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Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time
Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time Homily Transcript
>>Beautiful parable here.
I tell the people at St. Juliana parish, of which I’m the pastor, whenever you hear a parable two things should come to mind- the church and yourself. The parables, you see, are descriptions of the kingdom of God. The kingdom of God is both the church out there externally, it’s also within. We all have the kingdom of God within our souls.
So, Christ describing through the parables both the church and our souls. So here we have this classic parable of the vineyard. Now, it’s an image first of Christ and God’s relationship to humanity.
So, of course the vineyard is creation- the nation of Israel that God has created. Beautiful wine press, puts a hedge around it and the inhabitants of Israel rebel against God the Father. Okay?
So this is Adam and Eve and the decedents. And, read all the Old Testament. You get the story of God’s people rebelling against him. So what does God do? He sends his servants to try and get the vineyard back in right order- these would be the prophets that are rejected and killed. He sends finally his son, Jesus Christ. And what, of course, happens to Christ- he’s taken, literally, outside the walls of Jerusalem and he’s crucified. Okay?
So, it’s a description of humanity. It’s also a description, like I said, of the church. So sometimes the church is rebellious. Right? We’re not always perfect. We have sinners and saints within us. So, God sends Jesus to us, ah, to maybe bring us to the right path. Put us on the right path.
We often see this in the saints throughout the history of the church. God raises up beautiful souls, holy men and women to bring the church back to right order. Sometimes we don’t listen to the saints, sometimes we even kill them. But God doesn’t give up on us. Right? And it’s in our sinfulness, in our rejection that God chose his fidelity and his mercy. Okay? So, that’s the church then.
How ‘bout us? Right? So, our souls are this beautiful vineyard that God has created. Okay? Sometimes though, we rebel against the Lord. He sends us Jesus and we just don’t want to listen to him.
St. Paul speaks of anxiety in our second reading. Often times, anxiety can come up in our hearts when a sin or something heavy creeps into that vineyard and it disturbs us. But anxiety, disturbance, heaviness doesn’t have to have the last word. Right?
St. Paul says: look if you have anxiety, any sort of feeling, give that to the Father. And so that’s what we’re encouraged in the parable today. If we do have a sin or some unwanted tenant in our vineyard, something that’s causing us anxiety- don’t panic, pray. Offer that to Jesus Christ. Lift to him your heaviness, anything that’s bothering you. He will dispel it and he’ll make that beautiful vineyard of your soul once again produce delicious grapes.
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