Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Memorial of Saint Lucy, virgin and martyr

(Zephaniah 3:1-2.9-13; Matthew 21:28-32)

Probably because her name suggests the word for light, those with eye problems invoke St. Lucy for assistance. Little about her is known with certainty, but there are pious stories of her eyes being plucked out and then restored. Fortuitously, her association with light draws out the meaning of today’s gospel.

Of the two sons in Jesus’ parable, the one who does the will of his father sees the light. The other son, thinking that paying lip service to his father’s wishes is enough, walks in darkness. The irony is that Jesus connects the son having the light with the suspects of his day – “tax collectors and prostitutes.” Conversely, he associates those who consider themselves pretty good with the son wallowing in darkness.

Conversion in this life never ends. Even if others consider us as good folk, we have to strive to love God more thoroughly and to consider ourselves more honestly. This is God’s will for us – what it means for us to “go out and work in the vineyard.”