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Gospel reflection

October 6, 2019: Twenty-seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

Saint Mother Theodore Guerin and her writing desk with artifacts from her life displayed in the Shrine of the Saint Mother Theodore Guerin at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana.

Reading: Luke 17:5-10

The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.”
The Lord replied, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.

“Who among you would say to your servant who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field, ‘Come here immediately and take your place at table’?
Would he not rather say to him, ‘Prepare something for me to eat. Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink. You may eat and drink when I am finished’?
Is he grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded? So should it be with you.

“When you have done all you have been commanded, say, “We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do.’”


Faith! Faith! Faith! Today’s readings — all three of them — highlight the importance of faith and trust in God. The first two readings seem to prepare us for the gospel.

The prophet Habakkuk sees the violence in the world and prays for God to intervene. God, in turn, asks for him to be patient, be a person of integrity and have faith that the vision of God will be fulfilled.

Paul also encourages us to have trust and live in the power, love and strength of God in the midst of hardship.

The Gospel, then, gives us clues as to how to live in this faith.  We are to do the daily work that is a part of our life and be ever-ready to listen and follow the leading of Christ.  We must recognize that it is God who will increase our faith.  What is required of us is perseverance, openness, and obedience. 


We too see violence and need in our world. To respond to this Sunday’s readings, let us resolve to attend well to the events that occur in our lives and ask, How are we being challenged to step out in obedience and in faith!

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Marilyn Webb

Marilyn Webb is a Providence Associate. She graduated from a Sisters of Providence high school in Indianapolis and from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College. She is retired and enjoys volunteering. Marilyn frequently volunteers as a docent at the Shrine of Saint Mother Theodore Guerin. She also is involved in teaching Centering Prayer and in serving in leadership for Contemplative Outreach, Ltd. and the Association of Contemplative Sisters.

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