August 28, 2022
Twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time
Ronald Raab, CSC
Prayers of the Faithful/Reflection
O God, offer us, your followers, food that will last. Do not delay to feed us with courage as we witness in our day the many changes within the church. Feed us as we face derision. Feed us as we ache to satisfy the many factions in our pews. Feed us as we wait for unity. Feed us because we cannot feed ourselves. Help us to know the food of heaven is here on earth. Help us to taste such a mystery this day.
O God, you invite us to your banquet. You invite us as we are, lonely, emotionally crippled, and sometimes spiritually asleep. You invite us when we resist, you encourage us when we are lost. You offer us love when we feel so very alone. We know your banquet is the place of nourishment, yet so often we want to turn away or go back to bed. Restore your vision of community within us in this time on earth when individuality is our only food. Help us envision the day when your food becomes a reality on earth when we finally become your people, broken open in love, unified with love, and given to others to serve the least among us.
O God, instill within us a new humility. True humbleness is lost on us these days when our sense of entitlement is our motivation. Push aside our pride, tidy up our conscience, sturdy our self-esteem, but most of all, allow us to come before you knowing you are the source of life. We can do nothing without you. Restore humility within us, not the fake sense of humility that we think shrinks us, but the true and beautiful reality that guides us to you. Help our children come to you when their lives don’t turn out as they plan. Help our elderly find you when ill- health and discouragement settles into their bones. Humility does not dirty our gifts. The holy humility in you changes us when we finally know we can’t live this life on our own. Humility is finally that grace when we fully realize we live only in you.
O God, come to us and welcome us to your table. Your food is not just to satisfy our souls. Your food challenges us. Your food gives us purpose on earth and heals the darkest places of our lives. Your food is nourishment we cannot discover in a counselor’s office or in a self-help book. Your food has power beyond our imagining to heal the most self-sufficient and the addicted. Your food is sheer mystery. Your food invites us to view our lives differently. Your food connects us to our deepest selves so we can serve you unreservedly. Your food does not end but is constantly broken for the life of all believers. Your food is not stingy. Your food spreads hope when we finally understand that we are hungrier than we first imagined. Your food is sacred Word. Your food is living Sacrament. Around your table we find not just our friends but the diversity of humanity singing one song, a hymn of eternal love.
O God, invite us to be seated among those who challenge us. We accept your invitation to enjoy the banquet. When we feed on self-pride, invite us to sit next to those who struggle with mental anguish and the effects of being sexually abused as children. We shall find life among those who have searched for deep meaning and purpose. When we find pride in our accomplishments, seat us among people who rely on you for their creativity and daily work. Then we will know we can do nothing without you when we hear people with genuine faith. When we live in pretense and false-power, seat us next the truly wise and most humble. It is at your banquet where you teach us the meaning of real nourishment. It is feeding among the humble where we can finally be hungry for the things that matter.
O God, give us you alone in our hunger. Feed us in your kindness. Offer us the food of your presence and the hope of Jesus’ passion, death and resurrection. Your banquet is bounty. Your banquet is our constant home. Your banquet leads us home to you. It is our honor to dine with you.