Daily Reading and Prayer

June 2021

Jun 30

June 30, 2021

Mt 8:28-34 Jesus is in gentile territory near the Sea of Galilee and encounters two men possessed by demons. It is the demons within the men who directly confront Jesus. They address him as Son of God and complain about his disturbing them before the coming of the kingdom. Jesus grants their request to be sent into a herd of swine, displaying...
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Jun 29

June 29, 2021

Mt 16:13-19 Jesus poses two questions to his disciples both having to do with who he is. He first asks about public speculation. Then he asks a more personal question. What do they believe about him? Peter takes the lead as spokesperson for the group and confesses his and their belief in him. He is the Christ, the Son of God. Sts. Peter and...
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Jun 28

June 28, 2021

Mt 8:18-22 The demands of discipleship are a harsh reality. Jesus is forcing both the scribe and the disciple to come to terms with this. Safety and security are not guaranteed on this journey and it may require walking away from family. No one ever said it would be easy but knowing I am never alone, knowing that you are beside me and when I am...
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Jun 27

June 27, 2021

Mk 5:21-43 Mark has intertwined two stories in this Gospel. The message they hold in common is in verse 36, “Do not be afraid; just have faith.” The official trusts in Jesus’ power even though he knows his daughter is already dead. The woman pushes through her fear and touches Jesus. Both are rewarded. We pray for all limited...
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Jun 26

June 26, 2021

Mt 8:5-17 A soldier, one who would seem least likely to come to Jesus for help approaches him. He is not asking for himself but for his servant. He speaks from his heart and Jesus responds to this man of faith. The healings continue with Peter’s mother-in-law and many others who were brought to Jesus that day. Initially, I remember being...
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Jun 25

June 25, 2021

Mt 8:1-4 The man with leprosy humbly and respectfully approaches Jesus. Those with the disease were feared and thus kept at a distance. Jesus didn’t send him away or even rebuke him. He touched him and the man was healed. I can’t help but think of the words from the evangelical gospel song, “He Touched Me.” Joy floods my...
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Jun 24

June 24, 2021

Lk 1:57-66, 80 Luke recounts the birth, circumcision and naming of John. As soon as Zechariah confirms the name John, given by the angel, he regains his power of speech. The people recognize God’s hand in this and wonder what John’s destiny will be. John prepared the way for your coming. In a similar way you have called me to prepare...
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Jun 23

June 23, 2021

Mt 7:15-20 Jesus cautions his disciples about those who seem to have good intentions. Is there genuine truth and integrity in what they say and do? He tells them to be prudent and look carefully at the effects of their work, a good indicator of their character.   I pray for the continued strengthening of the fruits of your Spirit. May my...
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Jun 22

June 22, 2021

Mt 7:6, 12-14 Jesus tells his disciples not to judge others but reminds them that discernment is necessary when dealing with those who do not believe. The Golden Rule is at the center of the Gospel, literally and figuratively. It is the summation of God’s law. Jesus concludes with a warning about the eternal consequences of not following...
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Jun 21

June 21, 2021

Mt 7:1-5 Jesus warns the disciples about the hypocrisy of judging others more so than themselves. He tells them to love and serve God and neighbor. God knows what is in their hearts and the hearts of others. Let God be the judge. Since I do not know as God knows what is in the minds and hearts of others, I need to spend less time criticizing...
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Jun 20

June 20, 2021

Mk 4:35-41 Jesus’ disciples have been with him through so much. They have seen him drive out demons and heal sickness. They have heard him teach and preach in the name of his Father. And now they are together in a boat on a stormy sea. Jesus is asleep. What’s going to happen to them? Their fear and doubts show that they are not there...
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Jun 19

June 19, 2021

Mt 6:24-34 Jesus’ sayings are timeless and very timely. Worry does not add to the quality or the length of life. If anything worry diminishes the quality and shortens life. Jesus tells his disciples to look to nature to see God’s abundant care for all that God has created. Seek and serve God first. The rest will be given. If ever...
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Jun 18

June 18, 2021

Mt 6:19-23 Jesus is speaking to his disciples about what he calls worldly and heavenly wealth. As hard as they might try to hold on to earthly things, those will not last. That which is important to their relationship with God will endure on earth and in heaven because it is the true treasure. We do our best to work hard, to get ahead. We plan...
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Jun 17

June 17, 2021

Mt 6:7-15 Prayers of petition were very important to the Jewish people. Jesus emphasizes the importance of the quality of prayer. Too many words are not necessary. God knows what is on the heart and asks that the requests of the person praying be made in confidence and trust. Jesus prays the Our Father, the example of a perfect prayer and...
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Jun 16

June 16, 2021

Mt 6:1-6, 16-18 Prayer, fasting and almsgiving were as much a part of the Jewish religious practices then as our Christian practices today. Do not undertake these practices to be seen and admired. They are to be done as a means of self-emptying and as a way of offering praise and thanksgiving to God and God alone. I pray to remain in you with my...
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Jun 15

