Catholic Contemplative Affiliation

Sunday Readings


The Meditation


Twenty-Eighth  Sunday in Ordinary Time 

October 13, 2019
Readings: 2nd Kings 5.14-17; 2nd Timothy 2.8-13; Luke 17. 11-19
The Gospel Reading: the Fundamental Stance Before God: Thanksgiving
We could appropriately recite the following verse from today’s Gospel at the conclusion of a session of silent prayer:
Then one of the ten lepers, seeing that he had been made clean, returned, praising God with a loud voice.  And falling on his face before Jesus, he gave thanks.
At the end of prayer there is nothing more appropriate than to thank God for the gift of prayer in this prayer of profound thanks and abandonment.  In prayer the most profound attitude is thanksgiving for sharing in the divine life of the Holy Trinity. There is nothing more to say or to intend than to thank God for the gift of life in Christ and in the Holy Spirit.
We thank the Father in Christ in the name of all humanity; we exercise our baptismal vocation as priests.
For What Are We Grateful
Seeing that he had been made clean. 
First, we must see the reality of God’s merciful love that in his grace we are made righteous, re-born in grace as children of God. 
There is a stark and bold passage about our sinfulness and the cleansing from that former state of separation from God’s Kingdom in 1st Corinthians 6. 9-11:
“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God?  Do not be deceived neither the immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God.   And such were some of you.  But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.” (Read Romans 3:21-26).
The Act of Thanks: A Return Back into God in Himself
We must return; we must turn back into God—Returned, praising God.
We must fall in adoration before Jesus, the Son of God.  Jesus is the fullness of God among us; he is our Savior.  It is his personal love and power that give us this eternal life—And falling on his face before Jesus, he gave thanks.
We do Eucharist.  We give thanks.  There is nothing more essential than this abandonment in thanks.  We surrender to the essential inclination of our ground in God toward God in God.
The First Reading: Self-Reliance Is  An Obstacle to God’s Work
In the First Reading, Naaman, once he had overcome his sense of self-reliance that was an obstacle to the flow of grace.  He then embraced the attitude of obedience; he plunged into the river Jordan.  In this action he was cured. 
Like the leper in the Gospel Reading he confesses his thanks and reliance on God as redeemer.
 Now I know that there is no God in all the earth, except in Israel.  Please accept a gift from your servant.
Thanksgiving in the Spirit is the central prayer of the Church.  It is the continual Eucharist.  (Eucharist which is from the Greek word, means to give thanks.)
The Second Reading: Can We Deny God?
In the Second Reading we read of St. Paul’s unfailing zeal to proclaim the Gospel of salvation.  He warns us about denying Jesus as a savior.  But if we deny him, he will deny us.  If we are unfaithful, he will still remain faithful, for he cannot deny himself.
The First Reading and the Gospel give us living exemplars of those who embrace their salvation in the deepest internal attitude of thanksgiving.  The Second Reading teaches us of the pitfalls of any falling away from our faith and commitment.
God’s holiness is His fullness of being and life: He cannot deny himself.  Our holiness is the full acceptance of who we are in God, as created and redeemed.  Thanksgiving is an act of full acceptance of who we are in Christ.
Mary: The Exemplar of Right Attitude in Prayer
Mary is the model of this attitude in prayer.  “My soul magnifies the Lord .”  The Holy Eucharist is all at once our communal, public embrace of Christ’s salvation and the profound act of thanksgiving that is sacrifice and communion.  The Eucharist, as the Church teaches, is the source and summit of our life in God through Christ.

William Fredrickson, Obl. Secular OSB; D.Min.


For questions, comments or other communication, please contact:
William Frederickson