"This poor widow has put in more than all."
The Word This Week
“God does not have favourites”,
Notes for Readers
Here you are narrating a straightforward story, though it is worth being aware of the context. This little scene comes in the midst of dramatic events: a dreadful famine and drought are afflicting the whole land, which will eventually be ended by the prophet Elijah in the encounter with the prophets of Baal on
Make sure you know who is speaking when – one of the ways in which a reading can become difficult to listen to is when the reader does not have a clear idea of who the speaker is: find some way of making Elijah and the widow “sound different” – not by putting on different voices, but by your tone and inflection. Glance at the Gospel today, and see that the point being emphasised is generosity when we have nothing: underline the fears of the widow, but also her willingness to do what she can, but also clearly emphasise the promise of God and the happy ending to this little story.
The letter to the Hebrews can be a little difficult to understand sometimes, especially when it delves into cultural and religious ideas that are very far away from our own – a good example is today’s passage, which is all about priesthood: not the sort that we are familiar with, but the priesthood of the Temple in Jerusalem. This priesthood was about blood: the animal sacrifices that were offered every day in the
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