LECTIO DIVINA: Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle B


A. Reading from the heart

But it’s not a superficial reading, just to see what it says.

You have to read from a special place. Not only because you must choose a quiet, serene place where you feel at peace. But also because this reading has to be done from the heart. “When you want to pray, enter your room” (Mt 6.6). St. Augustine will comment: “What is this room if not the same heart?” (S. dom. m.2, 11). Read not only externally.

B. Read a short text

It is not the time of spiritual, prolonged reading, but meditative.

Choose a short text. A text “short for the number of words, but large for the importance of its content” (in. Ps. 86, 1).

C. Read with willingness to receive

The attitude with which you must read is from the desire of God, recognizing, with humility, that everything comes from God and we are not before Him but beggars: “He knew that you were his beggar, and as a father of a family enormously rich in spiritual and eternal riches, he exhorts you and tells you Ask, search, call” (s. 61, 4).

D. Reading from the silence

It is necessary to silence all the voices inside the heart to be able to hear the voice of God. We can live deaf to the voice of God because of the many distractions of our life. St. Augustine said:

“You called me, you shouted and broke my deafness” (conf. 10,

38). “In silence I was looking for you strongly and the voices that my contrition of my soul raised towards your mercy were great” (conf. 7, 11).

E. Tolle, Lege (Take and read: conf. 8,29)

It’s time to read your own life in the light of the Word of God, as St. Augustine did, and let yourself be illuminated by it to get to know you in the light of God. As St. Augustine said: “May he know me, that I know you” (sun. 2, 1).


A. Meditating is: Thinking about the text, “ruminating it” St. Augustine says that those who belong to God are like the pure animals that were in the Ark of Noê, because

“Ruminated” (in. Ps. 141, 1).

B. Meditating is: Letting myself be questioned by the word of God so as not to resist God’s will. *What does your will mean? Do it in me in a way that does not resist your will” (s. 56, 7). C.To meditate is: To know that the text is addressed to me, in my own circumstance. It’s a letter from God to me.

The Bible are the letters that the Father who is in the Fatherland [heaven) sends us*. (in. Ps.

64, 2).

D. To meditate is: Let the Spirit “put his fire in you; that you receive his motion; enlighten him and raise his love” (s. 128,4)


A. It is the time to respond to the Word of God with the affection of the heart: “When we pray to God (…) he must always cry out with the heart. The cry of the heart is a vehement thought that, when it occurs in prayer, expresses a great affection” (en. Ps. 118, 29, 1).

B. It’s time to respond to the Word of God, speaking little and loving a lot: “Speaking a lot in prayer is as much as treating a necessary matter with superfluous words (…) The prayer consists of calling with all the perseverance and affection of a burning heart to the door of the One to whom we pray” (ep.130, 20).

C. It is the time to respond to the Word of God, considering if Christ is the center of my life and I love him with all my being: “When I adhere to you with all my being, there will be no more pain, no work for me, but all my life will be alive and full of you” (conf. 10, 28, 39).

D. It is time to respond to the Word of God, remembering that I am a pilgrim of the city of God and with my desire to come to God: “Your desire [of eternal life) is your prayer; if the desire is continuous, prayer is continuous” (en. Ps. 37, 14).


A. My inner eyes open to see the beauty of God:

“There is a certain beauty that we see with the eyes of the heart, and we love it and we get enraged” (en. Ps. 64, 8).

B. My inner being opens up to contemplate how my life and my being are embraced by God and how I embrace God: “Embrace God’s love and embrace God with love” (trin. 8, 12).

C. My inner being is built by God in contemplation: “We talk outwardly. God builds inside” (in. Ps. 126, 2).

D. My inner being contemplates and trusts in God: “In such a way I belong to the Almighty (…) that he enlightens me and saves me, that I do not fear anyone outside of him” (en. Ps. 26, 2, 3).


A. The encounter with God leads me to share with my brothers the joy of the encounter with God: “We cannot remain silent (…) raise the ineffable voice of joy” (in. Ps. 102, 8).

B. The encounter with God leads me to: Communicate the love of God: “If you love God, take away from the love of God from all that is with you” (en. Ps. 33, 2, 6).

C. The encounter with God leads me to recognize the presence of Christ in all those around me: “Christ, who is rich in heaven, wanted to be hungry in the poor” (en. Ps. 75, 9).

D. The encounter with God leads me to: Recognize the presence of God in all things: “Lord,

I love you but also heaven and earth and all that is contained in them, here they tell me from everywhere that I love you” (conf. 10, 8).


FIRST READING (Job 7:1-4, 6-7)
A reading from the Book of Job:

JOB spoke, saying: Is not man’s life on earth a drudgery?

