November 3, 2016 (Thursday)

St. Martin de Porres, religious

Thursday of the 31st Week 

Phil 3:3-8a • Ps 105

Lk 15:1-10



1The tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to listen to Jesus, 2but the Pharisees and scribes began to complain, saying, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” 3So to them he addressed this parable. 4“What man among you having a hundred sheep and losing one of them would not leave the ninety-nine in the desert and go after the lost one until he finds it? 5And when he does find it, he sets it on his shoulders with great joy 6and, upon his arrival home, he calls together his friends and neighbors and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.’ 7I tell you, in just the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance.

8“Or what woman having ten coins and losing one would not light a lamp and sweep the house, searching carefully until she finds it? 9And when she does find it, she calls together her friends and neighbors and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found the coin that I lost.’ 10In just the same way, I tell you, there will be rejoicing among the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”




The Pharisees and scribes make this complaint, scandalized by the way Jesus treats sinners. They believe that, as teacher and rabbi, Jesus should not be associating with sinners. He is courting misinterpretations, like condoning their sins.

What these self-righteous people say may be true, but Jesus disagrees. He replies with three parables, two of which are in the Gospel for today.

In the parable of the lost coin, the woman who loses one of her ten coins must find it to make the number of her coins complete. Some interpreters point to the ten coins as part of the headdress of a woman about to get married. She cannot afford to lose one. She must do everything to find it; after all, it must be just there in the house. When she finds the lost coin, she shares her great joy with her friends and neighbors.

Jesus tells his staunch critics that as the one sent by God, he has the mission to go after the lost children of God. There is great joy in heaven when he finds one who has been lost.

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