Wednesday of the Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time
Today’s gospel speaks about the expected return on resources that were given. The story tells of a powerful man who left a certain amount of cash. Some invested it and did quite well, while one person merely hid the money and returned it without any interest. Pleased with his the gain, those who invested the resources were handsomely rewarded by the man in charge while the one person who simply guarded the money and returned it without interest got a severe reprimand.
The gospel of Luke speaks particularly about the poor and how they will inherit the earth. Likewise Mary in her Magnificat personifies the poor in this same gospel so this foray into economics and economic gain seems a bit out of place for a gospel writer who seems to avoid investments and interest.
The story of course is not about monetary gain but the responsibility of using resources well. It is interesting to note that Jesuit confessors to royalty in the 1600s used this story to remind those who had much that much was expected. In fact, this is one of the reasons the Society of Jesus was suppressed in 1773. Certain powers in various governments perceived the spiritual counsel given to the leaders as contrary to their own monetary gain. These leaders lobbied and bullied the church into suppressing the Jesuits, which eventually occurred. But the Jesuits came back and continue to remind people that, as Ignatius so clearly laid out in the First Principle and Foundation of the Spiritual Exercises, creation is to be used and used wisely so that humanity can better reach its goal of union with God.