June 15, 2021

Mt 5:43-48 The final antithesis of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew’s Gospel is no doubt the most demanding. Love must not be reserved only for friends and fellow citizens. Just as the sun rises and the rain falls by God’s design, so must love and care be offered to all people whether deserving or not. Your ways do not always make...
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Jun 14

June 14, 2021

Mt 5:38-42 Even minimal retaliation feeds the cycle of vengeance. Jesus tells his disciples to avoid falling into the attitudes and behaviors of their enemies but rather rise above the inclination to strike back. Turning the other cheek, giving your cloak, going the extra mile is far more effective then revenge in God’s eyes. It is not...
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Jun 13

June 13, 2021

Mk 4:26-34 The lesson in the first parable is that God alone is in control of the coming of the kingdom, just as God, the Creator controls the nature of the planted seeds. We must let God be God. Along with that comes the understanding that no matter how small a person’s faith or the numbers in a community of faith, the efforts put forth...
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Jun 12

June 12, 2021

Lk 2:41-51 We can only imagine the feelings of Mary and Joseph discovering that Jesus was not with the group. As relieved as they must have been to find him, they must have realized that His work, God’s work will take him from them again and again. We pray that all parents realize the impact their faith lives have on the faith of their...
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Jun 11

June 11, 2021

Jn 19:31-37 The hour of the Sabbath is near. It is not necessary to hasten Jesus’ death by breaking his legs. He is already dead. Instead the soldiers pierce his side and blood and water pour out. Through this physical sign of his humanity, God’s abundant love for his people is revealed. The blood and water that flowed from your side...
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Jun 10

June 10, 2021

Mt 5:20-26 Jesus’ teaching in this part of the sermon is more radical than that of the scribes. Though they might be seen as fulfilling the law, they do not really understand the depth and breadth of it. In the first of the six antitheses, Jesus tells his followers that they must set aside anger and any behavior that might potentially lead...
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Jun 9

June 9, 2021

Mt 5:17-19 Jesus tells the disciples and the crowd that he will not abolish the law of the Old Testament but he will not continue to treat it as a static document held over the people. At the heart of the law is the commandment to love and he will make sure that every word is understood as map and compass to right relationship with God and...
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Jun 8

June 8, 2021

Mt 5:13-16   Salt and light are the images Jesus uses to reflect the role of the disciples. Salt not only enhances, it preserves. They are to enhance and improve lives with the good news. The disciples are also commissioned to preserve the church from heresy and destruction. They are called to let the light of Christ shine through them....
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Jun 7

June 7, 2021

Mt 5:1-12 Jesus goes up the mountain like Moses before him. He sits and the crowd, including his disciples, gathers round. The Beatitudes are the “heart” of the commandments. It is a deeper level of understanding more than what to do or not do but how to be what God intends every person to be. I pray to be all that you have created...
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Jun 6

June 6, 2021

Mk 14:12-16, 22-26 Jesus has made his own preparations for the Last Supper and first Eucharistic meal. He sends the disciples out with instructions that will lead them to the proper place so that they can lay out the table for their meal. In their participation in the preparation Jesus is telling them that in going forward they must actively...
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Jun 5

June 5, 2021

Mk 12:38-44 The humility and fidelity of the widow stands in sharp contrast to the hypocrisy of the scribes. Their religiosity is superficial, intended to draw attention to themselves. The widow willingly gives all that she has, a clear sign of her absolute dependence on God. Her action is what it means to be “poor in spirit”. I pray...
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Jun 4

June 4, 2021

Mk 12:35-37 The scribes have been asking Jesus the difficult questions up to this point in the Gospel. Now, Jesus poses a question to them not to trick them but to bring them to the truth about his relationship with God. Jesus is a descendant of David, no doubt, but he is the Son of God. I praise you Lord God; for all that you have done...
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Jun 3

June 3, 2021

Mk 12:28-34 Jesus responds to the scribe in a way like that of a Jewish Scripture or Wisdom teacher of that time. In turn, the scribe uses the same method as Jesus, weaving parts of Hebrew Scripture together highlighting the meaning of the answer. The two are in agreement. Jesus, your intent was never to abolish the law and the prophets. You...
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Jun 2

June 2, 2021

Mk 12:18-27 The intent of the Jewish leaders is to trap Jesus with their question much like the question posed to him in yesterday’s Gospel about paying taxes to the emperor. Without hesitation, Jesus puts it right back on them. His wisdom shines a light on their ignorance of God’s law and eternal life. They are “greatly...
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Jun 1

June 1, 2021

Mk 12:13-17 For the first few days of June the reading from the Old Testament is taken from the Book of Tobit. Though listed with the historical books, it is a beautiful religious story about the relationship between God and God’s people. God answers the prayers of his people in the most unexpected ways. I am thankful for the stories, old...
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Daily Reading and Prayer

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A spiritual reflection on the daily readings that help cultivate a pattern of daily prayer and a deepening relationship with God

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