Monday of the Ninth Week in Ordinary Time
(II Peter 1:2-7; Mark 12:1-12)
Global warming is a fact. No one should deny that temperatures have been increasing steadily for thirty years. But there have always been cycles of warm and cold temperatures for ages. The critical debate concerns human responsibility for higher temperatures. Are artificial pollutants sealing warm air in the atmosphere? Today’s gospel can shed some light on the moral dimension of the issue.
Jesus is locked in a battle of wits with the religious establishment of his place. He sees its leaders as hampering God’s freeing the people of injustice. For him they are like the vineyard that produces sour grapes in the Book of Isaiah. His parable implies that like the leaders’ ancestors killed the prophets, they will murder him.
The vineyard in Jesus’ parable may also be taken as the environment. The wicked farmers then are those who wantonly contaminate it for profit. Whether or not the result is rising temperatures, leaders of industry are polluting the earth. As a result, common people – especially the poor – suffer. Often the biggest culprits do not stop at murder in pursuing their aims.
Everyone should take care in treating the environment. Although we may not have many resources to manage, we still can improve it. Using fewer disposable items is something all might do. Disposing hazardous wastes in designated places also assures a safer earth.