Rejoicing in Mercy: A Prayer Commentary on the Gospel of Luke

by Father Louis Cameli

Reviewedby Eileen Quinn Knight, Ph.D. Profiles in Catholicism


Since we are utilizing the Scriptures from St. Luke as we begin our liturgical year, this book is a perfect aide to read the Scriptures more fully. In the foreword of the book Cardinal Cupich states: “The joy of the gospel is the recognition of God’s love at work in our lives and in the world. Like’s account of the gospel of Jesus Christ highlights both the love of God and the joy that this love ignites in the hearts of believers.”


The prolific writer and holy man-priest explains how the format follows a set pattern:

  • The whole Gospel of Saint Luke is reproduced

  • Passages that express something about love are identified

  • An introduction to the passage follows

  • A verse or two of the passage is offered for reflection

  • A meditation on the passage explains the “mercy meaning’

  • A question for reflection follows

  • A prayer directs our minds and hearts to the merciful Lord.

This prayer commentary on Luke lends itself to many different uses. Of course, it can be a companion for personal prayer and reflection. It can also be used in small groups and even in classroom settings. The prayer commentary is meant to lead readers, whether individually or in groups, to a personal encounter with God’s word and a deeper appreciation of God’s love fulfilling Pope Francis’ hope that we be drawn constantly to contemplate God’s love.” Fr. Cameli


An example of a meditation from Luke 4:9


Just as the temptations we experience in our own lives have many layers of meaning, so do the temptations of Jesus. If we look on his temptations with the eyes of love, we come to understand that not only is the devil trying to divert him from his true mission but, in the process, the devil is also offering him false and self-centered mercies. He is saying “If you are hungry be kind and merciful to yourself and turn this stone into a loaf of bread. If you want to win the kingdoms of the world, be kind and merciful to yourself and do it easily with a simple act of submission to me. If you want the attention and admiration of the crowd, be kind and merciful to yourself and do it easily by throwing yourself off the pinnacle of the temple and letting God catch you.” This is the kind of love that the devil offers, and it is thoroughly false and self-centered instead of being attuned to the will of God, this false love goes after the path of least resistance. Father Cameli follows the meditation with a question: When have I experienced a temptation to embrace a false or easy love that is really no love at all? He follows the question with a prayer: Grant us, O Lord, the spirit of discernment to know the genuine path that leads to you. When we face choices, enable us to see the way of true love. As you are steadfast in your love, make us faithful not to our comfort but to your holy will.” Everyone who reads this book will enrich their liturgical life this year as we rely on the Scriptures of Luke and the directions of Fr. Cameli.