The Lord said, “As you wish that men would do to you, do so to them. If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to receive as much again.
“But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for he is kind to the ungrateful and the selfish. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.”
1. This Gospel ends with the call to “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” What does the word mercy or merciful mean? To help figure the meaning of this word out, try looking it up in a dictionary and also asking two people you know to define the word. You can compare the three definitions you found.
2. Why does the Gospel say we should be merciful?
3. How are you like your mom and dad? How do you look like them? Act like them? Sound like them?
4. How does the reading tell us we can become children of God the Father?
5. If we become children of God by being merciful the way God is merciful then we need to find out how God is merciful. To do that, listen in the liturgy for places where we say “Lord have mercy.” What kinds of things does the priest or deacon ask God for, before we say, “Lord have mercy”?
6. How are your parents, teachers, friends, or people at church merciful, the way God is merciful?
7. What is one thing you can do this week to be merciful to someone?