Our Lady Queen of Heaven
Catholic Church, Harwich, Essex

Eleventh, Twelfth and Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A) 18 and 25 June and 2 July 2023

Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time (Matthew 9:36-10:8)

This speech of Jesus’ is known as the Missionary Discourse. The opening words tell us that the motivation of Jesus in his preaching is compassion for those who are lost. This must be our motivation too in offering the good news to others. Jesus selects his twelve apostles. At first it may come as a surprise that with his first words to them Jesus apparently limits the mission of the apostles. The first priority must be the people of Israel “the lost sheep”. Later the mission will be extended to all the nations. The message being ‘The Kingdom of Heaven is near’. The message and the healings are to be given freely.

Does my attitude to those who are lost imitate the compassion of Jesus?

Do I encourage and support those who are called to work for the spread of the gospel?

We pray that the Church may maintain its fidelity to the gospel of Jesus.

We pray that the Jewish people may be faithful to God’s covenant.


Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Matthew 10:26-33)

We continue with the Missionary Discourse of Jesus. Jesus encourages the apostles to speak out and foresees the persecution of the missionaries. At the same time he recognises that great courage is necessary to preach the gospel.

Do I have the courage to speak up for Christ when others mock my religion?

Do I trust in the providential care of the Father?

We pray for all those who speak up for the Christian message at the risk of their lives.

We pray for faith and courage amid all the difficulties of life.


Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Matthew 10: 37-42)

In the concluding words of the Missionary Discourse, Jesus challenges the disciples, and us too, to put no other person before our faith in him. The cross is mentioned for the first time, not the cross of Jesus, but the difficult burden that each one must bear in imitation of him. We are called to give our lives as Christ himself will give his life.

Do I place my faith in Jesus first in my life and relationships?

Am I willing to embrace my cross, whatever form it may take?

We pray for those who make great sacrifices in their service of the gospel.

We pray for generosity to the little ones of God.


                                                                                                                Fr Adrian Graffy