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Today's Gospel + short theological explanation

Wednesday of the Twentieth Week in Ordinary Time

Gospel text (Mt 20,1-16): Jesus said to his disciples, «This story throws light on the kingdom of heaven. A landowner went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard. He agreed to pay the workers a salary of a silver coin for the day, and sent them to his vineyard. He went out again at about nine in the morning, and seeing others idle in the square, he said to them: ‘You, too, go to my vineyard and I will pay you what is just’ (…).

»When evening came, (…) when it was the turn of the first, they thought they would receive more. But they, too, received a denarius each. So, on receiving it, they began to grumble against the landowner. They said: ‘These last hardly worked an hour, yet you have treated them the same as us who have endured the day’s burden and heat’ (…)».

"Spiritual unemployment" (Parable of the unemployed vine growers)

EDITORIAL TEAM evangeli.net (based on texts by Benedict XVI) (Città del Vaticano, Vatican)

Today, when we ask ourselves, Christianity, “what for”? we are doing exactly what those vine growers did. When they realized they could obtain the salary of a denarius much more easily (by working less hours), they could not understand why they had been working all day long. But on what were they basing their conviction that it was much more comfortable being idle than working?

This parable was not transmitted for workers of another time, but for us, who take for granted that "spiritual unemployment" —a life without faith and prayer— is more pleasant than spiritual service. But on what are we basing ourselves? We look at the effort involved in the daily Christian life, while forgetting that faith is not only a load that oppresses us, but at the same time, a guiding light...

—O Jesus, make me forget "my load" and let me think of the load others have, so I can help them.