The parable of the laborers

Last week’s reading from the Gospel was about the mercy of the king, and this week’s seems to be about justice. Last week, the debtor who received mercy from the king could not extend mercy to somebody in his debt. This week, the laborers agree on a just wage with the landowner at the start of the day, but they cry injustice at the end of the day when they see what others are paid. Continue reading “The parable of the laborers”

Tweeting the Parable of the Laborers

The defining characteristic of the social media tool Twitter is the 140 character length limitation. Twitter started on cell phones, and the old messaging systems would only accept 140 characters. Most of what we like and don’t like about Twitter is due to this size constraint.

The 4pm Saturday Vigil Mass is very much like Twitter: everyone from the Archbishop on down knows it cannot last more than 38 minutes. There is no way a Deacon is going to get away with preaching for 9 or 10 minutes. So, this homily is a series of tweets.

  1. Last week’s gospel was about Mercy; this one is about Justice.
  2. What do those words mean?
    1. Justice is giving you what you deserve.
    2. Mercy is NOT giving you what you deserve.
    3. Justice is you getting what you deserve. Mercy is you NOT getting you what you deserve.
  3. Isaiah reminds us in the reading today God’s thoughts are not our thoughts but are much higher than ours.
  4. Why are our thoughts not his?
    1. We don’t know everything, and we don’t love everyone. God Does.
    2. We are not free of our passions and emotions. We sin. God Doesn’t.
  5. We are not equipped to administer true justice. Only God can do it right.
  1. Why don’t we get Mercy and Justice? Because of Pride and Envy.
    1. Pride: I am the center of the universe and know what is best in every situation.
    2. Bob Marley on Pride: When you point your finger, three are pointing back at you.
    3. Envy: I am sad that somebody else is being blessed.
    4. The laborers hired early were sad the late hires got well paid.
  2. Counter Pride with Humility.
    1. Humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking less about yourself.
  3. Counter Envy with Gratitude.
    1. Count your own blessings first, then you won’t mind counting another’s blessings.
  4. Mother Teresa’s Humility List
    1. Speak as little as possible about yourself.
    2. Give in, in discussions, even when you are right.
    3. Do not dwell on the faults of others.

Mother Teresa is a saint. She’s in heaven. She’s a good one to emulate.

St. Teresa of Calcutta, pray for us.

Dads, let your kids see you pray

The father of the groom of a couple I’m preparing for Holy Matrimony told me a story from William F. Buckley:

When asked where he got his strong Catholic faith, Buckley said his Mother was always making them learn this and that but what he really remembered was the time he was making his customary trip to his parents’ bedroom to kiss his father good night only to see his father on his knees in prayer.

Mom is important to a child’s faith formation, but Dad seems to be the key to a boy’s faith retention.

Let your children see that you love Jesus, fathers. Let them see that you trust him. Go to church with your sons before you go to the golf course with them. The faith you teach them by example will be your most important legacy.