Called to Account
(25th Ordinary Sunday: Amos 8:4-7; 1 Timothy 2:1-8; Luke 16:1-13)
A steward is in charge of another person’s property. It is a position of trust. The main character of today’s gospel is a dishonest steward, whose master told him: “Prepare a full account of your stewardship.”
In the Church, the concept of stewardship is often applied to time, talent and treasure and, more and more, to the planet. After reading the text from Amos as well as the gospel, we may feel that we have just been served a summons from God and must now prepare an accounting of our stewardship.
From a La Salette perspective, we might say that the Beautiful Lady dwelt on the stewardship of time. “Do you say your prayers well?” Praying well does not mean we should just be careful to avoid distractions, for example. Rather, it is a question of giving appropriate time to prayer, and making sure that we are praying from the heart, not only with our lips.
Mary also mentioned the Lord’s Day twice. First, speaking like the prophets in God’s name, she says, “I gave you six days to work; I kept the seventh for myself, and no one will give it to me.” Later she states that only a few elderly women go to Mass in the summer, and that when others do go to church, they make a mockery of religion.
Finally, “In Lent they go to the butcher shops like dogs.”
Even outside of the religious context, we need to examine our use of time. Allowing, of course, for appropriate leisure, we need to avoid wasting hours on activities—or inactivity—that we are unable or ashamed to account for. In our professional life, do we put in an honest day’s work?
As for talent and treasure, do we put them to good use for the Christian community and those in need around us? Or do we squander them for our own pleasure and greed, storing up treasure which will not go with us to the grave.
What would it be like if God would demand a full account of our stewardship? Actually, the question is not hypothetical. What will it be like, when…?
We should also be ready to give an account of one of our greatest gifts—our La Salette vocation.
Fr. René Butler, M.S. and Wayne Vanasse