Reading I


A reading of St. Paul to the Ephesians (Eph. 4:7-16)


Brothers and sisters:

Grace was given to each of us

according to the measure of Christ’s gift.

Therefore, it says:


He ascended on high and took prisoners captive;

he gave gifts to men.


What does “he ascended” mean except that he also descended

into the lower regions of the earth?

The one who descended is also the one who ascended

far above all the heavens,

that he might fill all things.


And he gave some as Apostles, others as prophets,

others as evangelists, others as pastors and teachers,

to equip the holy ones for the work of ministry,

for building up the Body of Christ,

until we all attain to the unity of faith

and knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood

to the extent of the full stature of Christ,

so that we may no longer be infants,

tossed by waves and swept along by every wind of teaching

arising from human trickery,

from their cunning in the interests of deceitful scheming.

Rather, living the truth in love,

we should grow in every way into him who is the head, Christ,

from whom the whole Body,

joined and held together by every supporting ligament,

with the proper functioning of each part,

brings about the Body’s growth and builds itself up in love.


Responsorial Psalm (Ps 122:1-2, 3-4AB, 4CD-5)


R. (1) Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

I rejoiced because they said to me,

“We will go up to the house of the LORD.”

And now we have set foot

within your gates, O Jerusalem.


R. Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

Jerusalem, built as a city

with compact unity.

To it the tribes go up,

the tribes of the LORD.


R. Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.

According to the decree for Israel,

to give thanks to the name of the LORD.

In it are set up judgment seats,

seats for the house of David.


R. Let us go rejoicing to the house of the Lord.



Alleluia (Ez. 33:11)


R. Alleluia, alleluia.

I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked man, says the Lord,

but rather in his conversion that he may live.

R. Alleluia, alleluia.





From the Gospel according to Luke (Lk 13:1-9)


Some people told Jesus about the Galileans

whose blood Pilate had mingled with the blood of their sacrifices.

He said to them in reply,

“Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way

they were greater sinners than all other Galileans?

By no means!

But I tell you, if you do not repent,

you will all perish as they did!

Or those eighteen people who were killed

when the tower at Siloam fell on them–

do you think they were more guilty;

than everyone else who lived in Jerusalem?

By no means!

But I tell you, if you do not repent,

you will all perish as they did!”


And he told them this parable:

“There once was a person who had a fig tree planted in his orchard,

and when he came in search of fruit on it but found none,

he said to the gardener,

‘For three years now, I have come in search of fruit on this fig tree

but have found none.

So cut it down.

Why should it exhaust the soil?’

He said to him in reply,

‘Sir, leave it for this year also,

and I shall cultivate the ground around it and fertilize it;

it may bear fruit in the future.

If not you can cut it down.’”




The fig tree that the master in the parable wants to uproot represents a sterile existence that is incapable of giving, incapable of doing good. It is the symbol of one who lives for himself, sated and calm, enjoying his own comforts, incapable of turning his gaze and his heart to those beside him who find themselves in conditions of suffering, poverty and hardship. (…) We can have great trust in God’s mercy but without abusing it. We must not justify spiritual laziness, but increase our commitment to respond promptly to this mercy with heartfelt sincerity. (Angelus, 24 March 2019)