Accountability and Support
“Iron is sharpened by iron; one person sharpens another.”
– Proverbs 27:17
Monthly Focus on Study
What have I studied during the past 30 days to help me better understand the gifts of God?
M1. Bible Reading
M2. Books of Formation
Discussion Questions for November 18, 2018
Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time
Daniel 12: 1-3
In those days, I Daniel,
heard this word of the Lord:
"At that time there shall arise
Michael, the great prince,
guardian of your people;
it shall be a time unsurpassed in distress
since nations began until that time.
At that time your people shall escape,
everyone who is found written in the book.
"Many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake;
some shall live forever,
others shall be an everlasting horror and disgrace.
"But the wise shall shine brightly
like the splendor of the firmament,
and those who lead the many to justice
shall be like the stars forever."
First Reading Discussion Questions
F1. “But the wise shall shine brightly … ” Can you think of people you have known or known about who have died and shine brightly for you? If so, which of their qualities would you like to emulate in your life? Did their concern for others start out small and then expand to wider and wider circles?
F2. Name some people who have led “many to justice” and are now “like stars forever.” Since stars are at times used for navigation, how can people like Oscar Romero and Martin Luther King show us the way?
Hebrews 10:11-14, 18
Brothers and sisters:
Every priest stands daily at his ministry,
offering frequently those same sacrifices
that can never take away sins.
But this one offered one sacrifice for sins,
and took his seat forever at the right hand of God;
now he waits until his enemies are made his footstool.
For by one offering
he has made perfect forever those who are being consecrated.
Where there is forgiveness of these,
there is no longer offering for sin.
Second Reading Discussion Questions
S1. Compare and contrast old covenant priests and their repeated sacrifices with Jesus and his one sacrifice? How do the many celebrations of the Eucharist fit into the one-sacrificial event?
S2. Jesus won redemption for us. Does he just hand it to us? What part do we have in it? Does God ask you for sacrifices? How can your sacrifices help anything?
Jesus said to his disciples:
"In those days after that tribulation
the sun will be darkened,
and the moon will not give its light,
and the stars will be falling from the sky,
and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.
"And then they will see 'the Son of Man coming in the clouds'
with great power and glory,
and then he will send out the angels
and gather his elect from the four winds,
from the end of the earth to the end of the sky.
"Learn a lesson from the fig tree.
When its branch becomes tender and sprouts leaves,
you know that summer is near.
In the same way, when you see these things happening,
know that he is near, at the gates.
Amen, I say to you,
this generation will not pass away
until all these things have taken place.
Heaven and earth will pass away,
but my words will not pass away.
"But of that day or hour, no one knows,
neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father."
Gospel Discussion Questions
G1. “The Word of God will not pass away.” What do you take along with you when you die? Is there any correlation between love and the Word of God that does not pass away? Is there anything you can you do to stretch your capacity to love?
G2. Until we reach our final destination, full communion with the Lord in the Kingdom of God, what does Pope Francis consider the job of the Church or the People of God while we are here on earth? How are we to be the leaven in humanity?
Being Church means being God’s people, in accordance with the great plan of his fatherly love. This means that we are to be God’s leaven in the midst of humanity. It means proclaiming and bringing God’s salvation into our world, which often goes astray and needs to be encouraged, given hope and strengthened on the way. The Church must be a place of mercy freely given, where everyone can feel welcomed, loved, forgiven and encouraged to live the good life of the Gospel.
Evangelii Gaudium, 114, page 92
Suggested Strategies for Managing the Clock
For those with smaller groups or those who have the luxury of enough allotted time, it is suggested that the group cover each question from the monthly focus through the Gospel discussion questions
For those with larger groups or don't have the luxury of operating on God's Time, it is suggested that the group cover the monthly focus question and then feel free to skip around and attempt to answer only a few questions - whether that’s just the gospel, or the second reading and gospel, etc.