Year C: September 26, 2010
First Reading: Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15
Pictures of Hollis Woods by Patricia Reilly Giff (Written for Grades 4-7)
Comment: Jeremiah purchases land in Jerusalem even as Babylon lays siege to the city. His prophetic action is one that speaks of hope for and trust in the future and God’s plans for God’s covenant people. A similar hopefulness can be found in the drawings of Hollis Woods. A misunderstood artist, she draws her desires in the language of pictures. More than anything, Hollis wishes to belong to a family. The W picture, like Jeremiah’s land, is an expression of faith and hope for a future that appears much different from Hollis’s present reality.
Psalm: Psalm 91:1-6, 14-16
Once When I Was Scared by Helena Clare Pittman (Written for Grades K-4)
Comment: This Psalm serves as a reminder of God’s presence at all times, even in the midst of darkness, terror, or the unknown. God says, “When they call to me, I will answer them; I will be with them in trouble…” It would be theologically irresponsible to claim that this text speaks of God removing fear or danger from our lives; rather, an awareness of God’s presence gives us courage in the face of danger. Daniel experiences a similar kind of danger as he journeys alone through the forest at night. Although he was afraid, Daniel found courage by using his imagination. As a grandfather he seeks to extend his presence and a sense of courage to his grandson through the gift of eagle feathers.
Second Reading: 1 Timothy 6:6-19
Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin (Grades 3-6)
Comment: “They are to do good, to be rich in good works, generous, and ready to share, thus storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of the life that really is life.” This instruction to Timothy parallels the discoveries made by Minli on her long journey to change her family’s fortune. Although she sets out believing earthly riches will bring happiness to her family, she discovers true wealth in the generosity, love, and kindness experienced in the relationships she builds along the way.
Third Reading: Luke 16:19-31
Tiger Woman by Laurence Yep (Written for Grades K-4)
Comment: Like the rich man, Tiger Woman selfishly feasts in front of the poor, who hunger for even a morsel of her meal. She turns away a beggar seeking food, claiming she is as hungry as a tiger. As the beggar is walking away, he tells the woman she will be what she says she is. The selfish woman morphs into a variety of animals and is on the verge of being cooked up and served as roast pig. Unlike the rich man, Tiger Woman is able to redeem herself before it’s too late. “In kindness I’ve become a believer, since I faced the wrong end of the cleaver.” Tiger Woman, along with the hearers of Jesus’ parable, is given the opportunity to change her ways.