Daily Reading and Prayer

April 2018

Apr 21

April 21, 2018

John 6:60-69 At the conclusion of the discourse, the disciples admit that they find Jesus’ words difficult to understand and his directives difficult to follow. Some choose to walk away. The twelve remain, and Peter, their spokesperson, states bluntly that knowing him, journeying with him, leaves them no choice but to remain with him....
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Apr 20

April 20, 2018

John 6:52-59 These passages in the discourse begin with the Jews quarreling with one another about Jesus offering his physical flesh. He responds by telling them that unless they eat his flesh and drink his blood they will not have life within them. They are blinded to the spiritual reality of his words. I will admit that is nearly impossible to...
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Apr 19

April 19, 2018

John 6:44-51 The Eucharistic theme is at the heart of this gospel, and “believe” is the operative verb. Jesus must be consciously received as the bread from heaven, God’s revelation. Eating his flesh and drinking his blood provides ongoing nourishment for the believer. This belief is not optional; it is essential. Eating and...
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Apr 18

April 18, 2018

John 6:35-40 Jesus is the bread of life. The food and drink analogy in John’s gospel shows that he is the only one necessary to gain eternal life. It is God’s will that everyone believe. The crowd’s initial misunderstanding, in reality unbelief, is proof that just because they see the truth does not mean they believe. They see...
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Apr 17

April 17, 2018

John 6:30-35 The crowd boldly asks Jesus for signs. What else can he do for them? Clearly their enthusiasm about the multiplication has faded. They cite what Moses did for the people in the desert. Jesus responds by saying that God was responsible for that miracle, not Moses. He reminds them again that the bread of God is not meant to satisfy...
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Apr 16

April 16, 2018

John 6:22-29 After the disciples witnessed Jesus walking on the water, they returned to shore.  Meanwhile, the crowds who had been fed searched for Jesus. When they found him they asked how he had gotten to Capernaum. Rather than satisfying their curiosity, Jesus redirected their attention to the spiritual nature of his mission. He told...
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Apr 15

April 15, 2018

Luke 24:35-48   The disciples had been told by witnesses who had seen and talked with Jesus that he had risen. Yet they still were not open to this amazing possibility, and his sudden appearance startled them. He showed them his wounds. He asked them for something to eat. He reminded them of all that was written and all he had told them. He...
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Apr 14

April 14, 2018

John 6:16-21 In v. 15, Jesus has withdrawn by himself to the mountain. The disciples take their boat out to sea. They head back to shore and are caught unexpectedly in turbulent waters. Jesus appears, walking toward them on the water. His words imply both divine presence and desire to quell their fear. I place my trust in you. Even though I have...
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Apr 13

April 13, 2018

John 6:1-15 The theme of the sixth chapter of John’s gospel is centered on Jesus as the Bread of Life. It begins with the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves. This miracle has Eucharistic overtones and is the only miracle recounted in all four of the gospels. I do not ever have to feel hungry if only I avail myself of your word and...
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Apr 12

April 12, 2018

John 3:31-36 The final passages of chapter three in John’s gospel are reflections on the two previous scenes; Jesus’ encounter with Nicodemus and John the Baptist’s final witness. John, the author, likens belief and unbelief to light and darkness. To believe in Jesus, as the one sent from the Father above, is to believe in the...
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Apr 11

April 11, 2018

John 3:16-21 John concludes Jesus’ discourse with the heart of his message about the Father. God is love, and that love is the dynamic that will bring about salvation. The absolute truth is that God loves creation so much that he sent his son, Jesus, to save humankind from itself. I pray to be a visible sign of God’s love, especially...
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Apr 10

April 10, 2018

John 3:7B-15 Jesus questions Nicodemus’s inability to grasp what he is saying. How it is possible that a Pharisee, a teacher of the Jewish people, does not understand? For years I have prayed, studied, reflected, discussed with others, and sought answers from those wiser than I. Are you amazed when I don’t understand? Perhaps, but...
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Apr 9

April 9, 2018

Luke 1:26-38 Mary is “full of grace” as God willed her to be because of the role she plays in salvation. She is taken aback by the angel’s announcement yet humbly accepts God’s invitation. From the very beginning, Mary is the model disciple. Mary, Holy Mother, your humble and trusting “yes” to God has shown me...
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Apr 8

April 8, 2018

John 20:19-31 John’s version of the appearance of Jesus to the disciple parallels the other gospels, but two things stand out. In verses 21 and 22 Jesus breathes the Spirit on this community and sends them out in the same way he is sent out by the Father. His mission is now their mission with all that it entails. John gives Thomas a very...
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Apr 7

April 7, 2018

Mark 16:9-15 Mark weaves Jesus’ three appearances to his disciples into one. Mary and the two disciples know him and run to tell the others, but they do not believe. Jesus appears to the disciples directly and admonishes them for their unbelief. Once said, he commissions them to go out and proclaim the good news. I see a very human...
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Apr 6

April 6, 2018

John 21:1-14 Seven are present for Jesus’ third appearance. John, the beloved disciple, is the only one to recognize him. They fish without him and catch nothing, but once he is present, their catch is plentiful. He serves them a meal. Without saying a word, he teaches them that to do his work, they must depend on him completely and must...
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Apr 5

April 5, 2018

Luke 24:35-48 In this continuation of yesterday’s Gospel, the two disciples return to Jerusalem to recount what had taken place. Suddenly Jesus is standing in the midst of all of the disciples. He knows that they are startled so he offers them a greeting of peace. They still do not understand so he shows them his hands and feet. He...
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Apr 4

April 4, 2018

Luke 24:13-35 The two disciples cannot believe that this fellow traveler is unaware of all that took place in Jerusalem. Jesus responds to their questioning by proclaiming and interpreting the scriptures that identify him, in his passion and death, as the fulfillment of the prophets. They are struck by something and invite him to stay with him....
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Apr 3

April 3, 2018

John 20:11-18 Mary weeps at the tomb. The loss of Jesus to death is compounded by the disappearance of his body. Her response to their question makes clear that there are angels before her. She does not recognize Jesus, but then he says her name, and she knows. He cannot stay, nor can she. She returns to the disciples to proclaim the good news....
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Apr 2

April 2, 2018

Matthew 28:8-15 The women in Matthew’s resurrection narrative respond to the empty tomb and the angel’s explanation with mixed emotions. They encounter Jesus on the way to tell the disciples, and their joy far surpasses their fear. Aware of the resurrection stories, Jesus’ adversaries had posted guards at the tomb. Though...
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Apr 1

April 1, 2018

John 20:1-9 Mary Magdalene arrives at the tomb and sees that the stone has been rolled away. She thinks this means that Jesus’ body has been taken. She runs to tell Peter and the beloved disciple about her discovery. They too arrive at the tomb to find the burial cloths but no body. Like Mary, Peter does not understand. It is the other...
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Daily Reading and Prayer

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A spiritual reflection on the daily readings that help cultivate a pattern of daily prayer and a deepening relationship with God