Daily Readings & Inspiration Daily

Wednesday of the Seventh Week of Easter

Reading 1 Acts 20:28-38

At Miletus, Paul spoke to the presbyters of the Church of Ephesus:
“Keep watch over yourselves and over the whole flock
of which the Holy Spirit has appointed you overseers,
in which you tend the Church of God
that he acquired with his own Blood.
I know that after my departure savage wolves will come among you,
and they will not spare the flock.
And from your own group, men will come forward perverting the truth
to draw the disciples away after them.
So be vigilant and remember that for three years, night and day,
I unceasingly admonished each of you with tears.
And now I commend you to God
and to that gracious word of his that can build you up
and give you the inheritance among all who are consecrated.
I have never wanted anyone’s silver or gold or clothing.
You know well that these very hands
have served my needs and my companions.
In every way I have shown you that by hard work of that sort
we must help the weak,
and keep in mind the words of the Lord Jesus who himself said,
‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

When he had finished speaking
he knelt down and prayed with them all.
They were all weeping loudly
as they threw their arms around Paul and kissed him,
for they were deeply distressed that he had said
that they would never see his face again.
Then they escorted him to the ship.

Responsorial Psalm 68:29-30, 33-35a, 35bc-36ab

R.    (33a)  Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth.
R.    Alleluia.
Show forth, O God, your power,
the power, O God, with which you took our part;
For your temple in Jerusalem
let the kings bring you gifts.
R.    Sing to God, O Kingdoms of the earth.
R.    Alleluia.
You kingdoms of the earth, sing to God,
chant praise to the Lord
who rides on the heights of the ancient heavens.
Behold, his voice resounds, the voice of power:
“Confess the power of God!”
R.    Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth.
R.    Alleluia.
Over Israel is his majesty;
his power is in the skies.
Awesome in his sanctuary is God, the God of Israel;
he gives power and strength to his people.
R.    Sing to God, O kingdoms of the earth.
R.    Alleluia.

Alleluia Jn 17:17b, 17a

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Your word, O Lord, is truth;
consecrate us in the truth.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Jn 17:11b-19

Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed, saying:
“Holy Father, keep them in your name
that you have given me,
so that they may be one just as we are one.
When I was with them I protected them in your name that you gave me,
and I guarded them, and none of them was lost
except the son of destruction,
in order that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
But now I am coming to you.
I speak this in the world
so that they may share my joy completely.
I gave them your word, and the world hated them,
because they do not belong to the world
any more than I belong to the world.
I do not ask that you take them out of the world
but that you keep them from the Evil One.
They do not belong to the world
any more than I belong to the world.
Consecrate them in the truth.
Your word is truth.
As you sent me into the world,
so I sent them into the world.
And I consecrate myself for them,
so that they also may be consecrated in truth.”



For the readings of the Optional Memorial of Saint Augustine of Canterbury, please go here.

– – –
Lectionary for Mass for Use in the Dioceses of the United States, second typical edition, Copyright © 2001, 1998, 1997, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine; Psalm refrain © 1968, 1981, 1997, International Committee on English in the Liturgy, Inc. All rights reserved. Neither this work nor any part of it may be reproduced, distributed, performed or displayed in any medium, including electronic or digital, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

To Trust, To Pray

In preparing for this blog post, I was struck by many things in both the first reading and the Gospel – so much so that I could probably write two different blogs for today – but ultimately felt drawn to comment on the Gospel, “the Prayer of Jesus.”

The entire 17th chapter of John’s Gospel, from which today’s Gospel is taken, is an intercessory prayer spoken by Jesus directly to the Father. Although not speaking to the disciples, He is interceding for them and for those disciples still to come (you and me).

When Jesus prays, something big is about to happen. In Matthew 14:23, Jesus goes up on a mountain to pray, and then what follows? He walks on water. In Luke 6:12, He again goes up a mountain again to pray overnight, and, when day breaks, He chooses His 12 apostles. In the same spirit, Jesus offers this prayer in today’s Gospel and then is arrested and on His way to the cross. When Jesus prays, something big is about to happen.

Why don’t we have that same faith, that same confidence, when it comes to our prayer? I’m not talking about saying the Our Father and then, boom, being able to walk on water but, rather, the act of bringing Him our needs and then trusting that something big will happen in our own lives. This trust is three-fold, I believe.

1. We have to trust that God truly cares about us and loves us. The misconception is that if God doesn’t love us or if He is a vengeful and vindictive God who is hurt by the humanity that betrayed Him, then He won’t even listen to our prayers. Accepting the truth of God’s unending love and mercy deep in our own hearts is key to being able to surrender our wishes, desires, and intentions to Him in prayer.

2. We have to trust in the power of our prayer. Our prayer is powerful because our God is powerful. Nothing is ever too big to ask and God never ignores the smallest of our requests either. All we have to do is bring our needs before Him and He will take care of the rest.

3. We have to trust that our prayers will be heard and answered. What is the point of praying if we believe either that God doesn’t hear us or that He won’t answer our prayers? Or maybe we are afraid of God’s answer not being the answer that we want? In that case…

4. (Bonus one) We have to trust that God’s plan is better than our own, that He will always work for our good. God will answer our prayers in His way. Sometimes His way lines up with our way but that is not often the case. There is always good in His answer because He loves us and desires our good.

Looking at this “Prayer of Jesus,” Jesus knows and trusts His Father’s love, trusts in the power of prayer, trusts that the Father heard what He asked and will answer and always, always trusts in the Father’s plan. Here in Jesus, we have a beautiful model for our own prayer. May we continue to trust in the Lord, placing our needs before Him.

Contact the author

Erin is a Cleveland native and graduate of the Franciscan University of Steubenville. Following graduation, she began volunteering in youth ministry at her home parish of Holy Family Church. Her first “big girl” job was in collegiate sports information where, after a busy two years in the profession on top of serving the youth, she took a leap of faith and followed the Lord’s call to full-time youth ministry at St. Peter Church. She still hopes to use her communication arts degree as a freelance writer and statistician, though. You can catch her on the Clarence & Peter Podcast on YouTube as well as follow her on Twitter @erinmadden2016.

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Dear Blessed Sacrament Parish Community,

Our church will be open for public Masses beginning the weekend of May 30/31, the feast of Pentecost. We are still in the midst of a pandemic, so Mass will look and feel different than the last time we gathered in March. Click here for the Mass guidelines Blessed Sacrament.