Lectio Divina for Sunday’s Gospel: Sept 29

September 29th, 2019 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time . Luke 16:19-31 The Parable of Lazarus and the Rich Man

Meaningful Quote: “There’s no more central theme in the Bible than the immorality of inequality. Jesus speaks more about the gap between rich and poor than he does about heaven and hell.”–Jim Wallis

Commentary: “A major theme in the Gospel of Luke is the importance of the care of the poor in the life of discipleship. In the parable found in today’s Gospel, Jesus contrasts the life of a rich man and the poor man, Lazarus, who lives in the shadow of the rich man and his wealth. Both die. Lazarus finds himself in heaven; the rich man in the netherworld. The rich man asks for assistance from Lazarus in his torment. But Abraham reminds the rich man of the good things he had in his life and describes the current situation as a reversal of fortunes. The rich man then asks that Lazarus be sent to warn his family, but this is denied with the reminder that Moses and the prophets have warned of judgment for those who neglect the care of the poor.   In the context of Luke’s Gospel, this parable, delivered in the presence of a crowd of listeners, is part of Jesus’ response to some Pharisees. These Pharisees are described in Luke’s Gospel as “loving money.” (Note: The Pharisees were followers of a sect of Judaism active before, during, and after Jesus’ lifetime. They taught an oral interpretation of the Law of Moses as the basis for popular Jewish piety. [holiness] They put less emphasis on Temple worship and more on applying the law to everyday life. Though they are often portrayed negatively in the Gospels, they shared many of Jesus’ and the early Church’s concerns about the law.) Jesus observed that the actions of some Pharisees betrayed misplaced priorities: they spoke one way, but acted in another. The story of the rich man and Lazarus demonstrates the importance of the care of the poor and is a reminder to those who would follow Jesus of the unimportance of wealth in the eyes of God.”  https://www.loyolapress.com/our-catholic-faith/liturgical-year/sunday-connection/26th-sunday-in-ordinary-time-c-sunday-connection


1.  Why is it important for disciples of Jesus to take care of the poor?

2.  Do you think having lots of money is sinful?  Why or why not?

3.  Why do you think that the poor man is named but not the rich man?

Words to the Song – Rich Man, Rich Man by Marty Robbins

Rich man, rich man got all the good land.  Ain’t nothin’ left but bad land for the poor man.

Rich man’s money, rich man’s school.  Did they make the poor man, rich man’s fool.

Rich man, rich man never have dirty hands, never hold a plow that’s turnin, his land.

Poor man holds it day by day.  Did they make the poor man, rich man’s slave.

I work the field come rain or shine – what else can I do.  I have nothing nor has mine.  Are we rich man’s fools.

Poor man, poor man always be a poor man.  Sit at the end of day then I’m a tired man.

Rich man’s money, rich man’s school.  Did they make the poor man, rich man’s fool.

Rich man worried ‘bout all the money spent.  Worried ‘bout taxes, he owes the government then on payday poor man shines they can’t tax just one thin dime.

God loves both of us rich and poor alike.  Loves us both the same, equal within his sight.  Has no favourites, this I know for the good book tells me so.

Wealth can’t buy a home on high not all the worldly gold.  Faith, on bended knees, can buy a home in saviour’s soul.

Rich and poor the same, no good without the flame.  I mean the flame of love, sent down from God above.  If our faith in Him we lose rich or poor, we’re both a fool.


Visio Divina

Visio Divina uses sacred art instead of scripture for prayer. Follow these steps but adapt them according to your audience.

  1. Contemplate this image by Jacopo Bassano titled Lazarus and the Rich Man. It is found at the Cleveland Museum of Art.
  2. Read the Gospel: Luke 16:19-31

3.  How does the painting echo the Gospel?

4. Is this painting effective in showing the contrast between Lazarus and the Rich Man?

5. Bassano has added a third main figure, the boy. What do you think he is thinking?

6. If you were painting this scene in a contemporary setting what features would you include?  or

7. Given the ecological crisis, what symbols would you include in a visual representation of the message of this parable?

8. How has this exercise helped you grow spiritually?

Other images of this passage: https://paintingvalley.com/lazarus-and-the-rich-man-painting

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