We began offering Lessons and Questions in Lent when our seasonal focus was on Worship. They were well received, so we’re continuing the practice and we hope you will find them a useful resource as you prepare to receive the readings in church each week.
Lessons & Questions for Easter VII, Sunday, June 2, 2019
In these strange and heroic series of events, there is one common thread—the faith of Paul and Silas. They were able to keep their faith and pray and sing hymns even after being attacked by the mob and beaten by the authorities. Their witness to Jesus enabled them to have influence on those incarcerated with them and their jailer. This weekend, men from our parish will be at Baker Correctional Institution taking part in a Kairos renewal weekend (like Cursillo and Discovery). Their witness will help people who have been incarcerated come to faith—or grow in faith—in Jesus. Pray for them as they go and return and for those who hear their witness and stay behind. Pray that they all may grow in faith even in the difficult circumstances in their lives.
This psalm rejoices in a view of God’s judgment that states that God punishes the wicked. Our life experience tells us that is not always the case—sometimes the wicked are doing just fine! And frankly we hope that God will be merciful toward us when we fall short and are wicked. How do you wrestle with these different views of God’s judgment and God’s mercy? How does Jesus help to resolve these complexities for us and our faith?
The end of this strange book includes a two-way invitation—for the Lord Jesus to come again for the consummation of all things at the end of time; and for us to come for what we need from God for our spiritual thirst. As we look forward to that final day, how can we live our daily lives with that two-way invitation between us and Jesus? How do we invite the presence of Jesus into our lives? How do we receive what we need from God for our healing?
In this Gospel passage, we get to listen in on Jesus’ prayer to the Father for his followers– those back then, throughout history, and even for believers today. What are the issues that seem to preoccupy Jesus in his prayer? Do Jesus’ concerns concern us in what we pray for in our lives? Three things seem to be central in Jesus’ prayer—God’s love for us that is to be shared; Christian unity with God and among us all in our diversity (and even orneriness); and God sharing God’s glory with all of us. Jesus’ prayer seems beyond us. How can we join our prayers with his? How might those prayers change how we live?