15th Sunday of Year A


Catechism Themes

15th Sunday of Year A

CCC 546: Christ teaches through parables
CCC 1703-1709: capacity to know and correspond to the voice of God
CCC 2006-2011: God associates man in working of grace
CCC 1046-1047: creation part of the new universe
CCC 2707: the value of meditation

Morality and the Passions (CCC 1763-1770)

God’s Word

by Fr. Clement D. Thibodeau



15th Sunday of Year A

Lesson Plans

15th Sunday of Year A –

Catechist Background and Preparation
Primary Session
Intermediate Session
Junior High School

Sacred Scripture

We Catholics believe that God is the author of sacred scripture. The texts of both the Old and New Testaments, while composed and set down by humans, were written under the inspiration of God. Therefore, that truth which God endeavors to communicate to us, we hold, is faithfully transmitted in the books of scripture (CCC 106-07). However, we believe we are espoused to the active Word of God, which is not a written word, but incarnated and alive. The Old and New Testaments will contain only dry, insignificant, and dead letters unless the living Word, Jesus Christ, illuminates our minds and hearts to understand what truth is contained therein (CCC 108). 

The Church teaches that to faithfully interpret scripture one must read it holistically and from within the tradition. What does this mean? First, in the interpretation of scripture one must be very attentive to its whole content and unity of purpose. The individual books of the Bible are different, yet there is a unity and wholeness to all of them together-given that they revolve around the center and heart of God’s plan for us who is Jesus Christ (CCC 112). Second, scripture was written in the Church’s heart rather than in documentary texts, and therefore it must be read and understood within the living tradition of the community of the faithful. 

In this vein, it was the living teaching office of the Church which discerned the canon of the Old and New Testaments. The canon refers to the official listing of which writings or books belong to the Bible, the inspired Word of God (CCC 120). The two Testaments, Old and New, are united in presenting the plan of God, although as Christians we read the Old Testament in the light of Jesus-seeing in these scriptures a typology which prefigures what God has effected in Christ (CCC 128). 

Catholics hold that sacred scripture is food for our souls, a font from which we might draw strength for nourishing our faith. Therefore, the Second Vatican Council urged that all members of the Church should have as wide an access as possible to sacred scripture (DV 22). Through homilies, pastoral preaching, catechetics, and every other form of instruction, the ministry of the Word is carried out in the Catholic Church (CCC 132).


  • How are you nourished by God’s Word in the sacred scriptures?
  • Why is God’s Word part of the Mass?
  • What does it mean to carry the good news to others?
catechism catholic doctrine


15th Sunday of Year A


15th Sunday of Year A

Bible Verses Cited in Catechism

1st Reading

Is 55:10-11

No need to fill out form. Scroll down and look for YELLOW highlights.

Courtesy of Catholic Cross Reference Online

2nd Reading

Rom 8:18-23

No need to fill out form. Scroll down and look for YELLOW highlights.

Courtesy of Catholic Cross Reference Online

Gospel Reading

Mt 13:1-23

No need to fill out form. Scroll down and look for YELLOW highlights.

Featured Video

Featured Lesson

28 Lessons

Fr. Eamon Tobin

Prayer (Part 1).

What is prayer? What are the five traditional forms of prayer? What should we pray for? Dealing with unanswered prayer, distractions, prayer in painful times, and spiritual dryness.

Animated Catechism Series

3 Minute

70 hand drawn and animated episodes, each 3-4 minutes long. The series follows and explains the Creed, covering all four parts of the Catechism. 


MAN: Episodes 1-6
GOD: 12-20
JESUS: 27-33
CHURCH: 51-60

Courtesy of Catholic Cross Reference Online

15th Sunday of Year A


The Sower (Is the Law Absolute or Relative?)

Ask an eight-year-old to explain the parable of the sower and he may look as though you have asked him to explain quantum mechanics. But ask the same child what three characters Dorothy met as she walked down the yellow brick road in The Wizard of Oz, and he’ll have the answer immediately.

There is a linkage between the symbolism of these two stories. Christ compares the seed that fell on the footpath, the thorn bush, and the rocky ground to the one who does not understand, care about, or cannot endure the challenges that life dishes out (Matt. 13:1–23, Mark 4:1-20, Luke 8:4–15). Dorothy encounters the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, and the Cowardly Lion and notices their shortcomings: no mind, no heart, and no courage.

The seed that fell on the footpath represents the one who fails to understand the word of God. Christ warned of false prophets and false teachers. The remedy that Christ offered was the power of the Holy Spirit acting through the Catholic Church. Wisdom begins with the desire to know. Solomon’s request for an understanding heart illustrates how wisdom can only come from God.

We are expected to be certain in our faith but to question our moral judgments. Instead, many people express doubt about their faith, yet they feel certain that their actions are proper. Abortion, euthanasia, and contraception are considered by the Church always to be wrong. Yet even many Catholics think that there is flexibility regarding these issues.

Materialistic issues such as gluttony, avarice and sloth seem more subjective, and yet many people make decisions regarding these issues with a degree of certitude. Only one with fear of the Lord can recognize the certainty of some issues, while seeing that God alone will decide other issues.

The Baltimore Catechism begins by explaining that the purpose of man’s existence is to know God, to love him, and to serve him. It is only when one makes that initial move toward knowledge that he can love God with his whole mind. Christ’s discussion of the last judgment indicates that there will be some surprises (Matt. 25:37, 44).