12 july 2020
Is 55:10-11; Rom 8:18-23; Mt 13:1-23 or 13:1-9
The Prodigal Sower
Dear brothers and sisters, parables are really a form of writing and preaching that the ancient rabbis in Israel used in order to explain the closeness and the goodness and what God was like. Jesus, being a rabbi and having that same kind of mission, he had come to preach the Kingdom of God was here and now, he turned to teaching them through parables.
Basically, a parable is an open-ended story. Open-ended stories leave you hanging and it means that you are supposed to, in a sense, close it. And you close it with your own understanding of each parable. So a parable is story, but it is a story without much conclusion, and it says to the listener, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”
The Kingdom of God doesn’t mean a place. The Kingdom of God is God Himself. It is a place in the sense it is where He is and where He is adored and where He is loved and where He is cared for and where He is listened to.
The Kingdom of God means that the listener to the parable has to have faith. You have to put your faith into the words. And, of course, the one who is giving these words and telling us these stories is Jesus, the Son of God.
And so it is that Jesus tells the parable and the people listen to the parable, but afterwards he goes into the house. You notice the house always plays a role in the gospel story, because when Jesus goes into the house it means he is with his disciples and he is preparing them for their ministry. And their ministry, of course, is his ministry.
The story is very simple. The sower prepares the field. He prepares the field to receive the seeds which are the word of God. The sower now sows the seed and here’s where it begins.
And when he does this and he fills the whole area with seeds, he also includes the thorn bushes, and he also includes the places where the people walk, and he also includes the areas where the seed will find rocky soil and will grow just a little bit and then suddenly it will disappear because it has no roots. Any good farmer would say, “You’re wasting your seed. You must plant carefully like we do.”
The sower is more than a sower. He’s not just sowing seeds. He’s kind of like almost happy to be in the field flinging these seeds around. It doesn’t matter if they only last a day. It doesn’t matter if they’re in the wrong place. It doesn’t matter as long as those seeds hit the earth some place, or even the sidewalks or what have you. We learn from this parable is everybody should be covered by the word of God. You just don’t pick up with Catholics or Protestants, or this or that, all the things we think would be appropriate for this farmer to be doing. He is prodigal. No-one is outside — even those who are choked, choked by the cares of the world, even those that are trampled down and they seem like people who nobody loves or cares for. It’s not a place for the best of the best if we want a nice, huge wonderful harvest, you see. It’s a place where God comes. And He comes everywhere in every kind of way.
Jesus is the sower and the seed is the word of God and the word of God gives life.
And then also is included in this now is that every seed must die. And Jesus, the one who is throwing all these seeds down, has told, at another time, the Son of Man must also die, for the seed must die in order to give new life.
Well, now we have a whole different understanding. We begin to realise that you can take a parable, a simple little story, and you can begin to see that behind it is an introduction to the heart of God.
God has no biases. To God, each and every seed is precious in His eyes, and each and every seed does not have to be tenderly cared for but it has to feel that it belongs.
We are called to prepare our heart for the seed and allow it to grow and bear fruits. May the seed of God’s word find our fertile heart to establish his kingdom within us. Fr Ephrem
Let us pray for all those who are unwell especially Hazel Kingston, Nesi Tan, Warren Stevenson, Eddie Wilkins, John Cairns-Cowan and Graeme Adams and for the wonderful people who are caring for the everyday needs of the sick in our Community.
We also pray for the members of our Parish families who have died recently especially Gwen Carre and Lorraine Arthurs and those whose anniversaries occur around this time; Kenneth (Ken) Masters, Nancie Burge and Lizzie Gamble.
A Memorial Mass for Rae Dawson will be held at Holy Cross Church 9.30am Friday 24th July. All welcome
The following measures will remain till further notice:
Covid 19 - St Vincent de Paul Holy Trinity Parish . In our local eastern suburbs communities, many families are now experiencing ongoing hardship from COVID-19, such as going short of food, losing their job, cut backs in hours of work, digging into savings, debt, and difficulty clothing and equipping kids back at school. Do please continue to keep the sick, lonely, poor and marginalised in your prayers.
