The Catholic Calendar for Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Tuesday of the Third Week of Advent

Scripture from today’s Liturgy of the Word:
Zephaniah 3:1-2, 9-13
Psalm 34:2-3, 6-7, 17-18, 19 and 23
Matthew 21:28-32

A reflection on today’s Sacred Scripture:

I will not! (Matthew 21:29)
 
Against his father’s wishes, the “first son” refused to go out and work in the vineyard, but later changed his mind and went.
 
The “second son” was seemingly obedient to his father’s demand, but despite his “Yes, sir” (Matthew 21:30), never went.
 
Jesus asks the question, “Which of the two did his father’s will?”
 
We know the correct answer is the “first son,” but Jesus’ parable also begs the question, what made him change his mind? No doubt his heart was moved, but we don’t know why. Was it by someone’s example of extraordinary faith in a vineyard so wide and in need of workers? Let’s presume so, and recognize that our love for others is our most crucial witness to the world!
 
And what’s at stake if we do nothing? Words will never be enough to enter God’s Kingdom, no matter how good our intentions. Jesus’ parables always teach us the same lesson: our action is required.
 
Then we ourselves must go into the vineyard and work hard to encourage our Father’s “first sons,” that they might be quick to change their minds and believe, and to rouse our Father’s “second sons” to be faithful to their commitments by acting on them.

– Elizabeth A. Tichvon | elizabethtichvon@comcast.net

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