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The parable of the Talents


Gospel reading: Mt 25:14-30


JESUS told his disciples this parable: “It will be as when a man who was going on a journey called in his servants and entrusted his possessions to them. To one he gave five talents; to another, two; to a third, one – to each according to his ability. Then he went away. Immediately the one who received five talents went and traded with them, and made another five. Likewise, the one who received two made another two. But the man who received one went off and dug a hole in the ground and bur­ied his master’s money. … The one who had received five talents came forward bringing the additional five. He said, ‘Master, you gave me five talents. See, I have made five more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsi­bilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’… Then the one who had received the one talent came forward and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a demanding person, harvesting where you did not plant and gathering where you did not scatter; so out of fear I went off and buried your talent in the ground. Here it is back.’ His master said to him in reply, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I did not plant and gather where I did not scat­ter? Should you not then have put my money in the bank so that I could have got it back with interest on my return? Now then! Take the talent from him and give it to the one with ten. For to everyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And throw this useless servant into the darkness outside, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.’ ”


REFLECTIONS: I will give you great responsibilities

Jesus is happy to give more work to his dis­ciples who prove to be faithful and diligent. He expresses this in the parable of the Talents. In the story, a landlord who goes on a journey en­trusts his property to his three servants. The landlord knows their capacities and distributes his possessions according to their abilities. To the most responsible one, he gives five talents; to the next, two; to the least capable, he gives one talent.

Right after the departure of their master, the first servant invests and doubles the amount. The second has the same success. But the third makes no increase.

When the master comes back, he calls his servants to submit their gains. He commends the first and the second servants because they have performed very well. They have increased his wealth. The master is happy and promises to give them greater responsibilities. However, the third one has buried his one talent in the ground for a reason that is not acceptable. This guy is punished severely. He is divested of re­sponsibility.-

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