Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A Mt 25, 14-30

 Christian is not a “maintenance worker”, but an active disciple.  The Gospel passage for next Sunday (Mt 25, 14-30) brings Jesus’ parable about the master who entrusted his servants with talents. At first glance, perhaps paradoxically, the servant, who faithfully tried to preserve the entrusted talent, was severely punished by the master. The listener is thus again invited to think, with consequences for his own life, in what the servant from the parable made a mistake and why the remaining two servants received praise. Financial environment To avoid misunderstanding, the Greek word “talanton” = “talent” is not an expression of “talent, skill”, but was the largest Greek monetary and weight unit. 1 talent represented 6000 denars and roughly 34 to 41 kilograms. If we consider that an ordinary worker earned 1 denarius in one day’s work, then the entrusted amount of money was not small at all, even in the case of the last servant, to whom the master entrusted “only” 1 talent. In his case, it was converted to earnings for 6,000 days of work, i.e. after deducting the holidays, it was 20 years of work. So the analogy comes from the financial environment. The first two servants multiplied the amount of money entrusted to them. This is expressed by the expressions “ergázomai” = “trade”, “kerdáino” = “get”, “trapezítes” = “money changer”, “tókos” = “interest”. In today’s eyes, the first two servants took a big risk, because in the case of a wrong investment, they would lose everything. If it was their money, then we say, let them do what they want with it. But the money was entrusted to them. They shouldn’t have taken such a gamble. What if it didn’t work out for them? The third servant took a “conservative” approach to managing finances. After all, it was other people’s money, so he was careful. He did not suffer a loss and returned the entrusted sum of money to the master. So he was careful and prudent. However, the final assessment turns everything upside down. The first and second servants are praised as the “faithful and good servant,” while the third as the “bad and lazy servant.” Did we miss something? According to ability The parable states that the amount of money entrusted corresponded to the ability of each servant. That is, none of them received something that was beyond his strength. The third servant erred because he did nothing. He did not trade, nor did he leave it to others who could trade with a profit (money changer). A Christian is not one who resigns and infests the whole world with talk that nothing can be done and the only thing left is to retreat into the shell of our own comfort and wait. Whoever does this has not understood the will of the Lord at all. Instead of spending energy looking for arguments about how bad the world is, how everyone has conspired against us, let’s focus on what we can do at the moment. The Lord will not ask us about others, but about what we did.

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