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July 31, 2023: Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Gospel: Matthew 13:44-52

Jesus said to his disciples: “The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in a field, which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls. When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells all that he has and buys it. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net thrown into the sea, which collect fish of every kind. When it is full they haul it ashore and sit down to put what is good into buckets. What is bad they throw away. Thus it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.

“Do you understand all these things?” They answered, “Yes.” And he replied, “Then every scribe who has been instructed in the kingdom of heaven is like the head of the household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.”


In today’s Gospel, Jesus is talking to his disciples about the kindom. But the parable is also about searching and finding, and what treasure will be waiting for the seeker. I find it interesting to look below the surface of parables to see if there is something hidden beneath the simple words.

In the somewhat obscure last verse, Jesus reminds us that both the old and the new are worth looking at; each holds a key to the kindom. We need to be careful seekers when we look for what is of “great price” for us. And we need to discern what we are willing to give up in order to attain the kindom.


How hard am I looking and for what? Am I content in my current relationship with the Creator? To what can I liken the kindom of God in the here and now?

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Nancy Olson

Nancy Olson

A native of Champaign, Ill., Nancy Olson became a Providence Associate with the Sisters of Providence in 2018.

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  1. Avatar Linda Doyle on July 29, 2023 at 10:34 pm

    You made me think today about what am I doing to seek god’s kingdom ? How can I show mercy and love to a stranger or feed the poor or have an open heart of forgiveness or welcome the members of God’s family who come to our land to escape oppression , poverty persecution , violence . Peace / linda

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