Fr Hugh’s Homily for 27th Sunday
Bilbo Baggins, an old hobbit at the start of The Fellowship of the Ring, gazes at the ring and says:’ It’s mine, all mine, my precious.’ His greed for the ring was caught from Gollum, (I won a prize for my drawing of Gollum many years ago, which was nothing like Gollum in the film,), Bilbo’s greed was contagious as sin often is. In the parable today I wonder who first thought up the idea of killing the landlord’s servants, who instigated it, and then persuaded the others, and once they were all involved there seemed to be no way out but to go for the son too. From greed to murder, the greatest of crimes/sins, in easy steps. ‘We want the vineyard for ourselves.’ Jesus of course is talking to the Chief priests and the elders, and in the parable the vineyard is Israel, (and more widely creation), that God has built, provided for and then protected from outside threats too. But the real threat comes from within (in which there is a message for us too.) The cancer of tenants’ greed eats away at the peace of the vineyard. The servants are the prophets, whose then leads to the death of the Son, God’s Son. But where the message changes from an ordinary tale is that it is the weakest of all in the story, the dead Son, who then overturns the greed and murder of the tenants, who becomes the corner-stone……..
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