Reflections 24th September 2017

A Reflection for the Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Mt: 20:1-16A (  )

Jesus asked them if they never read in the Scriptures:

The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone;

by the Lord has this been done, and it is wonderful in our eyes. 

Many conversations about buildings constructed in Ireland during the ‘Celtic Tiger’ boom years were centred about the cornerstone (foundation). A criticism of many builds of that era was that they didn’t give time for the foundation to set properly, leaving the rest of the build unstable as a result.  Foundation or rootedness is fundamental no matter what aspect of life we are exploring.

Without foundations or roots in our lives we will struggle to uncover the fullness of life that Jesus invites us all to live. In today’s Gospel, the labourers want the reward of the vineyard for their needs alone. They refused the invitation of collaboration and mutual sharing of the produce and instead they sought power, egoism and individualism. The fruits of refusal and disconnection from the vineyard’s foundation are experienced in this parable as violence and death rather than life and celebration. It is quite disturbing.

In many ways, this gospel reflects the message of Pope Francis and his call to re-connect to the cry of the earth and those marginalised in our world. Today through our TV screens, mobile phones or computers we see that many parts of our global community are experiencing famine, war or global warming. Often these realties have no impact on us as we have become apathetic to death and suffering. 

When I reflect on this experience of apathy, I wonder how separated we have become from our rootedness in God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Mr. Ronan Barry – Ronan works with the Identity, Faith & Mission Office attached to Spiritan schools in Ireland. His areas of involvement in the schools include engagement with school charities, ethos development, pastoral care, religious education and sacramental preparation.