Saturday 25 July 2015

Thursday of the 20th Week, uneven numbered yerar Jeudi de la 20e semaine, année impaire

“Jesus said to them, ’The Kingdom of God may be compared to a king who gave a feast for his son’s wedding.”

Jg.11, 29-39 Ps.39 Mt.22,1-14

Thursday of 20th Week, uneven numbered year

“He sent his servants to call those who had been invited, but they would not come.Next he sent some more servants with the words, ’Tell those who have been invited :” Look, my banquet is all prepared, my oxen and fattened cattle have been slaughtered, everything is ready.Come to the wedding.“But they were not interested : one went off to his farm, another to his business, and the rest seized his servants, ill-treated them and killed them.”

In this text we recognise the drama of the First Testament.Throughout the centuries, God invited his people to enter into a Covenant with Him, to share His Love, this invitation to a wedding feast, a festive meal where the Covenant is celebrated with humanity.Unfortunately, men often responded indifferently to the Divine invitation. Since some refused, this opened up the invitation to more and more people,. The new wedding feast in a new Covenant is a source of great joy for each one of us. We can truly thank God for it. Jesus speaks in parables! It becomes harder and harder for those who are listening to Jesus to understand the meaning of the mystery of the Kingdom of Heaven so Jesus gives more and more examples to explain his message : ’The Kingdom of God is like a king who was celebrating his son’s wedding feast.’ It is such a strong image. The Kingdom of God is great Happiness. Who would refuse this message? ’But they didn’t want to come! ’It is a dramatic situation for Jesus. He came to his own and his own didn’t welcome him.

“Then he said to his servants, ’The wedding is ready; but as those who were invited proved to be unworthy, go to the main crossroads and invite everyone you can find to invite to the wedding. ’So these servants went out onto the roads and collected together everyone they could find, bad and good alike; and the wedding hall was filled with guests.”

At certain moments during the Eucharist we ask forgiveness from the Lord our God.It is a way of recognising how the way we have prepared to welcome the gift of God in our lives as being far from perfect.We are not up to such an invitation, but we commend ourselves to God’s Mercy, wanting each day to respond to it more and more fittingly.God saves us and has prepared for us in the Eucharist an extraordinary meal. When we approach Jesus, we ought to see how we can please, Him, and what better way than to clothe ourselves in Christ, accomplishing as He does what is pleasing to the Father. We cannot take part in the Lord’s meal without also taking part in his work of Love in this world. Communion with our brothers and sisters brings with it a communion with our brothers and sisters within the Church and humanity.Our participation in the Eucharist is linked to our way of living day after day where we thus weave our wedding clothes. How happy are we if we participate in this way in the wedding feast of the Lamb!

“When the king came in to look at the guests he noticed one man who was not wearing a wedding garment, and said to him, ’ How did you get in here, my friend, without a wedding garment?’ And the man was silent. Then the king said to the attendants, ’Bind him hand and foot and throw him into the darkness outside, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth. For many are invited but not all are chosen.”

The King excludes the man who came in without having put on the adequate clothes for the celebration.The symbolic reading of this text has us understand how the works of our conversion are important.Here the outer wedding garments are outwardly expressed by what we have welcomed inwardly in faith. Saint Jerome comments this Gospel passage:

’This man personifies everything that resembles evil . The wedding garment are the Lord’s precepts, the works accomplished according to the law of the Gospel which is the garment of the new man."

it is with a vulnerable faith that we enter into the Kingdom. We must be re-clothed in Christ for He will guide us back to our homeland. Happy are we who are invited to the Lord’s wedding feast! We are familiar with this invitation given out

by the priest after the ’Lamb of God’ at mass. This invitation concerns us in a particular way, we who have heard the Lord’s invitation. It is also addressed to this immense crowd, precisely to the crowd who had put on again the garment of good works, the crowd which is going to participate in the Lamb’s wedding feast.

Let us ask for the grace to respond through our love to the infinite Love of God.