Your SVDP Conference in Holy Trinity Parish is helping people in strict confidence if we hear who needs help, " following Jesus present amongst those who suffer or may be excluded from society" . Should you know of any households in need of emergency food, winter bedding, clothing items or simple friendly support, do please arrange contact with Tina Quidilla, local SVDP Conference, ph 021 159 2412, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, if you wish to donate to your local Holy Trinity St Vincent de Paul group to purchase groceries, living essentials and student uniforms and items for families suffering hardship in the Eastern Suburbs, please pay online to: " St Vincent de Paul Society, Seatoun & Miramar Conference, BNZ Kilbirnie, Account No. 02 - 0576 - 0017817 - 06", or contact Maria Pene, our local SVDP Treasurer, ph 022 428 0427, email: email@example.com
The July 12-25 issue of NZ Catholic is out now. Some headlines are: Church doesn’t require Jesus to be blonde and blue-eyed. New home for babies and mothers. Christchurch parish outreach training planned. Caritas opposes West Bank plans.
The next issue of NZ Catholic will be published on July 26. Selected pages from this paper in digital form will be sent to parishes next week.
John 20:21 “Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father sent me, so I am sending you.”
Engaged Encounter is a weekend experience for couples intending to be married. Remaining weekends for 2020 are 18 & 19 July and 14 & 15 November. Venue is Otari Parish presbytery, 301 Karori Road, Karori, Wellington. Registrations close 2 weeks before. For more details go to the website http://www.cee-wellington.co.nz/
Phone Kate and Simon Olson. 04 801 6192 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
JOSHUA FELLOWSHIP Come and join other men for a cuppa, prayer and a talk on Thursday 16th July 2020 at 7:30pm (Note: fellowship from 7:00pm for 7:30pm start) In CONNOLLY HALL, Guildford Terrace, Thorndon (behind the Sacred Heart Cathedral). Speaker: Jack Ponting, our Joshua Newsletter Editor on “Gift of JOY, pure and simple” Want to know more? Ring Steve Ready 027-356-9555 or email: email@example.com
Marist St Pats RFC – Past Players and Supporters Complimentary luncheon and launch of the Clubs 50th Jubilee Book “C’mon Red” Saturday 25 July at the Hataitai Clubrooms.
The Coast to Coast Rosary for Life and Faith will be held this year on Saturday 15th August at 3 pm. Please help lead or join a group in your parish or community. For more information, please go to www.coasttocoastrosary.co.nz or phone Clare 022 1912 886
Pa Maria Marist Spirituality Centre - Revised Programme for 2020, with dates for the Winter Film Series, Spiritual Theology Course and Non-Residential Retreat. If you would like an emailed copy, please contact Brian Cummings SM at firstname.lastname@example.org,nz
We are looking for volunteers who can help us collect for the Mary Potter Hospice Street Collection on the 18h and 19th September. All the money raised at the Appeal will be used to help us keep our services free-of-charge for anyone that may need us. It is because of all our amazing volunteers (and the support we receive from the community) that come back year after year to support us, that we are able to continue to provide the great service that we do.
If you can help us by volunteering at this year’s street collection, please register your support on our website https://marypotter.org.nz/events/street-appeal/
Help protect yourself from winter bugs. When you’re entering public buildings always use the hand sanitiser.
In Aotearoa NZ we are fortunate in so many ways. We’ve acted together to protect ourselves from Covid-19, we’re supporting local; while we’re still being kind, we need to ensure that kindness includes ourselves as well, especially those facing new or unexpected challenges in life.
Giving - Do things for others
Relating - Connect with people
Exercising -Take care of your body
Awareness - Live mindfully
Trying Out - Keep learning
Direction - Have goals to achieve
Resilience - Find positive ways to cope with challenge
Emotions - Look for the positive in situations
Acceptance - Accept the good in yourself; made in God’s image
Meaning -You’re a vital part of something bigger than yourself
God of Resurrection, be our companion throughout each day.
Encircle us with the splendour of your light. Let nothing disturb us or take away our peace.
Open our eyes to recognise the many blessings in our lives and all the possibilities that await us in every moment. May this simple prayer be true in our lives today. AMEN
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