Over the years, this Gospel reading has been an ever-evolving lesson for me. In its literal sense, I have struggled with the master’s harsh criticism of the third’s handling of money. In turn, I find myself critical of the master, for his treatment of this poor servant—uncompassionate and lacking understanding. I wonder if my reaction is likely because I might have acted similarly. Thus, each time I read it, I feel an initial reaction of disdain, but know I must take a step back and re-examine how Christ is challenging me in this parable.
In my ministry here at the parish, I have found myself speaking a lot about the Holy Spirit lately—with our RCIA Inquirers, our Confirmation students, and with parents at Sacramental Prep meetings. So when I read today’s readings, I got excited! Here’s another opportunity to talk about the Holy Spirit!
“Um, Rachel… the Holy Spirit?? Where do you see the Holy Spirit in today’s readings? The Spirit never gets mentioned by name in any of these passages!” I know it doesn’t seem like the Spirit’s in there at first glance, but let’s take a look!
Children's Christmas Nativity
The Nativity at the 4:00 p.m. Christmas Eve Mass has always been a festive, joyful occasion for Saint Clement families. The Christmas Nativity is fun for the children and gives them a sense of leadership and confidence. Most importantly it enhances their understanding of the meaning of the Christmas Scriptures and creates memories for your family and the parish community.
Once a month parishioners share personal stories of how they have connected with Saint Clement and actively live a stewardship life through prayer, service, and giving. This week we hear from Alyse Fischer:
I find such satisfaction in hearing Jesus’ rant against the scribes and the Pharisees in today’s Gospel as he warns the crowds and disciples not to follow in their footsteps:
One of the thoughts that came to me while reading the three readings for this weekend, was what if every Catholic started a social media campaign posting and tweeting sentences from each reading?
“You shall not molest or oppress an alien.”
“You shall not wrong any widow or orphan.”
“You became a model for all the believers.”
“You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.”
“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
We're all pretty familiar with today’s Gospel passage. There a lot of sub-plots and meanings underlying the background of the coinage at the time of Jesus. Looking at the most obvious, the Herodians once again were trying to put Jesus in a compromising situation. They thought because of the head of the emperor on the coin Jesus would say it wasn’t acceptable for him to take the side of the Zealots who were considered terrorists and radicals, those who violently opposed the Romans.
Come, gather ‘round this table, all you from far and near.
Gather ’round this table, for all are welcome here.
— Marty Haugen “Gather ‘Round This Table”
Have you ever been invited to a wedding but really didn’t want to go? Maybe you had a rift with someone in the wedding party, or you were expected to purchase a pricey gift? Or perhaps you didn’t know the couple that well, or you just didn’t want to attend? Whatever the reason, I suspect that many of us have been in the position of declining a wedding invitation.