Working with the Word
Focusing the Gospel
Key words and phrases: choosing places of honor; move up to a higher po- sition; do not invite your friends . . . ; invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; resurrection of the righteous
To the point: In this Gospel Jesus challenges both guests and host at a dinner. Jesus calls the guests to let go of seeking places of honor and to choose seats that lead to being called “to a higher position.” Jesus calls the host to invite as his guests those who have only themselves to give in return, for which the host will be repaid at the “resurrection of the righteous.”
Connecting the Gospel …
... to the first reading: Humility is, in part, knowing one’s strengths and weaknesses (see First Reading) and one’s place (Gospel). But it is more. Humility is the virtue by which we acknowledge our status before God: we are “the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind” who come to God’s table because of God’s invitation and generosity.
... to experience: Jesus in this Gospel is not negating meals with family and friends! He is teaching us that our generosity must extend beyond our immedi- ate circle to include everyone—especially those in need—whom we might meet.
**From Saint Louis University