Sunday Reflections

29th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A)

BILINGUAL REFLECTIONS FOR SUNDAY

29th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) Mtt. 22:15-21 – Oct 22, 2017

Repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God

There are some people who answer to a question with another question, or do not give a direct answer. Once I asked a friend of mine, who used to respond in that way, “How come you always answer a question with another question?” And then he asked me, “Why do you say that?” To another, I asked, “How are you?” Then she said; “What´s up?” In any case, that is not an answer.

Jesus is the focus of hatred in today's Gospel. The Pharisees, nationalists, and the Herodians, sympathizers with Rome, are enemies, but now join in an effort to entrap Jesus. When they ask Jesus if “Is it lawful to pay the census tax to Caesar or not?” this is a no-win question.Knowing their malice, he does not answer with a simple yes or no. He knows their question is not asked out of sincerity or the willingness to know the truth. If he would answer “yes, it is lawful” he would be accused of betraying his Jewish community. But if he had answered “no,” he would be in trouble with the Romans. Instead, to their question he asks them whose image and inscription were in the coin they used to pay the census tax. When they say, “Caesar´s,” then he tells them: “Repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God “As a good teacher, he teaches them to reach their own conclusion and learn the lesson.

28th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A)

BILINGUAL REFLECTIONS FOR SUNDAY

28th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) Mt. 22: 1-14 – Oct 15, 2017

The kingdom of heaven may be likened to a King who gave a wedding feast for his son

I feel sorry for those who have to refrain from some delicious food or wines, especially for reasons of health or aesthetics, or just because they want to ignore the invitation and the purpose of the celebration. At least, the literal sense of the first reading and the Gospel today invites us to enjoy a tremendous party with a free meal and drinks. The invitation of the prophet Isaiah is to accept “a feast of rich food and choice wines,” and the invitation of Jesus´ banquet is, “Come, I have prepared my banquet.” The guests are invited to enjoy a first class five star banquet with this menu: "juicy rich food and pure choice wines." How can people refuse an invitation to what will be so a great party?

26th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A)

BILINGUAL REFLECTIONS FOR SUNDAY

26th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) Mt. 21: 28-32 – Oct 01, 2017

When someone turns from the wickedness he has committed, and does what is right and just, he shall preserve his life" “´Son, go out and work in the vineyard today.´ He said, ´I will not,´ but afterwards he changed his mind and went. “

Oscar Wilde, the famous Irish writer, wrote a novel titled "The Picture of Dorian Gray." In the novel, Dorian Gray is a handsome young man who envies his own portrait because it will never grow old. He makes an agreement with the Devil, he sells his own soul to the Devil, but he will never change, as his portrait will. Dorian retains his youth and beauty even though he undertakes a dissolute and sinful life. At the end he encounters the portrait. While Dorian remained beautiful, his portrait had changed. Dorian sees the extremely ugly face and understands that it represents his true inner self. He attacks the painting with a knife. When people hear the noise, they come running and discover the portrait restored to its original beauty. Next to the portrait they see the body of an old man, horribly disfigured, too horrible to see. We may think that Oscar Wilde learned a lesson from his own novel. His life is an image of Dorian Gray. He made a death bed conversion and received the sacrament of confession just before he died.

27th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A)

BILINGUAL REFLECTIONS FOR SUNDAY

27th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) Mt. 21: 33-43 – October 08, 2017

“Finally, he sent his own son to them, thinking, ´They will respect my son. (…) But the tenants killed him“


One of the Aesop´s fables tells the story of a dog that is carrying a stolen bone in his mouth. He crosses a bridge over a stream. He looks at his own reflection on the water. He takes it for a second dog with a bigger bone. He opens his mouth to bark at the “other” and in doing so drops what he was carrying. His own bone falls to the stream's bottom. He ends up with no bone. The story´s moral is that, the one who covets something loses all. With the tenants of today's parable something similar happens, because of greed, they lost their jobs.

We hear from the beginning of the parable that Jesus addresses it to the chief priests and elders of the people. Jesus uses the vineyard image of Isaiah 5:1-7, and he tells the story of a landowner who after planting a vineyard with so much care and love, he leases it to tenants, and goes on a journey. At harvest time, when he sends servants to the tenants to obtain his produce, the tenants maltreat and even kill some of his servants. The landowner finally sends his son, thinking that they will respect him. The evil tenants kill the son, hoping thereby to acquire his inheritance.

25th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A)

BILINGUAL REFLECTIONS FOR SUNDAY

25th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) Mt. 20: 1-16 - Sep 24, 2017

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord“.

In our society we usually discuss that there should be equal opportunities in jobs, for example, for men and women, who do, the same work, and both have the same qualifications; and the concern is that they should receive the same salary. In the parable we hear today, about the landowner who paid all workers the same wage, although they had not worked the same amount of time, we might think that he is either unjust or too generous. In this very unexpected situation, the first thing we have to think is that the owner was not unjust, since from the beginning, owner and workers agreed to accept the standard daily basic wage. And yet this parable exclusive of Matthew may be, among the forty parables of Jesus, one of the most puzzled.

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