Parable of the Son's Wedding
Bible Readings for Thursday August 22 2013

1st Reading:  Judges 11:29-39

{11:29} Therefore, the Spirit of the Lord rested upon Jephthah, and circling around Gilead, and Manasseh, and also Mizpah of Gilead, and crossing from there to the sons of Ammon,

{11:30} he made a vow to the Lord, saying, “If you will deliver the sons of Ammon into my hands,

{11:31} whoever will be the first to depart from the doors of my house to meet me, when I return in peace from the sons of Ammon, the same will I offer as a holocaust to the Lord.”

{11:32} And Jephthah crossed to the sons of Ammon, so that he might fight against them. And the Lord delivered them into his hands.

{11:33} And he struck them down from Aroer, as far as the entrance to Minnith, twenty cities, and as far as Abel, which is covered with vineyards, in an exceedingly great slaughter. And the sons of Ammon were humbled by the sons of Israel.

{11:34} But when Jephthah returned to Mizpah, to his own house, his only daughter met him with timbrels and dances. For he had no other children.

{11:35} And upon seeing her, he tore his garments, and he said: “Alas, my daughter! You have cheated me, and you yourself have been cheated. For I opened my mouth to the Lord, and I can do nothing else.”

{11:36} And she answered him, “My father, if you have opened your mouth to the Lord, do to me whatever you have promised, since victory has been granted to you, as well as vengeance against your enemies.”

{11:37} And she said to her father: “Grant to me this one thing, which I request. Permit me, that I may wander the hillsides for two months, and that I may mourn my virginity with my companions.”

{11:38} And he answered her, “Go.” And he released her for two months. And when she had departed with her friends and companions, she wept over her virginity in the hillsides.

{11:39} And when the two months expired, she returned to her father, and he did to her just as he had vowed, though she knew no man. From this, the custom grew up in Israel, and the practice has been preserved,

 

Responsorial Psalm:  Psalm 40:5, 7-10

{40:5} Blessed is the man whose hope is in the name of the Lord, and who has no respect for vanities and absurd falsehoods.

{40:7} Sacrifice and oblation, you did not want. But you have perfected ears for me. Holocaust and sin offering, you did not require.

{40:8} Then I said, “Behold, I draw near.” At the head of the book, it has been written of me:

{40:9} that I should do your will. My God, I have willed it. And your law is in the midst of my heart.

{40:10} I have announced your justice in a great Church: behold, I will not restrain my lips. O Lord, you have known it.

 

Gospel:  Matthew 22:1-14

{22:1} And responding, Jesus again spoke to them in parables, saying:

{22:2} “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who was king, who celebrated a wedding for his son.

{22:3} And he sent his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding. But they were not willing to come.

{22:4} Again, he sent other servants, saying, ‘Tell the invited: Behold, I have prepared my meal. My bulls and fatlings have been killed, and all is ready. Come to the wedding.’

{22:5} But they ignored this and they went away: one to his country estate, and another to his business.

{22:6} Yet truly, the rest took hold of his servants and, having treated them with contempt, killed them.

{22:7} But when the king heard this, he was angry. And sending out his armies, he destroyed those murderers, and he burned their city.

{22:8} Then he said to his servants: ‘The wedding, indeed, has been prepared. But those who were invited were not worthy.

{22:9} Therefore, go out to the ways, and call whomever you will find to the wedding.’

{22:10} And his servants, departing into the ways, gathered all those whom they found, bad and good, and the wedding was filled with guests.

{22:11} Then the king entered to see the guests. And he saw a man there who was not clothed in a wedding garment.

{22:12} And he said to him, ‘Friend, how is it that you have entered here without having a wedding garment?’ But he was dumbstruck.

{22:13} Then the king said to the ministers: ‘Bind his hands and feet, and cast him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

{22:14} For many are called, but few are chosen.’ ”

 

Reflection                         

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