33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
Sunday, November 19, 2023
Mass Readings for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
- First Reading – Proverbs 31:10-13, 19-20, 30-31: “She reaches out her hands to the poor, and extends her arms to the needy.”
- Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 128: “Blessed are those who fear the Lord.”
- Second Reading – 1 Thessalonians 5:1-6: “But you, brothers and sisters, are not in darkness, for that day to overtake you like a thief. For all of you are children of the light and children of the day. We are not of the night or of darkness.”
- Gospel – Matthew 25:14-30: “Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.”
Themes for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
The readings for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A are a call to do the work of the Kingdom of God with the gifts we have been given. The first reading sings the praises of the worthy wife who uses her talents to labor for good. The psalm tells us that those who follow the Lord are blessed. The second reading reminds us that we are children of light and goodness. And in the gospel Jesus tells the parable of the talents and praises the servants who used their resources wisely.
- Appreciating our gifts
See the Homilies and Reflections section and the More Thoughts section for further expansion on these readings and some reflection questions for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A.
Resources for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
Parable of the Talents – Discussion and Reflection Questions
This reflection will help youth consider how they use their gifts and talents to grow the Kingdom of God.
Friendship Bracelets (Affirmation Activity)
Making friendship bracelets can be both a craft and an affirmation activity. Let youth hear how other people see their many gifts.
What Is My Worth?
How is my worth related to my social connections? Should I count my current possessions in my worth? Does my earnings potential play a part in the calculation? If these are the sort of questions you are asking, you are completely heading in the wrong direction.
A Prayer for a Blessed Home – Based on Psalm 128
This prayer is based on Psalm 128, which is the Responsorial Psalm for this Sunday. It asks for blessings on our home and family as we follow the ways of the Lord.
Prayer to Be My True Self
This is a prayer inspired by Psalm 139. Use it for your youth ministry meeting or youth group activity focused on authenticity and being your true self. This is a good lesson for teens who are feeling overwhelmed by the need to be popular.
Video Clips and Music about Authenticity and Being Yourself
This is a small collection of video clips and music about authenticity and being your true self. Use these with your youth ministry or youth group meeting.
Homilies and Reflections for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
What Are You Doing With What God Has Given You?
Jeff Cavins reflects on Jesus’ parable of the talents found in this Sunday’s Gospel.
How to Be a Steward
Which is better, being an owner or a steward? Fr. Mike Schmitz reminds us of the Parable of the Talents as he points out how seeing ourselves as an owner is not as great as it seems. When we see ourselves as the owner of something, we hold onto it more closely for fear of losing it. When that thing is taken from us, we may become resentful.
Parable of the Talents
From Bishop Robert Barron. Your being increases in the measure that you give it away. That’s the law of the gift, and it can be found from end to end of the Bible. One application of this law has to do with faith itself. Your faith will grow only in the measure that you give it away, sharing it with others.
From Scott Hahn. The day of the Lord is coming, Paul warns in today’s Epistle. What matters isn’t the time or the season, but what the Lord finds us doing with the new life, the graces He has given to us.
A Spirituality of Work
Also from Bishop Barron. Our first reading is taken this weekend from the last chapter of the marvelous book of Proverbs. After ruminating for many pages on different aspects of the wise life, the author concludes with a hymn of praise to a smart, industrious, dedicated, and pious wife. Our work makes us collaborators with God, who gives us the privilege of participating in his good governance of the universe.
More Thoughts for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
A Capable Woman
The woman described in today’s first reading is very capable. She is industrious and uses her talents to support her family and for the good of her community. Interestingly, this poem from Proverbs 31 is often sung during a traditional Jewish Friday night Shabbat meal, to give honor to the matriarch of the family.
In some translations, she is called a “woman of power” or a “woman of valor” rather than a “worthy wife”. These are more literal translations of “eshet chayil”.
Using Our Gifts
The parable of the talents clearly asks us to consider what we are doing with the many gifts which God has given us. Our gifts are meant to grow the Kingdom of God, not to sit unused. At the end of our days, we should be ready to explain how we have been good stewards of the potential which God has bestowed upon us.
Reflection Questions for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
- Do I value the contributions of women?
- Who are the women of power in my life?
- How am I using my talents to build the Kingdom of God?
Quotes and Social Media Graphics for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
For all of you are children of the light and children of the day. We are not of the night or of darkness.1 Thessalonians 5:5
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