SUNDAY Sept. 28 2014 / 26th Sunday, Year A
[__01__] What names would be on your guest list? Or…what names were on a guest list which you prepared?
I ask this because in this parable, we might say, that there is a guest list, an invitation list, a mailing list.
Two invitations are extended in the parable of the two sons. Two invitations are extended to each of the two sons. One accepts the invitation to work in the vineyard; the other turns down the invitation.
[__02__] Are there not occasions when we extend invitations, recognizing that not everyone will respond YES. The RSVP is a free choice; some will express their regrets on the RSVP card.
Nevertheless, even though we are not certain exactly who would respond YES, we go over the list carefully to ensure that no one important is omitted.
It is Good News to be asked, to be invited.
It is up to you and me – just as it was up to the 2 sons – to determine their response.
One said RSVP Yes; the other conveys his regrets. 1 of the 2 appears for work.
[__03__] In this parable our Savior expresses his desire, his invitation to all of us, to work in his vineyard, to work for the coming of God’s kingdom.
Sometimes, this is an invitation that we try not to open – or we try to get out of…
Do we have something better to do? A better offer?
That is, we may – at times – avoid God’s invitation or appeal… because we have another call coming in.
“Please hold…” [__Pause___]
[__04__] Do we not, at times, feel ambivalent or indifferent about certain responsibilities – certain calls or messages – in our lives?
We might prefer to reject them or move in the opposite direction.
When we read – in the parable – that the Lord is calling us to work in his vineyard, this would include – for example – the call to come to church on Sunday…for Sunday Mass.. it would include also repentance of our sins… confession.
For some of us, it might include becoming a priest or entering religious life..this would be a way to work in the vineyard.
But, we also receive God’s call to work in the vineyard to do his will …
- Outside of church or the chapel
- At home
- In the library
- In our own dorm rooms
- At the dinner table.
For example, the Lord calls us invites us to…
[__04.01__] Love the person whom others might reject.
Such an invitation may get lost in an In-Box full of invitations to love – or care about –persons with greater attractiveness or popularity.
[Please hold… one of the sons says to his father… I have someone on the other line…]
What if I were seen – what if you were seen – eating lunch with such an unpopular person, giving my time generously to him or here …Maybe I will not get the reward I want for my “day’s work”.
[__04.02__] For example, the Lord calls us invites us to…
Love the person who may be dying, who may suffer from illnesss.
The reward here may be hard to perceive or read…
[Please hold… I’m not sure if I deleted your message…Maybe I should listen to it again..I may have it saved ..somewhere. ]
Loving and caring for someone who is dying or infirm or somehow disabled, we protect human life at all stages.
You and I are also, in a way, defending our own lives … by doing to others as you would have them do to you (Luke 6:31).
The protection of our own lives is tied to – connected to – our protection of others.
Such is the message of the 4th commandment – “Honor your father and your mother that you may have a long life upon the earth”
We honor our parents because they gave us life…
Neverthless, the invitation too may be one that requires extra effort…to re-read and to accept.
[__05__] Each of the two sons receives the same message.
Only 1 of the 2 is able to respond at this time.. only 1 of the 2 can return with his own message of willingness. We might say that this is not beause his reward was greater … the reward was the same.
Don’t we perform many of our good actions not because of a reward … but simply because we know that someone is asking … because we were invited?
Knowing that you and I are being asked personally..that God relies on us to help… and that another person also relies on us to help…this is enough reason to say YES.
This parable reminds us that the Lord desire our appearance, our presence… our YES.
It is Good News to be asked. [__fin__]