At that time Jesus spoke this parable to His disciples: A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return. And calling his ten servants, he gave them ten pounds; and said to them, Trade till I come. But his citizens hated him; and they sent an embassage after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us. And it came to pass that he returned, having received the kingdom; and he commanded his servants to be called, to whom he had given the money, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading. And the first came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained ten pounds: and he said to him, Well done, thou good servant, because thou hast been faithful in a little, thou shalt have power over ten cities. And the second came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds: and he said to him, Be thou also over five cities. And another came, saying, Lord, behold, here is thy pound, which I have kept laid up in a napkin; for I feared thee, because thou art an austere man; thou takest up what thou didst not lay down, and thou reapest that which thou didst not sow. He saith to him, Out of thy own mouth I judge thee, thou wicked servant. Thou knowest that I was an austere man, taking up what I laid not down, and reaping that which I did not sow: and why then didst thou not give my money into the bank, that at my coming I might have exacted it with usury? And he said to them that stood by, Take the pound away from him, and give it to him that hath the ten pounds. And they said to Him, Lord, he hath ten pounds. But I say to you, that to every one that hath shall be given, and he shall abound; and from him that hath not, even that which he hath shall be taken from him. (Luke 19: 12-26)
In today’s Gospel passage, we read the parable spoken by our Lord to His disciples. This parable, often referred to as the Parable of the Talents, provides us with profound lessons about our responsibilities, stewardship, and the account we must one day render before God.
In this parable, a nobleman sets forth on a distant voyage, his purpose being to attain a kingdom for himself and subsequently return. Prior to his departure, he entrusts ten of his servants with ten pounds each, instructing them to engage in trade during his absence. This nobleman signifies our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. His departure into the “far country” represents His ascension into Heaven after His earthly ministry, and His return refers to His glorious Second Coming.
This parable illustrates the spiritual endowments, talents, and resources God bestows upon each one of us. The pounds symbolize these divine gifts, granted to us to be used wisely and productively in the service of God and our fellow men. The nobleman’s directive to “trade till I come” echoes the call of Christ for us to actively engage in the work of the Kingdom during our sojourn on Earth.
Yet, there is a troubling aspect to this narrative—the citizens’ rejection of the nobleman’s reign. In a similar vein, we find those who disregard the lordship of Christ, those who send forth the proclamation: “We will not have this man to reign over us.” Such rejection reflects the persistent struggle between the desires of the world and the rightful sovereignty of Christ over our lives. This is being echoed right now in the modernist Catholic church which has veered far away from Christ’s teaching. That same institute rejects the divinity of Christ and speaks of His Presence being in the bread and wine with lying lips. Otherwise, the bishops would not permit the bread to be given in the parishioner’s hands.
Let us continue. Upon his return, the nobleman evaluates the stewardship of his servants. Two of the servants, who multiplied their pounds, are commended and granted authority in proportion to their faithfulness. Their reward reminds us that our faithful and fruitful efforts in God’s service are met with spiritual growth and blessings in His eternal kingdom.
However, our attention is drawn to the third servant—a servant who chose to bury his pound in fear. This servant’s actions, or lack thereof, reflect a reluctance to invest his talents, symbolizing those who fail to embrace their God-given potential due to apprehension or complacency. The napkin in which he hides his pound illustrates how some of us bury our talents, our potential, in the recesses of fear and self-doubt. Again, I return to the modernist church. She and her bishops have buried the talent that was entrusted to them, and have forsaken their responsibility to uphold the great pillars and truths of the Holy Catholic Church.
When confronted by the nobleman, this servant expresses his fear of the nobleman’s “austere” nature—his strictness. The master’s response emphasizes accountability and responsibility, reminding us that God expects us to make diligent use of the gifts He has entrusted to us. God’s generosity is not to be wasted, but to be multiplied. The servant’s fate, the forfeiture of his pound, serves as a sobering lesson: to those who fail to invest their talents, even what they have will be taken away. This principle underscores that our gifts are meant to be employed, multiplied, and shared, not concealed out of fear or negligence.
As we reflect on this parable, let us examine our lives—our talents, resources, and opportunities—and discern whether we are utilizing them to advance the Kingdom of God. Are we multiplying the pounds entrusted to us, or are we hiding them away?
May this parable serve as a call to active engagement in God’s work, the prudent use of our God-given talents, and the anticipation of Christ’s return, when we will be called to account for our stewardship. Let us remember the words of our Lord: “To everyone who has, more will be given, and he shall abound; and from him who has not, even what he has shall be taken away.”
In this light, let us seek to be diligent servants, multiplying our talents for the glory of God and the advancement of His Kingdom, so that on that great day of reckoning, we may hear the words of our Master: “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
May God bless you +
25 August 2023, St. Louis IX