picture of jesus teaching with raised left hand

Finding the Lost Parables of Divine Mercy


This rosary reflection focuses on two short parables about divine mercy that Jesus addressed to the Pharisees and scribes, leaders of the Jewish religion of his day.

The Gospel Account

In the passage, the leaders complain that Jesus spends time with those who are lost – outside the law – sinners and tax collectors. Jesus responds by showing how valuable the lost are – one sheep among one-hundred and one coin among ten. God seeks to find and restore them. 

This rosary reflection contains the full text of the parables from the Gospel of Luke, Luke 15:1-10.

The Five Decades

When you pray the five decades of this Rosary Reflection, use these five moments from the Gospel story. Read the Gospel verses for each decade and let the words sink in as you pray that decade.

First Decade: Jesus Gathers with Sinners (Luke 15:1-2)

The tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to listen to Jesus, but the Pharisees and scribes began to complain, saying, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” So to them he addressed this parable.

Second Decade: Finding the Lost Sheep (Luke 15:3-5)

“Which man among you having a hundred sheep and losing one of them would not leave the ninety-nine in the desert and go after the lost one until he finds it. And when he does find it, he sets it on his shoulder with great joy”

Third Decade: Celebrating the Return (Luke 15:6-7)

“And, upon his arrival home, he calls together his friends and neighbors and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep. I tell you, in just the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance.”

Fourth Decade: Finding the Lost Coin (Luke 15:8-9)

“Or what woman having ten coins and losing one would not light a lamp and sweep the house, searching carefully until she finds it? And when she does find it, she calls together her friends and neighbors and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found the coin I lost.’

Fifth Decade: Heaven’s Joy over Repentance (Luke 15:10)

“In just the same way, I tell you, there will be rejoicing among the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

What to Remember

These Gospel verses reflect the mercy of God present in Jesus to seek out and find what was lost, to bring it home, and to rejoice that all are safe and sound. Jesus’ mission was and is to restore people to God’s life and Kingdom. And, Jesus is waiting to use you to help with his mission.

As a follower of Jesus, and child of God, you have the privilege of letting Jesus find you, bring you home, and rejoice over you when you get lost in life’s turmoil. Ask Mary for the love, courage, and grace to seek, find, and rejoice in God’s saving work.

What to Pray For

  • For the humility to ask God for help when you feel lost and allow others to seek you out, bring you home, and rejoice over you.
  • For the Church, that it will continue to seek, find, and serve those in need of God’s mercy.
  • For all missionaries who leave their homeland to seek out and find those who have not heard of God’s love for them in Jesus.
  • For those who care for and make a home for others in their professions and families.

Feel free to pray the rosary using these Scripture verses for a deeper connection with Jesus’ mission.

 When This Gospel Appears

This Gospel reading is proclaimed on the Twenty-Fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time, in Cycle C of the Lectionary. The latest appearance is November 20, 2022.

* Scripture passages are from the United Conference of Catholic Bishops website, https://usccb.org/bible

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