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
M3.  Periodicals
M4.  Other

Discussion Questions for November 20, 2016 Sunday Mass
The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

First Reading

2 Samuel 5:1-3
In those days, all the tribes of Israel came to David in Hebron and said:
“Here we are, your bone and your flesh. 
In days past, when Saul was our king,
it was you who led the Israelites out and brought them back. 
And the LORD said to you,
‘You shall shepherd my people Israel
and shall be commander of Israel.’” 
When all the elders of Israel came to David in Hebron,
King David made an agreement with them there before the LORD,
and they anointed him king of Israel.

First Reading Discussion Questions
F1. Compare Jesus with David, each one as a shepherd, anointed one, and king. What is the difference between their kingships?

F2. On the cross Jesus was publicly proclaimed King in the three spoken languages in the area: Hebrew, Latin and Greek. Does this relate to God’s plan to bring all nations together in Jesus?

Second Reading

Colossians 1:12-20
Brothers and sisters:
Let us give thanks to the Father,
who has made you fit to share
in the inheritance of the holy ones in light. 
He delivered us from the power of darkness
and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son,
in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

He is the image of the invisible God,
the firstborn of all creation.
For in him were created all things in heaven and on earth,
the visible and the invisible,
whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers;
all things were created through him and for him.
He is before all things,
and in him all things hold together.
He is the head of the body, the church.
He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead,
that in all things he himself might be preeminent.
For in him all the fullness was pleased to dwell,
and through him to reconcile all things for him,
making peace by the blood of his cross
through him, whether those on earth or those in heaven.

Second Reading Discussion Questions
S1. “For him all the fullness was pleased to dwell.” What does fullness mean to you? Do you find parts of this fullness in this or that neighbor? Which part do you want most to dwell in you? Think of all the places you find goodness. Are they sacred? What is the goodness and beauty in your life saying to you about God?

S2. “He is the image of the invisible God. All things in heaven and earth were created in him, through him and for him.” Therefore, shouldn’t we heal the wounds of the environment? How?

Gospel

Luke 23:35-43
The rulers sneered at Jesus and said,
“He saved others, let him save himself
if he is the chosen one, the Christ of God.” 
Even the soldiers jeered at him. 
As they approached to offer him wine they called out,
“If you are King of the Jews, save yourself.” 
Above him there was an inscription that read,
“This is the King of the Jews.”

Now one of the criminals hanging there reviled Jesus, saying,
“Are you not the Christ?
Save yourself and us.”
The other, however, rebuking him, said in reply,
“Have you no fear of God,
for you are subject to the same condemnation?
And indeed, we have been condemned justly,
for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes,
but this man has done nothing criminal.”
Then he said,
“Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”
He replied to him,
“Amen, I say to you,
today you will be with me in Paradise.”

Gospel Discussion Questions
G1. According to Pope Francis, Jesus revealed himself as Mercy, from the beginning of his life to his last act. What does that mean to you? What does his assurance to the Good Thief confirm?

[The good thief] asks Jesus to remember him. There is so much tenderness in this expression, so much humanity! It is the need of the human being not to be forsaken; that God may be always near. …

On the Cross, [Jesus’] last act confirms the fulfillment of his plan of salvation. From beginning to end, he revealed himself as Mercy, he revealed himself as the definitive and unrepeatable Incarnation of the Father’s love. Jesus is truly the face of the Father’s mercy. And the good thief called him by name: “Jesus.” It is a short invocation, and we can all make it several times during the day, “Jesus.” Simply, “Jesus.” Let us do so throughout the day.

General Audience of September 28, 2016

G2. The good thief reached out to Jesus. How is he a model for us? Is anyone reaching out to you in any way? How about at work, at home, in your parish, in the local community, in the world community? If so, how will you heal their wounds and/or warm their hearts?

**From Saint Louis University & Anne Osdieck

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.