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Sunday Mass Times in Blessington Parish
Blessington
Saturday Vigil 6.00pm
Sunday 10.00am 11.00am 7.30pm
Crosschapel
Sunday
12.00 noon
Manor Kilbride
Sunday
11.00am
Blessington Union of Parishes, Church of Ireland.
For information on Services for Blessington Union of Parishes please click here

Fr Kevin Lyon. Archdeacon of Glendalough.

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew     25:14-30


You have shown you can be faithful in small things, come and join in your master’s happiness.

Jesus spoke this parable to his disciples: “ The kingdom of heaven is like a man on his way abroad who summoned his servants and entrusted his property to them. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to a third is one; each in proportion to his ability. Then he set out.

The man who had received the five talents promptly went and traded with them and made five more. The man who had received two made two more in the same way. But the man who had received one went off and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. Now a long time after, the master of those servants came back and went through his accounts with them. The man who had received the five talents came forward bringing five more. “Sir,” he said “you entrusted me with five talents; here are five more that I have made.” His master said to him, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you have shown you can be faithful in small things, I will trust you with greater; come and join in your master’s happiness”.
Next the man with the two talents came forward. “Sir,” he said “you entrusted me with two talents; here are two more that I have made.” His master said to him, “Well done, good and faithful servant; you have shown you can be faithful in small things, I will trust you with greater; come and join in your master’s happiness”.
Last came forward the man who had the one talent. “Sir,” said he “I had heard you were a hard man, reaping where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered; so I was afraid, and I went off and hid your talent in the ground. Here it is; it was yours, you have it back.” But his master answered him, “You wicked and lazy servant! So you knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered? Well then, you should have deposited my money with the bankers, and on my return I would have recovered my capital with interest. So now, take the talent from him and give it to the man who has the five talents. For to everyone who has will be given more, and he will have more than enough; but from the man who has not, even what he has will be taken away. As for this good-for-nothing servant, throw him out into the dark, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth.”

The Gospel of the Lord.

DEPOSITING OUR TALENTS

 

A famous rugby coach once said to his buddies in the squad, ‘Don’t let what you can’t do, interfere with what you can do’.  It reminds me of a story I read about Booker Washington, a black American slave.  At the age of 16 he walked over 500 miles from his slave home to Hampton, Virginia.  When he got  there he was told that the classes were filled.  Undaunted, he took a job at the college doing menial jobs; sweeping floors and making beds.  He did these so well that the faculty found room for him as a student.  He worked his way up at the college and became a famous lecturer, professor and eventually founded a university.  I believe this story tells us that small jobs, done well, can lead to a top job. 

 

This brings us to today’s Gospel parable known as the ‘parable of the talents’ (Matt:25:14-30). It encourages us to make good use of our gifts of nature and grace, little or great. Jesus is speaking to us of his coming, on a day and at an hour that no one knows.  So, we must be alert, so as not to be taken by surprise at this event.  We have a task to accomplish in the meantime. Christians readily understand that Jesus is speaking of himself. We say in the Creed each Sunday at mass; ‘He ascended into heaven …. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead’.  Until that day dawns, Jesus has entrusted us, his disciples, with his goods. These ‘goods’ are mentioned in the Gospel and are referred to as talents, a monetary unit used to handle large sums. I saw some of these talents in the history museum in Athens and they reminded me of our old 56lb weights, only these were of silver – a very large sum indeed, worth about €100,000 in present day currency.  So the servants in the parable received invaluable capital according to each one’s capacity.  The parable does not say how the first two servants managed to invest their master’s capital. He congratulates them on the same terms and invites them into his joy. He praises them for having been faithful ‘in small matters’ and promises them ‘greater responsibilities’  In truth, we are no longer dealing with a human being who demands accounts from others, but with God, who bestows his infinite riches upon us who have faithfuly administered the portion of the capital entrusted to us.

 

The meaning of the parable makes us realise the extent of God’s gifts by the terrific punishment meted out to the third servant who simply buried his master’s money in the ground in order to hand it back intact when the master returned.  Contrary to his companions, he did not understand that he had to profitably invest his fortune – he lacked initiative. We might reproach such a master for his harshness and even more, his injustice. What right has anyone to punish such servants? However, everything changes when we speak about God and his servants. If we regard ourselves bound to God by a contract in human terms, if we regard religion as the strict fulfilling of a certain number of duties taken on through servile fear, we misunderstand who God is, we insult him and we declare ourselves unworthy of entering into joy. Jesus is speaking to us of his coming. On that day we will all be judged on what we have done. The time of the Lord’s absence is, for us, the time for active waiting. God wants us to behave in a responsible manner, to be enterprising and apply ourselves to what we are doing. He does not ask us to do great things, but to discharge the tasks assigned to us. The grace of God is not something inert, that can be buried in the soil or hidden under a mattress. ‘Take my grace out of its hiding place’ Jesus would say, ‘Make the best of the delay granted’.

Fr. Kevin Lyon
Archdeacon of Glendalough