在今天的比喻裡 , 家主打發自己的兒子到園戶那裡去 , 甚至他所打發的僕人都被凶惡的園戶們鞭打了 , 或殺死了˙家主為什麼這樣做呢? 難道他沒有想到園戶們也會一樣的鞭打或殺死他的兒子嗎? 根據比喻 , 家主以為園戶們並不會這樣做 , 而會敬重他的兒子˙不過家主錯了˙園戶們殺死了他的兒子 , 因為他們以為殺掉了家主的兒子以後 , 他們就能得到他的產業 , 就是葡萄園˙當耶穌告訴司祭長和民間長老們這個比喻的時候 , 祂要他們知道家主是代表天父 , 兒子是代表自己 , 僕人是代表先知們 , 以及凶惡的園戶們就是他們˙司祭長和民間長老們不只是不聽先知們的話 , 先知們都被司祭長和民間長老們鞭打或殺死了˙同時 , 耶穌告訴他們 , 祂也會被他們鞭打和殺掉˙
天父跟比喻裡的家主有一點不一樣 , 就是天父完全都知道的 , 連祂自己的兒子 , 耶穌基督 , 會被司祭長和民間長老們鞭打和殺掉˙那麼 , 祂為什麼還要派兒子去呢? 原因表明出天父對人類偉大的愛 , 使祂獨生子犧牲了自己的生命˙天主是一位很慈愛的天主˙不過 , 我們不要以為我們所有的罪過就永遠不會受審判˙比喻指出天主是一位非常有耐心和寬恕心的天主 ˙但是 , 那些不願意報答給天主祂所應得的好果實的 , 最後會受到天主的審判˙
今天的比喻不只是警告我們 , 而且也指導我們一位基督徒的生活是應該怎樣的˙如果我們要跟隨基督的話 , 我們應該報答給天主好的果實 : 就是在我們的思 , 言和行為當中有一個潔淨的生活 ; 寬恕和愛我們的仇人 ; 以及對待窮人和有需要的人有憐憫心˙有時候 , 問題是我們只是園戶們 , 不過我們的行動好像是家主的行動 : 在我們的生活中 , 我們時常做我們喜愛的事 , 甚至這些事違反耶穌與教會的教導˙如果一個人接受了別人的完全的愛 , 他就有責任繳納出好的果實˙天主給了我們祂完全的愛 , 不過如果我們不接受祂的愛 , 或者濫用祂的愛 , 一定會有悲劇的結果˙今天的福音告訴我們天主召叫我們作祂葡萄園的新園戶˙天主需要新的園戶的招牌還在˙天主很慷慨地叫我們來祂的葡萄園工作˙做天主的新園戶以及把好的果實報答給天主是一個很大的特權!
27th Sunday in Ordinary Time
In today’s parable, the landowner sent his own son to the vineyard even after every servant that he previously sent was either mistreated or killed by the evil tenants. Why did the landowner do this? Didn’t it ever occur to him that the tenants would do the same thing to his son? According to the parable, the landowner thought that the tenants would treat his son differently and that they would respect him. But he was mistaken. The tenants killed the landowner’s son, thinking that they will get to keep the vineyard for themselves. When Jesus told this parable, the landowner was meant to be His Father in heaven, the son was Himself, the servants were the prophets before Christ, and the tenants were the chief priests and elders. Not only did the chief priests and elders not listen to the prophets, they mistreated and killed the prophets. In the same way, Jesus is telling the chief priests and elders that He too will be mistreated and killed by them.
The heavenly Father is not like the parable’s landowner in the sense that God who knows everything, knew what would happen to His own Son. So why did He still send His beloved Son to the vineyard? The reason brings to light the shocking truth of God’s love for mankind: a love that spells out the death of His only Son. However, let us not make the mistake of convincing ourselves that because He is a loving God, He will never make us accountable for our sins. The point of the parable is that while God has incredible patience and forgiveness, He will finally deal justly with those who stubbornly refuse to give Him back the fruit He is entitled to.
The parable is not only a warning, but a guide for what a Christian’s life should be. As followers of Jesus Christ, we should give good fruit back to God: a life of purity in thought, word and deed; forgiveness and love of our enemies; compassion for the poor and needy. Sometimes the problem is that we, who are tenants of God’s vineyard, act as if we are the owners: we live a life wherein we do as we please, even when it is against the teachings of Christ and the Church. When total love is received by a person, it becomes the duty of that person to produce bountiful fruit. God gave us that total love. But if that love is refused or abused, the result is tragic. The Gospel calls us to think of ourselves as the new tenants in God’s vineyard. God’s sign is still out: Vineyard for rent. The terms are as generous as they can be. What a great privilege for us to be tenants in God’s vineyard and to bring Him His fruits!
The Holy Name of Jesus Chinese Catholic Mission cordially invites you to join us for the Dedication Mass of our church on November 19th, 2017 with Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory as principal celebrant. Our Eucharistic Celebration starts at 10:30 a.m. followed by a reception.
Our Garage Sale last Spring and Fall have been very successful, thanks to your generosity and hard work. Our next Garage Sale will be scheduled next year in the Spring and Fall. Due to the limited storage space in our church, please accumulate your donations at home until an announcement has been made to bring them to the church. However, you may bring non-garage sale items which can be sold at our Gift Shop at any time. All donated items must be in sale-able condition. Thank you!