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Lenten Weekday
Genesis 37:3-4, 12-13A, 17B-28A
Psalm 105:16-17, 18-19, 20-21
Matthew 21:33-43, 45-46
Today’s readings speak about a father’s great love for this son. The
first story from Genesis tells the story of Jacob his sons and the near fratri-
cide of Joseph. In the Gospel Jesus tells a parable about a land owner who
falls victim to his tenants. Each time the land owner sends a steward to
collect the rent, the tenants harm the stewards. Finally the land owner
sends his son, only to have the son murdered by the tenants.
Recently the news told of a lottery winner who bought two sets of tickets.
One set for a collection of co-workers and one set for herself. One of the
tickets won a huge sum of money. The woman says that the winning
ticket was within the set she bought for herself. The co-workers, disap-
pointed, have asked her how she separated the tickets hers verses the
work team.
Jealously fueled Joseph’s ten brother to sell him into slavery.
Greed fueled the tenants to kill the landowner’s son; both of
these are cardinal sins. Perhaps both of these cardinal sins are ac-
tive in the contemporary story. The co-workers are jealous and
want a share of the winnings. If the woman is not entirely truthful
about the winning ticket, greed is at work.
What motivates these feelings? When I was a young married
woman, I dreamed of buying a home and filling it with all the
good things my parents had. But saving the money for the down
payment was painfully difficult and slow. I remember getting the
Publisher’s Clearing House mailings. I carefully read all the di-
rections and filled out form after form. I never gave into the
temptation to purchase a whole bunch of magazines, which was
the motivation of the sender. Each night before bed I would pray
to God: ”God please let me be one of those lucky winners and I