Embracing the Peripheries
Malvern Minute


November 6, 2017 – Monday of the Thirty-First  Week of Ordinary Time

If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples, and you will know the truth, says the Lord. Alleluia, alleluia!


Mark J. Poletunow, Malvern President (mpoletunow@malvernretreat.com)


Click for: Readings for the day (From the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops)


A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (14:12-14)


On a sabbath Jesus went to dine
at the home of one of the leading Pharisees.
He said to the host who invited him,
“When you hold a lunch or a dinner,
do not invite your friends or your brothers or sisters
or your relatives or your wealthy neighbors,
in case they may invite you back and you have repayment.
Rather, when you hold a banquet,
invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; 
blessed indeed will you be because of their inability to repay you.

For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”


Reflect: When you hold a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; blessed indeed will you be because of their inability to repay you. Charity and kindness is inspired by God; but we can fall into the temptation of wanting to be noticed or rewarded for what we do. The Gospel passage today helps us to put our heart and mind in-synch with the mind and heart of God. As Saint Paul reminds us in his Letter to the Romans (Chapter 11: 29-36), today’s first reading: “Oh, the depth of the riches and the wisdom and knowledge of God! How inscrutable are his judgments and how unsearchable his ways!” We can’t begin to imagine how God works and thinks; we can’t comprehend the depth of his love and mercy. Nonetheless, we can draw close to him and begin to let his heart form our own. Our stiffness of heart can be made malleable through prayer, silence and time before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. Living as a missionary disciple is not about counting the cost or anticipating an earthly reward or recognition.  It is, however, very much about showing the world what the heart of Christ looks like. May he increase as we decrease. May we rejoice in showing the world God’s lavish goodness – especially for those who are most in need!


Questions: What are my motivations in reaching out to others? Am I willing to make a preferential option for the poor and marginalized? How might Jesus be calling me to reach out to those who are pushed to the peripheries of life?


Pray: Loving God, help me to let your heart take over my life. Lead my desires, my dreams, my actions, and all my choices – to honor you and to build up your Kingdom on earth.  I pray this in the powerful and perfect name of Jesus. Amen.


You will show me the path of life, the fullness of joy in your presence, O Lord.



Consider joining the Men and Women of Malvern by deepening your personal relationship with Jesus and your commitment as a disciple through a weekend retreat.  See our website for details:  MalvernRetreat.com


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