28th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C): Gospel – Luke 17:11-19
The ten lepers’ crying out to Jesus to “have pity” on them is an example of a prayer of petition, when we ask God for help with any need:
By prayer of petition we express awareness of our relationship with God. We are creatures who are not our own beginning, not the masters of adversity, not our own last end.
— Catechism paragraph 2629
Jesus responds to their request by healing them. His gift not only restores their physical health, but also ends their isolation from society, reuniting them with their families and giving them back their lives. Despite the life-transforming nature of this gift, only one person returns to express his gratitude and glorify God, in a prayer of thanksgiving.
We too have been cleansed by Christ, but our healing is an even greater miracle of redemption: we have been “disfigured by sin and death,” yet Christ restores us in the “Father’s likeness” (705), brings us into the very life of the Holy Trinity (1997), and enables us to fulfill our “original vocation” of eternal life (518, 1998).
How can we give thanks for this awesome gift? Christ himself has instituted the perfect way – through the Eucharist, which literally means “thanksgiving.”
The Eucharist contains and expresses all forms of prayer: it is the pure offering of the whole Body of Christ to the glory of God’s name…it is the sacrifice of praise (2643).
Question for reflection: When have I been especially grateful to God?