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32nd Sunday in Ordinary tme Mt

Catholic Homilies
November 10th, 2002

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32nd Sunday in Ordinary time Mt 25/1-13


As has been observed before in these notes parables have only one point. Attempts to interpret the details of a parable so that it becomes an allegory tend to distract from that point (though allegories have been with us almost as along as there have been parables). This story is not about wedding customs or about charity or even about staying awake at night. Rather it is about being ready when Jesus comes, either in some one who needs our help, or at the time of death, or at the end of time. It is one of the parables of urgency, a parable which urges us not to waste the opportunities that are offered us, a parable which in the terms of the beer ad reminds us that we only go around once and that we ought not to pass up our chances

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Once upon a time, class of high school juniors were preparing to take the tests that would determine which college might be interested in having them as its students. The brightest student in the class didn’t worry about their chances. One group of these class "stars," convinced that they could ace anything, planned to go partying the night before the exams. Another group, fairly sure they could do well on the tests, still decided to take it easy and get a good night’s sleep the night before the test. The others in the class, who wanted to get into a good college, had studied for months before the exam and most of them did not join the partying crowd. When the test results were announced, many in this latter group did as well as the partying crowd, most of whom did not do their very best and some of whom did not qualify for admittance to the colleges they were sure would be eager to have them in their student body. The lamps of their minds did not function as well as they had hoped.

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The lamps of their minds did not function as well as they had hoped

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