Are not his days those of hirelings? He is a slave who longs for the shade,

a hireling who waits for his wages. So I have been assigned months of misery, and troubled nights have been allotted to me. If in bed I say, “When shall I arise?”

then the night drags on; I am filled with restlessness until the dawn. My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle; they come to an end without hope. Remember that my life is like the

wind; I shall not see happiness again.

The word of the Lord. R. Thanks be to God.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM (Psalm 147:1-2, 3-4, 5-6)

R. Praise the Lord, who heals the brokenhearted. or: R. Alleluia.

Praise the LORD, for he is good;
sing praise to our God, for he is gracious;
it is fitting to praise him.
The LORD rebuilds Jerusalem;
the dispersed of Israel he gathers.—R.
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
He tells the number of the stars; he calls each by name.—R.
Great is our Lord and mighty in power; to his wisdom there is no limit. The LORD sustains the lowly;
the wicked he casts to the ground.—R.

(1 Cor 9:16-19, 22-23)

A reading from the first Letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians:

BROTHERS and sisters: If I preach the gospel, this is no reason for me to boast, for an obligation has been imposed on me, and woe to me if I do not preach it! If I do so willingly, I have a recompense, but if unwillingly, then I have been entrusted with a stewardship. What then is my recompense? That, when I preach,

I offer the gospel free of charge so as not to make full use of my right in the gospel. Although I am free in regard to all, I have made myself a slave to all so as to win over as many as possible. To the weak I became weak, to win over the weak.

I have become all things to all, to save at least some. All this I do for the sake of the gospel, so that I too may have a share in it.

The word of the Lord. R. Thanks be to God.

ALLELUIA (Matthew 8:17)

R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Christ took away our infirmities and bore our diseases. R.Alleluia, alleluia.

(Mk 1:29-39)

+ A reading from the holy Gospel according to Mark:

ON leaving the synagogue, Jesus entered the house of Simon and Andrew with James and John. Simon’s mother-in-law lay sick with a fever. They immediately told him about her. He approached, grasped her hand, and helped her up. Then the fever left her and she waited on them. When it was evening, after sunset, they brought to him all who were ill or possessed by demons. The whole town was gathered at the door. He cured many who were sick with various diseases, and he drove out many demons, not permitting them to speak because they knew him. Rising very early before dawn, he left and went off to a deserted place, where he prayed. Simon and those who were with him pursued him and on finding him said,

“Everyone is looking for you.” He told them, “Let us go on to the nearby villages that I may preach there also. For this purpose have I come.” So he went into their synagogues, preaching and driving out demons throughout the whole of Galilee.

The Gospel of the Lord.—R. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.


In the Gospel we see Jesus entered the house of Simon and healed his mother in law, the Gospel helps us realize that as we follow Christ, he never extends his blessing and presence to all the members of our family or loved ones. Being a true human Jesus knows our burdens wounds and trials and even the challenges that our family experiences.

The Gospel also compels us towards the need to rediscover the importance of family in the society, the world today slowly forgets this value and much worst see the family as a liability and hindrance for one’s own success. Many social influencers advise their followers to leave and cut themselves off from their family specially when their families are in need of support from them. The world is teaching us to be individualistic. While it is true that support and assistance should be optional, we ought not to leave our family/community who are vulnerable in their time of need. The Gospel reiterates to us that charity begins at home, and it it somehow true that no one could love and do acts of charity for others while leaving their closest members in need. Pope Francis reminds us in his address to the plenary session of the pontifical academy of social sciences held in the Vatican, that the family consists in sharing relationships of faithful love, trust, cooperation, reciprocity, he also added that “the family humanizes people through the relationship of ‘we’ and at the same time promotes each persons legitimate differences”.

Our family might be the main cause of our sufferings and distraction but with out them, where are awe going to grow? To whom are we going to be patient and charitable? What cross our we going to bear. through  patience, grace, love and prayer we can transform this suffering into an offering. Let us heal our families by inviting Christ into our homes.


1- Our Father…
1- Hail Mary…
1- Glory be…

Almighty Father you who never allowed your son to be without a loving family, Through the grace of your Son, help us to re discover the value of family life, enter into our homes heal each and every one of us, remove from our hearts selfishness and individualism and grant us the grace that we may always see the benefit and value of being together and growing towards Christ.

Guide Questions for Contemplatio and Communicatio

1.   How and in what way does your family help you in your spiritual life?
2.   When and how did your family or community member helped you in your time of crisis?
3.   When and in what way did you helped others in their spiritual life or in their crisis?

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Fray Dennis Castillo, OAR

Fray Dennis Castillo, OAR

Augustinian Recollect missionary to Sierra Leone, Africa.