Word for the Weekend: JULY 17

Martha and Mary by Maud Sumner

This coming Sunday offers a real contrast to the previous week's gospel of the Good Samaritan.

July 17 will be the 16th Sunday in Ordinary Time and here Jesus spotlights the one who does little more than sit at his feet and listen to him - while her sister is busy about the work of hospitality in the home where Jesus is visiting - the home of Martha and Mary, his friends in Bethany.

The image above offers a striking contemporary interpretation of the story of Martha and Mary.  You'll need to study the painting a bit to find where Jesus is...

To prepare us to hear Luke's account of Jesus' visit to the sisters of Lazarus, the lectionary gives us another account of hospitality, this one found in the Book of Genesis where Abraham and Sarah entertain strangers who have a hidden identity.  These strangers also make a prediction to this elderly couple which is laughable - but which will come true.  Want to read "the rest of the story?" You'll find this Sunday's scriptures and commentary on them here and if you've got children in tow on your way to pray this weekend, look here for hints to help them prepare to hear the Word.

St. Paul will step in between the first lesson and the gospel with a "word from our sponsor..."  In his letter to the Colossians, Paul is writing from prison and revealing what has been hidden "from ages and generations past..."


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