The Gospel reading from the Mass for Wednesday of the 29th Week of Ordinary Time is Luke 12:39-48.

Having urged His men to be watchmen who are on guard, Christ now warns priests and other leaders of their heavy responsibility and accountability for trustfully watching over and shepherding the Church.

After again telling men to be continually vigilant (throughout the night) against attacks of the Evil One (thieves), Peter, growing in his leadership, perceives that Christ’s parable has an implication for His Apostles and asks for clarification. In response, in the Parable of the Faithful or Unfaithful Slave, Christ emphasizes the need for men to be watchful, to be morally upright at all times and to do the work that Christ has given them to do. Christ (the Master or Lord) will bless and reward those good men/fathers/priests (servants) who diligently care for their families/communities/Church (household Christ has given them) and give their families/communities/Church both bodily and spiritual nourishment (food). Men who do Christ’s will with faith and prudence will be rewarded richly in Heaven (blessing/set him over all his possessions).

In contrast to the “good man”, evil men/fathers/priests (wicked servants) ignore Christ (Master/Lord is delayed) abuse (beat) their families/communities/Church (fellow servants) and engage in immorality (eat and drink with the drunkards). Christ (Master/Lord) will come unexpectedly (unexpected day/time), judge and send the evil men to Hell (punish severely; in Greek, dichotomew, literally, “cut him in two”). Other sinners (those who fail to carry out Christ’s will or do not know it) will still be punished, but less severely (severe beating, light beating).

Awed by Jesus ChristSon of Man, Christ reveals that He will come again. Divine King, Christ proclaims that He is “Lord” and “Master.” Divine Teacher, Christ reveals the kinds of moral behaviors He expects of disciples and offers parables that connect with men. Divine Judge, Christ confirms some of the criteria by which He judges men and the reality of great rewards and severe punishments.

Being a Heroic Catholic Man

1)  In this parable, Christ’s words recorded in Greek literally mean, “to cut him in two” in reference to the punishment for evil men. Be awed (“to inspire fear or  dread”) by Christ’s hatred of sin.

2) In contrast to the often promoted false Christ who holds no one accountable for sin and punishes no one, Christ purposefully describes signifiant rewards and punishments for faithful and unfaithful slaves. Refresh your understanding of the the Four Last Things (Death, Judgment, Heaven and Hell – CCC 1006-1037) and pray for Christ to help you long for Heaven and continue to grow towards sainthood.

3) While good men actively do God’s will and are rewarded and evil men do evil and are condemned (cut into pieces), those who simply fail to do God’s will are also punished (severely or lightly beaten). Refresh your understanding of the Sins of Omission (CCC 1853, 2277, 2284, 2326) and pray for Christ to diligently do the work He has given you to do.

Spiritual Practices – Include in Today’s Prayers

Sacred Mystery of Rosary – The Glorious Mysteries

Daily Devotion – Saint Joseph

Virtue of the Day – Temperance

Corporal Work of Mercy – To visit the imprisoned

Spiritual Work of Mercy – To comfort the sorrowful