One Minute Reflection – 22 September – The Memorial of St Thomas of Villanueva OSA (1488-1555) Archbishop, Confessor – Sirach 44:16-27; 45:3-20, Matthew 25:14-23
“To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one—to each according to his ability. Then he went away. Immediately …” – Matthew 25:15
REFLECTION – “The man who is the landowner is actually the Creator and Lord of all. The Word compares the time the landowner spends away from home, in the parable, to either the Ascension of Christ into Heaven, or, at any rate, to the unseen and invisible character of the Divine Nature. Now, one must conceive of the property of God, as those in each country and city who believe in Him. He calls His servants, those who according to the times, Christ crowns with the glory of the Priesthood. For the holy Paul writes, “No-one takes this honoUr upon himself; he must be called by God.”
He hands over [His property] to those who are under Him, to each giving a spiritual gift, so that he might have character and aptitude. We think that this distribution of the talents, is not supplied to the household servants in equal measure because, each is quite different from the other, in their understanding. Immediately they head out for their labours, He says, directly, indicating to us here, that apart from the procrastination of one, they are fit to carry out the work of God.
Surely those who are bound by fear and laziness will evolve into the worst evils. For he buried, Jesus says, the talent given to him in the earth. He kept the gift hidden, making it unprofitable for others and useless for himself. For that very reason, the talent is taken away from him and will be given to the one who is already rich. The Spirit has departed from such as these and the gift of the divine gifts. But to those who are industrious, an even more lavish gift will be presented.” – St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Archbishop of Alexandria, Father and Doctor of the Church (Fragment 283)
PRAYER – O God, Who endowed blessed Bishop Thomas with the virtue of special pity for the poor, we beseech Thee, through his intercession, generously to pour forth the riches of Thy mercy upon all those who pray to Thee. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).