Twenty-eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time
October 11, 2020 Cycle A
by Rev. Jose Maria de Sousa Alvin Calado Cortes, F.S.C.B.
Chaplain Saint John Paul II National Shrine
 Washington, D.C.

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Sunday Reading Meditations

“Come to the feast” (Mt 22:9). Today’s readings tell us that life with God is a feast.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus compares the kingdom of God to a king who gives a wedding feast for his son. In today’s first reading, the prophet Isaiah says: “On this mountain the LORD of hosts will provide for all peoples a feast” (Is 25:6).

The wedding feast is the nuptial union of God with humanity, the union between heaven and earth prophesied to occur at the end of history, which has already begun with the resurrection of Christ. Jesus is the bridegroom and the Church is the bride.

Life with God is a feast. It is communion, joy, color, light, music, harmony and dance.

“Come to the feast.” Life with God is a feast but only if we participate. We are invited but have to dress accordingly. The way we dress is our contribution to the feast: “My friend, how is that you came in here without a wedding garment?” (Mt 22:12).

What is this “wedding garment”? In the Letter to the Galatians, Saint Paul says: “For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ” (Gal 3:27).

The wedding garment is Baptism. In this sacrament, our life is radically transformed. Through water and the Holy Spirit, we pass from darkness to light. Now we are new creatures.

The wedding garment is not only a sacrament we have received but also a life-changing  personal encounter with Christ, that reveals the content of our Baptism, our experience of being saved by him: “Let us rejoice and be glad that he has saved us” (Is 25:9). Being baptized means that our daily life is nourished by Christ’s gentle presence. As today’s responsorial psalm says, “In verdant pastures he gives me repose; beside restful waters he leads me; he refreshes my soul” (Ps 23:2–3).

The wedding garment is our knowledge of the riches and glory of Christ (Cf. Col 1:27). This knowledge changes our minds and way of life. In today’s second reading, Saint Paul says to the Philippians: “My God will fully supply whatever you need, in accord with his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (Phil 4:19).

The wedding garment is the experience of finding our strength in Jesus. As Saint Paul says: “I can do all things in him who strengthens me” (Gal 4:13).

The wedding garment is to live a life of virtue. To be clothed with Christ means to practice the virtues. Saint Paul says: “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience […]. And over all these put on love, that is, the bond of perfection” (Col 3:12.14).

My dear friends, life with God is a feast. A feast starts when we receive the invitation. We have already been invited. May we allow the Holy Spirit to bring us to the feast that has already begun and will last forever.  Amen.