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  • Writer's pictureSam D

Weekly Liturgy : August 14-20

The Daughter of the Canaanite Woman, Peter Koenig ©2016
The Daughter of the Canaanite Woman, Peter Koenig ©2016

Matthew 15:21-28

The Message Translation

Jesus and the Woman With Persistence

21-22 From there Jesus took a trip to Tyre and Sidon. They had hardly arrived when a Canaanite woman came down from the hills and pleaded, “Mercy, Master, Son of David! My daughter is cruelly afflicted by an evil spirit.”

23-24 Jesus ignored her. The disciples came and complained, “Now she’s bothering us. Would you please take care of her? She’s driving us crazy.” Jesus refused, telling them, “I’ve got my hands full dealing with the lost sheep of Israel.”

25-27 Then the woman came back to Jesus, dropped to her knees, and begged. “Master, help me.” He said, “It’s not right to take bread out of children’s mouths and throw it to dogs.” She was quick: “You’re right, Master, but beggar dogs do get scraps from the master’s table.”

28 Jesus gave in. “Oh, woman, your faith is something else. What you want is what you get!” Right then her daughter became well.



Thoughts from Sam: I like this woman. Her daughter is not well and the woman is willing to try anything in order for her daughter to be healed. She’s not afraid to bother people and she’s not going to give up. She’s not deterred by Jesus’ seemingly dismissive response. And I am not sure what to make of Jesus’ comparison to the dogs - it seems rude. And yet, the woman has a quick response to again ask for the healing she’s seeking for her daughter. Finally Jesus sees her, really sees her, and heals her daughter. 

Jesus ignored her, the disciples were driven crazy by her, and yet she persisted. I am imagining that Jesus and the disciples felt like they were doing really good work and didn’t want to be pulled away from their work to deal with the annoyance in front of them. And I am reminded of times in my own life where I am too busy doing the “good work” that I miss the human need in front of me. 

This week, may we continue to ask for what we need in order to find healing, even if we feel we’ve already asked and been ignored. And this week, may we continue to see the human needs in front of us in spite of the never ending to do list.



Outward Mindset Application

Before making decisions this week, ask: who will be affected by this choice? Meet with that person/people before making your decision.

Pathways Toward Centeredness

Traditionalism (loving the world through our ritual and symbol):

Set an alarm on your phone for the same time each day this week. When the alarm rings, spend 5-10 minutes reading something that points you toward the Divine.

Questions for Reflection

Where do you need to faithfully keep asking for the things you need for your own healing?

Where do you need to faithfully put down your "good work" to meet the human need in front of you?


“Liturgy” refers to the habits and practices humans use to form community around shared values and meaning. At Church at the Park, we desire to be a community of practice, becoming people who see the world through the eyes of the marginalized, making meaning through the lens of pain and suffering, and committing ourselves to non-violence in a wounded world. This weekly email is intended to provide pathways of practice for becoming the type of people who embody these values.

Many of our reflections on each week's text come from other sources. If you're interested in reading more of what inspires us, here our our two favorite reflections.

Copyright (C) 2023 Church at the Park. All rights reserved.


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