Daily Mass Readings for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
- First Reading – Sirach 27:30—28:7: “Forgive your neighbor’s injustice; then when you pray, your own sins will be forgiven.”
- Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 103: “The Lord is kind and merciful, slow to anger, and rich in compassion.”
- Second Reading – Romans 14:7-9: “None of us lives for oneself, and no one dies for oneself. For if we live, we live for the Lord, and if we die, we die for the Lord; so then, whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.”
- Gospel – Matthew 18:21-35: “Lord, if my brother sins against me, how often must I forgive? As many as seven times?”
Themes for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
The readings for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time for Year A focus on mercy and forgiveness. In the first reading we are told we must forgive each other for “wrath and anger are hateful things”. The psalm reminds us that God shows us mercy. The second reading tells us to live for Christ instead of ourselves. And in the gospel Jesus tells parables about mercy and tells Peter that we must forgive “seventy times seven” times.
- Spiritual Works of Mercy
- Forgiving others
- The work of forgiveness and letting go
Resources for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
Jesus commanded us to love. The Catholic Church teaches that respecting life is more than just not hurting other people. We must actively work for peace and justice, even for those we are in conflict with.
The Spiritual Works of Mercy are a way for us to accompany and encourage each other on our faith journey. The Spiritual Works of Mercy are acts of charity through which we show our love for each other by .
Most Catholic youth are familiar with the rosary, but the Chaplet of Divine Mercy is less well known. The Divine Mercy Chaplet is a devotion which reminds us that God is merciful and that we too must show mercy.
This prayer is based on Psalm 103, which is the responsorial psalm for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time.
The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant might be difficult for youth to understand. While slavery and servitude was common in the time of Jesus, the imagery will be unfamiliar to the youth of today. This retelling prepares youth to understand the message of this gospel. Reflection questions are also provided.
Homilies and Reflections for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
Jeff Cavins discusses one of the most difficult things Christians are called to do.
From Bishop Robert Barron. “Our first reading—taken from the twenty-seventh and twenty-eighth chapters of the marvelous book of Sirach, called in older Bibles the book of Ecclesiasticus—has to do with anger, vengeance, and forgiveness, themes that will figure prominently in the preaching of Jesus.”
From Fr. Richard Rohr of the Center for Action and Contemplation. If you have never needed mercy, then you don’t know how to give it. Forgive us our trespasses AS we have forgiven those who trespass against us.
From Scott Hahn. “Mercy and forgiveness should be at the heart of the Christian life. So we forgive each other from the heart, overlook each other’s faults, and await the crown of His kindness and compassion.” Continue reading.
From Loyola Press. “In today’s reading Peter asks Jesus how many times one ought to extend forgiveness to another. Peter proposes a reasonable number of times, perhaps seven. Jesus replies by extending Peter’s proposal by an enormous amount; not just seven times should one forgive, but 77 times.” Continue reading.
More Thoughts for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
The parable of the Unforgiving Servant can be difficult with its image on slavery and debt bondage. (See this modern day version for youth.) But these were typical practices in the time of Jesus. But we can focus on the message of forgiving others.
The king has compassion for the man who begs for mercy. But the servant does not pass that mercy on to others. The other servants know this man’s debt has been forgiven and yet they see him being unduly harsh with others in the household. This doesn’t sit well with them, so they report him to the king. The king then has him tortured. This is also a difficult image.
For modern day readers, it is better to look at the overall message of the parable instead of getting bogged down in the details and what they might mean. God has forgiven our transgressions. We then, in turn, must forgive others.
Reflection Questions for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
- Is there someone in my life whom I find difficult to forgive?
- Who have I hurt over the years? Do I need to ask someone for forgiveness.
- How do I feel after I have been forgiven, either by God or by another person?
Quotes and Social Media Graphics for the 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
Wrath and anger are hateful things, yet the sinner hugs them tight. Forgive your neighbor’s injustice. Then when you pray, your own sins will be forgiven.
Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.