How does one develop a habit of giving—baby steps or all at once? On a scale of one to ten, rate your ability to give.

Second Reading

Hebrews 9:24-28

S1. Compare Christ’s sacrifice with those of the two widows, the one in the First Reading and the other in the Gospel.

S2. What did God the Father give away?


Mark 12:38-44 or 12:41-44

G1. In the Gospel Jesus says about the scribes “They devour the houses of widows and, as a pretext recite lengthy prayers.” If there is a split between what you do in your heart and what you say with your lips, is hypocrisy present?

G2. In discussing a crisis of values Pope Francis repeats his call for Catholics to seek out people on the fringes of society, like the widow in the story, who need help the most. Are you called to action when you hear about starving people needing food, or homeless people needing shelter? What can you do?

If we step outside of ourselves, we will find poverty … today, and it breaks my heart to say it, finding a homeless person who has died of cold, is not news. Today, the news is scandals, that is news, but the many children who don't have food—that's not news. This is grave. We can't rest easy while things are this way. … We cannot become starched Christians, too polite, who speak of theology calmly over tea. … We have to become courageous Christians and seek out those (who need help most).

Pope Francis Insists Church Must Help Poor,
Not 'Speak Of Theology' 05/18/2013

**From Saint Louis University

Kristin Clauson