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The unknown day and hour


Gospel Reading: Mt 24:42-51


JESUS said to his di­sciples: “Stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come. Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour of night when the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and not let his house be broken into. So too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.

“Who, then, is the faithful and pru­dent servant, whom the master has put in charge of his household to distribute to them their food at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his mas­ter on his arrival finds doing so. Amen, I say to you, he will put him in charge of all his property. But if that wicked ser­vant says to himself, ‘My master is long delayed,’ and begins to beat his fellow servants, and eat and drink with drunk­ards, the servant’s master will come on an unexpected day and at an unknown hour and will punish him severely and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.”


Reflections: Faithful and prudent…wicked servant

In former times, when haciendas or vast tracts of land were owned by wealthy families, the day-to-day running of the property was entrusted to a head servant. He is called mayordomo, literally, “head of the house.” As in the Gospel, this servant is put by the master in charge of his property and of his household. He has authority over the male and female ser­vants. He is expected to take good care of all his charges. But the head servant may abuse his authority in his master’s absence, beating his fellow servants and eating and drinking with drunkards. In­formed of his abuses, the master will come at an unexpected hour and severely punish this wicked head servant.

The parable teaches that the Lord en­trusts us with great responsibility for which we will someday have to give an account. The things or persons given to us are not our own possessions to do whatever we want with them; they belong to the Lord, and we are simply the Lord’s stewards or administrators. On the way we exercise this responsibility depends either our re­ward or our punishment.

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Over whom or what have you been en­trusted with responsibility? Have you been a faithful and prudent “head servant”?

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SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord,” ST PAULS,” 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: publishing@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.