“..listen you who trample the need, & try to suppress the poor people of the country..you who say “when will New Moon be over?”..when will Brexit be over?..”& Sabbath for us so we can market our wheat?” so that we can shop again on what used to be respected & celebrated as the Sabbath..but no longer.. the “us & them” the social & religious divide within the chosen people 2500yrs ago.. ..& so little has changed ..our prosperity & their poverty.. when was last time we met spoke & formed an ongoing prayerful relationship with someone who is food-poor..or an asylum seeker..or victim of domestic violence?
“..never will I forget a single thing they /us have done..” ; Lord have mercy “..never will I forget a single thing they/us have not done..” ; Christ have mercy “..we buy up the poor for money, & the needy for a pair of sandals” ..or a Nike sweat shirt.. ; Lord have mercy May Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins & bring us to everlasting life. Amen.
..in any dispute or breakdown in relationship there are always two sides; different & valid perspectives on same situation. Sadly it seems rich man in gospel dismisses his steward on heresay/ gossip / word on the street, with no opportunity for the steward to respond, to speak his truth, & to seek justice or clemency..so in self defence or seeking some redress for unfair & instant dismissal..perhaps if we read it with our divine spectacles on, even out of compassion for the victims of his master’s sharp practice as a “pay day lender”..the steward reforms, notice not cancels, the terms of agreement of his masters debtors..to gain traction with them for the imminent bad times when he will be in need of help/ favours?..or to help his fellow victims of oppression/exploitation to find some hope & respite in their prison of indebtedness. How many of us carry a cross of indebtedness to God?..for past mistakes/inappropriate behaviour/exploitation of our neighbour, be that neighbour is our closest loved one, a childhood friend, a respected work colleague, or the mother of eight in Korea who works 18hrs/day in sweat shop producing cheap clothes for Primark or Next, for you & I to buy & judge a bargain with the a smug tale to tell of “twice as much value & I paid half as much for it”.. would we ever think of boycotting Primark /Next, not to penalise them, but to encourage them to a prodigal son or daughter “coming to one’s senses” moment, a self realisation of where their poor practice & shallow code of behaviour leaves them, & by connection & infection, leaves us..a 24 sec confession on BBC News on Mon evg from our Government that an arm sales contract to supply Typhoon jets to Saudi Arabia hadn’t been terminated ..deemed ”an oversight”.. 24 secs as our ongoing coalition with Saudi Arabia still contributes to worlds worst humanitarian atrocity for generations “& so I tell you this; use money, tainted as it is, to win you friends, so that when it fails you” when Brexit fails you “they will welcome you into the tents of [prosperity]”..”the man who can be trusted in little things can be trusted in great”..what level of trust & confidence do you have at present in politics, in the Church?..& in me?..so ridiculously from head, or otherwise from heart, paying double the retail price & asking that the cost difference be sent to Korea to help the exploited..”here take your asking price & write double”..ridiculous or is it Christian stewardship at its finest ? ..“the master, our Master, praised the generous steward for his astuteness”..”no man can be the slave both of God & of money”..you & I enslaved by money in one of its many forms of exploitation..but imagine being enslaved by God? .. some of us are, in doing what we think we should be doing or avoiding, in a religion of force & fear, of compliance or punishment..& thereby missing out on the sacrament of the present moment..with its immediacy risk & spontaneity..its gift challenge invitation to face the truth & risk an uncertain yet grace filled future “let it be done to me according to your word” to risk coming home, a beloved prodigal son or daughter, empty handed yet full hearted..a gospel story, then & now, of a Robin Hood, a whistle blower, aware of what speaking out courageously convincingly & gracefully for the truth might well cost them.. them & us..an authentic disciple among us “a servant of the poor”..”come then, you rich, into his Church; its door is finally open to you; but it is open to you because of the poor, on the condition of your serving them. It is for the love of his children that Jesus permits entry to strangers. Behold the miracle of poverty! Yes, the rich were strangers; but service to the poor has naturalised them & serves to rid them of the contagion that lies in the midst of their riches. Therefore, you rich of this age ! seize as many grand titles as you please; you can wear them in the world; in the Church of Christ, you are only servants of the poor.”..did you notice term “naturalised”?..becoming full citizens, organic disciples..to be the real thing..the real full fat taste of the miracle of poverty..& here was you & I thinking the disease was “theirs”..when all the time the infection is ours.. [25th SunYr C; Lk 16;1-13]