We have arrived at the penultimate weekend to the end of the liturgical year. Next weekend shall be the Solemnity of our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, and that my friends, will bring us to the end of the liturgical “Year A.” The season of Advent will then begin a new liturgical year. At the end of every calendar year, we often take stock of most aspects of our lives. We take a look at how we are doing financially, many do a comprehensive medical examination to find out where they are healthwise, and most families come together not only to celebrate but to also dialogue on the state of their relationship with one another in the family. The Church, God’s great family where Jesus is the head and we are the body, invites us to effect an introspection, a personal inquiry into how we have used, failed to use, or misused the talents invested in each of us by God’s benevolence.
The Gospel passage focuses on the coming of the Lord in judgment, whether that judgment be the final (end of time) or the particular (at our own death). Jesus tells the parable of an obviously extremely wealthy man who, before embarking on a journey, distributed his possessions to his servants. To one he gave five talents, to another he gave two talents, and to a third servant he gave a single talent. Now, a talent was an extremely huge amount of wealth to be entrusted into the care of servants. A day’s wage in that era was a denarius (Matthew 20:8-9), one example of the estimated value of a talent is eighty pounds of silver which had the equivalent value of six thousand denarii. This would mean that the master invested in the servant who got five talents, an equivalent of a whopping eighty-three years wages. Jesus intended to highlight how extravagantly generous God is with His blessings on all His children. Our blessings are different too. You just need to count your blessings and it will surprise you what the Lord has done
According to Jesus, when the master left, the first and second servants invested their given talents and doubled their allocations. The third servant, a slothful fellow who was suspicious of his master’s motives, buried the talent allotted to him in the ground and waited for his master’s return. The master returned and justly demanded an account of how his estate was handled. The first two servants promptly produced the capital and profit made from their investments and were praised and rewarded accordingly by their elated master. The third servant not only proved his sloth, he was also unfortunately rude. This irked his master who ordered for his talent to be forcefully retrieved and handed over to the servant who made ten talents out of the five that were allotted to him.
Clearly, Jesus wanted to impress on His Disciples the truth that God has generously allotted to each person what we are and have in trust, and that a day will come when each of us would be invited to offer an account of how we have used God’s investments in us. Those who have cooperated with God’s grace and have thrived in righteousness will be called to an eternal reward, while those who have lived a life of excuses, slothfully wasting God’s resources, distrusting God’s mercies, misinterpreting God’s patience for license to explore inordinate liberties and leaving on their trail tales of bitterness and hatred, will be called to eternal damnation. The Holy Church invites us, as the year draws to its end, to effect an introspection that would help us determine where we stand with God’s gratuitous benevolence.
“Tempus fugit, memento mori” (Times fl y, remember death) is the motto of the Knights of Columbus; this should be our catalyst for an end-of year-reflection. May God teach us to number our days that we may gain wisdom of heart (Psalm 90:12).
Please be kind and may God bless you.
Fr. ManassehBACK TO LIST