Our Lady of Pompeii Communities

Our Lady of Pompeii Shrine Church altar

Message from Father Mark

We live in a busy world where technology advancements and global economy continue to form a significant reputation for consistently producing results in various disciplines. The culture of media, for instance, reflects the enormity of accomplishments in reaching out to people across the world. This shows dynamism in legendary proportion that can be a way to deliver the best possible messages. As we bring back to our senses some memories of the past, we cannot help but be drawn to think about how God leads us in our lives.

We constantly search for meaning that allows us to see anew what patterns in our lives will probably need conversion. Like the visions of life perceived in Gilgamesh and the Old Testament, there’s an ultimate control over human life that is made by nonhuman forces. In the Old Testament, however, there is only one such divine figure; in Gilgamesh, as in the Greek epics, there are legions of controlling figures. But the principle is the same: our lives are not in our own hands. I think it is also the same thing like in today’s parable where the landowner who represents God rewards his laborers not according to human standards – the way we think, but, according to his own divine will.

Human justice mandates that workers be paid according to the number of hours of work rendered. But Jesus this time asks us to look beyond and take it from the divine perspective. It’s like saying: “God writes straight with crooked lines,” and some of these crooked lines are our own lives and witness. They are punctuated with mysteries that at times can hardly be explained. We see here the reaction of the Pharisees bewildered by the image of God that Jesus reveals in his parable. God is free to call anyone to his kingdom. He has his own ways and time (kairos).

His justice is tempered by mercy, compassion, and generosity. Perhaps we need to remember that Jesus even looks for the lost sheep, the sinners, the outcasts, the outsiders, and the dregs of society.

Fr Mark Escobar, c.s.

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