Discussion Questions

First Reading

Baruch 5:1-9

F1. “Led away on foot by their enemies … ”  Led or chased, is this happening today as well as in the time of Baruch? Where is the hope for the refugee suffering in exile today? Can you help God lower “the lofty mountains” or “fill the depths and gorges” for them in any way? How?

F2. God gave Jerusalem the name “the Peace of justice, the glory of God’s worship.” How does this name fit the Church today? If poorly, what would you do to make it fit? What would you like God to name your parish, your community, you?

Second Reading

Philippians 1:4-6, 8-11

S1. As you remain on the path, or The Way, St. Paul says that “the one who began a good work in you will complete it.” Who is the instigator of the good work in you? Who do you trust, yourself or God to complete your good works?

S2. What challenge is Pope Francis asking the Bishops to confront? “And this is my prayer: that your love may increase ever more and more in knowledge and every kind of perception, to discern what is of value. … ” Would he have them/us remain silent on refugees, environment, trafficking problems, or to discern answers?

I encourage you, then, my brothers, to confront the challenging issues of our time. Ever present within each of them is life as gift and responsibility. The future freedom and dignity of our societies depends on how we face these challenges. … The innocent victim of abortion, children who die of hunger or from bombings, immigrants who drown in the search for a better tomorrow, the elderly or the sick who are considered a burden, the victims of terrorism, wars, violence and drug trafficking, the environment devastated by man’s predatory relationship with nature—at stake in all of this is the gift of God, of which we are noble stewards but not masters.

Meeting with the Bishops of the United States of America

September 23, 2015


Luke 3: 1-6

G1.  Why does Luke name the historical references in the beginning of this Gospel reading? Does it help you to locate John the Baptist in history books?

G2. “All flesh shall see the salvation of God.” What are the implications for humanity in this saying? Is the entire world included in this plan? What are the implications for you? Do you watch all year round for God’s coming? What are some of the ways God comes to you everyday?

Anne Osdieck

**From Saint Louis University

Abby Upah