October 12, 2014
In today's liturgy food plays an important part in all three readings. The salvation of the elect in Isaiah is depicted in terms of a mountaintop banquet celebrating God's victory over death, replete with choice meats and vintage wines. From prison, Paul speaks to the Philippians of good and bad times, times when food was plentiful and when it was scarce. It all mattered little since Christ was his sustenance. In the Gospel Jesus describes the final era which he inaugurates as an elaborate wedding banquet for the King’s son with many participants but also unfortunately many "regrets." The King continues to send our invitation.
It was a great joy for me last week when adults and children from St. Michael’s School responded to the invitation of the King to join the wedding banquet of the Eucharist. All of us are the workers for the King. Our task is to carry his invitation to other, then we go home, pray, fast, and live a life of a true Christian. When the people see our joy of being in the banquet hall of the King, that is the Church, they may open their heart to the invitation and will be hosted by the King and his Son, Jesus.
Each Eucharist reminds us concretely of what it means to be hosted by the Son of God. We all come around the Lord's Table with no consideration of prestige or status. We are in the same Lord, on the same Table of Thanksgiving. We are also constantly reminded to grow in the Christian life and not to become complacent. Tattered, dirty clothes will not be acceptable when our final reckoning takes place. Each liturgy, then, calls us to alertness. We are hope-filled people, but we must keep our eyes riveted on our goal. As we re-read the invitation which we accepted years ago, we should not forget to read the fine print: "Appropriate dress is required."