Homily for the twenty-eighth Sunday of the year - Year A - Mt. 22:1-14


by

Father Daniel Meynen
 
 

"Again Jesus spoke to them in parables, saying, «The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a marriage feast for his son, and sent his servants to call those who were invited to the marriage feast; but they would not come. Again he sent other servants, saying, "Tell those who are invited, Behold, I have made ready my dinner, my oxen and my fat calves are killed, and everything is ready; come to the marriage feast." But they made light of it and went off, one to his farm, another to his business, while the rest seized his servants, treated them shamefully, and killed them. The king was angry, and he sent his troops and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. Then he said to his servants, "The wedding is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore to the thoroughfares, and invite to the marriage feast as many as you find." And those servants went out into the streets and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good; so the wedding hall was filled with guests.»


" «But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment; and he said to him, "Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?" And he was speechless. Then the king said to the attendants, "Bind him hand and foot, and cast him into the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth." For many are called, but few are chosen.» "





Homily:


"Again Jesus spoke to them in parables, saying, «The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a marriage feast for his son, and sent his servants to call those who were invited to the marriage feast; but they would not come. Again he sent other servants, saying, "Tell those who are invited, Behold, I have made ready my dinner, my oxen and my fat calves are killed, and everything is ready; come to the marriage feast." But they made light of it and went off, one to his farm, another to his business, while the rest seized his servants, treated them shamefully, and killed them.» "


When a football team loses a game, we sometimes say: "They had no luck!" Even though all the players had put in much practice and had played with talent, chance was not on their side, and they lost the game... So there is in life an imponderable element that we call "chance", an element that intervenes in the lives of some but not all. For, if it were otherwise, there would never be any losers... If everyone does not have luck, it is the fault of the well-known Original Sin, through which death entered into the world, and along with death, suffering...


However, even if all men aren't favored by chance, Jesus wants all men to receive from his Father the grace of Salvation: God wants to save all men! In Jesus the Savior of men, all men and women have the same chance, which is called grace: the grace of salvation! But, as we know, having a chance is not enough: one must seize that chance! And the same is true with the grace of Salvation in Jesus Christ: one must seize grace, in order that it might seize us!


Did not all the guests invited to the marriage feast of the king's son, of whom Jesus speaks, have an incredible chance? Certainly! So then why did they not seize their chance? Simply because they did not recognize that chance, they did not realize in their spirit what was the nature and the magnitude of that chance... In short, they did not take the time to reflect within themselves and to meditate in their spirit; if they had, they would have realized what their chance was, and they would have seized it!


" «The king was angry, and he sent his troops and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. Then he said to his servants, "The wedding is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore to the thoroughfares, and invite to the marriage feast as many as you find." And those servants went out into the streets and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good; so the wedding hall was filled with guests.» "


Humanly, in a natural manner, man can either understand or not understand the chance offered to him: it depends on the dispositions of the man himself. But it is not the same with grace: grace bears within itself the supernatural light that interiorly enlightens every man and woman who truly wants to see it, in order that they might seize the light of grace in their spirit. All this is simple, and man has but one thing to do: to freely allow himself to be invaded by the light of grace...


However, there have been, and there are still, men and women who do not want the light of grace to penetrate them. Why? Simply because another light has already captivated them! That other light is that of Satan, whom we call Lucifer, which means the Light-Bearer. This light of Satan can be quite diverse in appearance: it could be a "brilliant" career, a "shining" pile of gold, a great and "blinding" intelligence! All those who follow this false light will not join the eternal Light, which is God: they will, on the contrary, be thrown into the light of the eternal fire of Hell!


" «But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment; and he said to him, "Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?" And he was speechless. Then the king said to the attendants, "Bind him hand and foot, and cast him into the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth." For many are called, but few are chosen.» "


This sentence is tragic: "For many are called, but few are chosen." What does this really mean? Let us think about it. Who are the men who are favored by chance in their life? Are they numerous, or few? Let us be impartial, and say that one man in two has luck in his life. But, among those who have luck, does that luck last them all their life, or does it last only for a certain time? Again, let us be impartial and say that, among those who have luck, one man in two has luck throughout his entire life. So, in the end, this would mean that one man in four has luck throughout his whole life. Is this many or few?


This proportion of "one in two" is something Jesus mentioned: "So will be the coming of the Son of man. Then two men will be in the field; one is taken and one is left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one is taken and one is left." (Mt. 24:39-41) In short, one may hold the opinion that, for any two men, one will say "yes" to God, and the other "no"; but, of any two men who begin by saying "yes" to God, only one will continue to say "yes" to God until the end of his life... One in four... This is a simple proportion, completely relative, but which confirms the sentence of the Lord: "Many are called, but few are chosen." (Mt. 22:14)


May the Most Blessed Virgin Mary teach us to always say "yes" to God! The Holy Spirit witnessed her virginal "yes" on the day of the Incarnation of the Word: may this Spirit of Love lead us to the Heart of Jesus in order that we might find there strength and consolation all the days of our life!




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