A Message from Fr. Jay
In 1962, President Kennedy hosted a dinner for all Nobel Prize laureates at the White House. William Faulkner, a novelist who was awarded the prize for American literature, was also invited. He declined the invitation with the comment: “Why, that’s a hundred miles away…that’s a long way to go just to eat.” In a democratic world it is so easy to say something like that!
This week, the first reading and the Gospel speak about banquets. We all love banquets. Sometimes when I go to classy restaurants (only by invitation though…and I am always open for invitation!) I enjoy not only the food, but the ambience and soft music, the arrangements of the tables and silverware, and creative presentation of the food.
However, I am more like St. Paul in the second reading. I have known by experience what poverty and the life of abundance entail. Whether poverty or richness, all should lead to the glory of God our Father!
In the Gospel, we find declining an invitation brings disaster. An invitation from a King for his son’s wedding feast means demanding recognition and loyalty. Those invited are possibly from noble elites. They give a few silly reasons to decline and the worst scenario of killing the King’s servants takes place, therefore facing severe consequences.
As promised, God has provided the banquet feast to us all by sending His own Son as food. We receive that Food in the form of Scripture and Holy Eucharist. We are the chosen people that He brought in for the wedding feast. He serves us the rich food of salvation. The Holy Eucharist as Word made Flesh brings strength and energy to our spiritual lives. Jesus said, “My meal is to do the will of the one who sent me and finish his work.” (John 4:34) To do His will is our mandate, too.
Let us respect His invitation and nourish our spiritual lives.
Fr. Jay Raju