Tuesday of the Thirty-First Week in Ordinary Time
Malvern Minute


Tuesday of the Thirty-First Week in Ordinary Time

November 5, 2019

Deacon Anthony J. Cincotta

Assistant Director for Retreat Ministry


Romans 12:5-16ab

Psalm 131

Luke 14:15-24

Let’s begin with a question.  Is it easy or difficult for you to make an excuse not to accept an invitation?  Think about the question for a few moments, throw in your “Catholic guilt,” and answer it.  I suspect that every one of us has given some sort of excuse to get out of doing something or going somewhere.  For example:

  • I have things to do.
  • Who will miss me if I don’t attend?
  • I won’t show up if he or she is there.

So why then did Jesus use this parable, a state dinner or royal banquet, to tell us about God’s Kingdom?  I believe one of the beautiful images of heaven in the scriptures is the royal banquet and wedding celebration given by the “King.”  We, in fact, have been invited to the most important banquet of all.  In the last book of the bible we are given an invitation to the wedding feast of the lamb and His Bride, the Church.  “The Spirit and the Bride say, Come!”  (Rev. 22-17.)  But Jesus’ parable takes an unexpected twist when the invited guests make excuses.  Why is this?  Invitations were probably sent out in advance of the banquet so how insulting for the invited guest’s to then refuse to come.  They made light of the King’s request because they put their own interests above his.

Jesus probes the reasons why people make excuses to God’s “great invitation.”  The first excuse allows the claims of one’s business to take precedence over God’s claim.  The second excuse allows other goods or possessions to come before God.  The third excuse puts home and family ahead of God.  Our answer to God is this; we serve Him best when we invite Him into our work and our homes and when we share our possessions with others.

The second part of the story focuses on those who had no claim on the king and who would never have considered getting an invitation.  The poor, crippled, blind and maimed represent the outcast of society.  Our Lord tells us there is even ample room at the feast of God for outsiders.

Question of the Day: Are you prepared to accept God’s invitation to the Kingdom of heaven?

Prayer: Lord God, You are the Creator of life.  Grant that I may live for You, in You, and by You, that I may be worthy of eternal life.



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