The Tradition of the Elders – Twenty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Lesson Overview

In this week’s Gospel passage, Jesus teaches us that it is what is inside of us that truly leads us to sinfulness rather than what comes from outside of us. Jesus warns us that what matters most is what is in our hearts. In this lesson, students will reflect on the movement of the liturgical seasons and the Good News of the Gospel.

Lesson Materials


  1. Have students read the Gospel passage, or read it aloud to your students, and then answer the focus questions. You may have students answer them on their own or you may discuss them together as a class.
  2. Review and discuss the answers to the focus questions.
  3. Have your students read The Joy of the Gospel essay and respond to the reflection questions.
  4. Consider conducing a class discussion using the reflection questions.

Answer Key

Focus Questions

  1. The Pharisees noticed that some disciples were eating with unwashed hands. This upset them because of the tradition of all Jews carefully washing their hands before eating.(Note: this washing was a ritualistic practice and not really about removing dirt and germs from their hands)
  2. Quoting Isaiah, He said that they followed the traditions of man without following the Commandments of God. Therefore, their traditions were hollow or meaningless and not done to worship God.
  3. From within ourselves, instead of from outside of ourselves.
  4. Evil thoughts, unchastity, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, licentiousness, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, and folly.

Reflection Questions

Accept reasoned answers.

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