Reflection for 28th Sunday of Year

My dear Friends

I hope you have had a blessed week!

There are multiple facets to the readings of this Sunday...and, I must confess, I have never felt very comfortable with today’s gospel! It is the story of the King’s sending invitations to his son’s wedding feast. The invitations are declined by the invitees. The King then sends his servants to re-issue the invitations. This time, the invitations are not only rejected, but his servants are abused, beaten up and some killed. As I am sure you remember, his servants then walk the streets, inviting all to the banquet!

Until then, the King had my sympathies. However, at the banquet, the King discovers

some poor guy not following the correct ‘dress code’. In anger, the King slings the poor guy out of the banquet into the darkness where there was ‘weeping and grinding of teeth’. I have often felt that the poor guy got a raw deal...and with that kind of attitude, this possibly explained why the King’s invitations were declined! I would be, however, quite wrong in my conclusions and interpretation!

St. Paul’s words put the metaphors and symbols of today’s gospel into context. As the Jesuit, Fr. John Kavanaugh comments: Paul wrote in his letter to the Galatians that if we are baptised in Christ, we must be clothed in him (emphasis mine!). Christ is the only adequate banquet garment. And it is his love, as we read in the Letter to the Colossians, that must be the clothing to complete and unify all others we wear. Yes, every child of the earth is called to the feast. But if any of us actually get there, it will only be because we are ‘all decked out’ with Christ, in God’. I think, the cloth, which clothes us with Christ, is woven from the loving, compassionate and healing threads, drawn from our hearts, when they fused in love with God.

In life’s journeys, it is so easy, and tempting, to cloth ourselves in/with power, greed, and ambition gained through other people’s pain, oppression and exploitation! The character of Cruella de Vil, from the movie 101 Dalmations, comes to mind! I guess the bottom line, and the challenge of today’s gospel, is: each day, am I clothing myself with Christ? Are the threads of the garment I wear in my daily life, woven from the threads of Love, Compassion, Justice, Healing, Hope, Joy, and Forgiveness, drawn from the heart of God. This is the choice we make each day.

Remember me as loving you, 

Fr. Antony

The parish is part of the Diocese of Portsmouth. Portsmouth Roman Catholic Diocesan Trust registered charity 246871.

© 2019• Immaculate Conception Church, Portswood, Southampton

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