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Fourth Sunday of Lent
Year A
March 22, 2020
Anne Osdieck

First Reading

1 Samuel 16:1b, 6-7, 10-13a

1. “Not as man sees does God see, because man sees the appearance but the Lord looks into the hearts.” Explain how this applies to the choice of David, who was the youngest and least likely son, as king.

2. Does the right grace come along with the call? What in this reading tells you that? When you feel you have been summoned to perform some task for God, what do you do? Assume that God will give you what you need to get the job done? Or back down at the thought of obstacles?

Second Reading

Ephesians 5:8-14

1. Define personal and national “darkness” as it exists in the world today. St. Paul says that you are light. If you could, what darkness in the world would you dispel? Is there some way you could do this on a small scale where you are right now?

2. Is the Church present in every dark place that you think Christ would be if he were physically present in the world today? In which of those dark places can you find your parish working to bring light?

John 9:1-41

1. In the beginning of the Gospel, the blind man was simply a man on the street. By the end of the Gospel he was thrown out of the synagogue for defending Jesus. What changed him into a disciple? Which of these titles fits you: passer-by, believer, confessor, challenger, or disciple?

2. Pope Francis tracks the blind man’s path from spiritual blindness to light Can you relate to your own spiritual blindness slowly turning to light in your life?

The path of the blind man … is a gradual process that begins with knowing Jesus’ name. He does not know anything else about him. In fact, he says: “The man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes” (Jn 9:11). In response to the pressing questions of the doctors of the law he first says that Jesus is a prophet (Jn 9:17)) and then a man close to God (Jn 9:31). After he is thrown out of the Temple, excluded from society, Jesus finds him again and “opens his eyes” a second time, revealing to him is true identity: “I am the Messiah,” he tells him. At this point, the man who was blind exclaims: “I believe, Lord!” (Jn 9:38), and prostrates himself before Jesus.

This is a passage of the Gospel that gives us a glimpse of the drama of the interior blindness of many people. And we glimpse our own interior blindness too because we sometimes have moments of such blindness. ... Let us open ourselves to the light of the Lord, he awaits us always in order to enable us to see better, to give us more light, to forgive us. Let us not forget this!

Pope Francis, March 30, 2014


Anne Osdieck

Art by Martin (Steve) Erspamer, OSB
from Religious Clip Art for the Liturgical Year (A, B, and C). This art may be reproduced only by parishes who purchase the collection in book or CD-ROM form. For more information go