Thirty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time: Luke 19:1-10


“Zacchaeus and Jesus” Quick sketch: Ronald Raab, CSC

(Text: This weekend’s parish bulletin)

Dear Seekers of the Christ,

Luke’s Gospel (19:1-10) today tells the story of Zacchaeus, who climbed a sycamore tree to see Jesus. Zacchaeus was not only short in stature, but also short in respect among the people in his community because he was a tax collector. However, God had planted within his heart this great desire to see Jesus. He wished to lay his eyes on the One who could forgive him, heal him and offer him a new place within his community.

Jesus noticed Zacchaeus and wanted to forgive him. He sought Zacchaeus out by inviting himself to Zacchaeus’ house. Of course, the people griped about this. They were taken aback that Jesus would eat with a sinner.

This text invites us to let go of our judgments and our misconceptions. So often we still think that faith and the Church are for the rich, the well mannered, the educated and the sinless. In fact, Jesus comes to us just as we are: broken, confused, anxious, ill adjusted, and worried. Even after all of these generations, we still cannot believe that Jesus seeks after us, just as we are.

Zacchaeus went to great heights to find Jesus. The question that we face is: “To what heights are we willing to go to see Jesus?” I invite you to consider this in your prayer this week. There are very few of you who will read this question in this bulletin. However, those of you who do, already have the desire to find Jesus by exploring your own mind and heart to discover how you relate to Jesus Christ. Explore, run, climb, sit in silence, read, shout, go to confession or do something to find your heart’s desire this week. Jesus is waiting for you and wants to go to your house to find you. His love is waiting for you right where you are.

This week the Church celebrates the great feast of All Saints on November 1. This is a holy day for us. It is a time to reflect on the role models of our faith and how we live the message of Jesus’ passion, death and resurrection. Mass times: October 31– OLPH at 7:00 pm; November 1- Sacred Heart at 8:00 am, 12:10 pm and 7:00 pm. Holy Rosary at 6:30 pm. The following day, November 2, the Church remembers All Souls. Mass on that day will be 8:00 am at Sacred Heart.

On All Souls, Wednesday November 2, I will offer a morning of reflection from 9:00-10:30 am. I will reflect on All Souls as well as the gospels for the month of November to close out our liturgical year. Join me for this morning of prayer and reflection.


Fr. Ron

2 thoughts on “Thirty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time: Luke 19:1-10

  1. Dear Ron,
    I love this sketch! In a simple and direct way, you show Jesus, inviting Zacchaeus to come down into his open arms. Thanks for this reflection, it’s very inspiring! 🙂

  2. Peter–I remember your stories of him–may he truly be at peace.–Your paintings of him and especially “Grief” are expressive as always . Thank you. A

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