Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Jun 24, 2020 | Gospel Reflections

Matthew 10: 37-42

Sunday Reflection by Sister Michela Sheehan, SNDdeN

At the time Matthew wrote his gospel the fact of having to break with one’s family was a very painful and concrete necessity .The leaders of the Jews had decided that those who converted to Christ were traitors and must be expelled from their families and would no longer be members of the people of Israel. Whoever chose to convert knew this choice would have very drastic financial, social and even emotional consequences.

Jesus had said, “Whoever loves mother, father…more than me is not worthy of me’’. Is there another meaning of those words? Was Jesus asking his followers to give up everything, to become powerless? – Then who could follow and why?

Perhaps Jesus was giving a strong hint – perhaps following is a call, a vocation to share in the fate of God for the life of the world, a task that could only be done through, with and in God: a call to be converted, to become selfless, to allow Jesus to be first.

That is easier to understand. But we can’t convert ourselves; we have to be converted. We have to settle in the world in such a way that circumstances, reality, can get to us.

Circumstances abound, reality embraces attention. Jesus is here in the suffering, the needy, the homeless, co-workers, friends, family, strangers.  There is a saying – What would Jesus do?

What is my answer, my action? In losing ourselves, we find ourselves.  Thank you, Jesus!

With gratitude to Richard Rohr, The African Bible

Matthew 10: 37-42

“Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
“Whoever receives you receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me. Whoever receives a prophet because he is a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and whoever receives a righteous man because he is righteous will receive a righteous man’s reward. And whoever gives only a cup of cold water to one of these little ones to drink because he is a disciple—amen, I say to you, he will surely not lose his reward.”

The word of the Lord


Meet Sister Michela Sheehan, SNDdeN

Sister Michela Sheehan, SNDdeN is the ninth child of thirteen children, born to an Irish Catholic family in Eureka, CA. She entered the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur on Valentine’s Day in 1954. Sr. Michela has had a lively and varied life in Notre Dame: teaching/administration in California, Washington State and Oregon. In the United States, she was a Foster Mother for medically fragile infants in the San Francisco Bay Area, and an administrator of a home for homeless women and children in East Los Angeles. She worked also with our Sisters in Notre Dame schools in Nigeria and South Africa. Sr. Michela now volunteers at Ose Adams Medical Pavilion and Anderson Lucchetti Women’s and Children’s Center in Sacramento, CA and helps at River City Food Bank. She would say about her religious life: “All continues to be a grace-filled life.”