28th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Ages 3-6): Invited to the Celebration!
(Adults, once again, this is a difficult Gospel to share with little ones. There are frightening images. But if we strip the parable down, we arrive at the plan of God. It is not being unrealistic to ignore the exaggerated responses of both the people and the king with the child who is not yet ready to make moral choices. Instead, the plan of God answers the child's unspoken question: Who are you, God?)
I think you will not be surprised when I tell you that, in the Gospel for this Sunday, Jesus tells another parable about the Kingdom of God. So often he tells us what the Kingdom of God is like! It is so important to him that we know the Kingdom. What more can we learn today?
“The kingdom of God may be compared to a king who gave a wedding banquet for his son.”
What can this mean? We know that a king is someone who is in charge of all the people in the land. We usually say that a king is wealthy; that means, he is very rich. A king could use his wealth to build large castles and to buy more and more things for himself. Or, he might use his wealth to make life better for the people in the land. I wonder what this king is like.
The king in the parable has a son who is getting married. Why do people get married? The king's son loves someone very much. The king must love his son, too, because he wants to celebrate that love.
The king wants to celebrate by giving a wedding banquet. Have you been to a wedding banquet after people get married? A banquet is a celebration! There will be a great feast with delicious food and plenty to drink. No one will be hungry or thirsty there! There will be music and singing and dancing. We can imagine that there will be so many smiles and so much laughter. No one will be full of sadness there! Joy will fill up the room and spill out of the doors into the streets! There will be an abundance of joy because people are celebrating love! How wonderful it would be to be a guest at the wedding banquet!
Who are the guests at this banquet? Who does the king invite to come? The king sends his servants out, saying,
‘Go therefore into the main streets and invite everyone you find to the wedding banquet.’
The king invites everyone! He asks them to come, he wants them to come! Everyone!!! This will be a HUGE banquet! I guess we know what this king does with his wealth! He gives a banquet and invites everyone to come celebrate with him.
Jesus says the kingdom of God is like this.
It is like a king who...
to celebrate love
with an abundance of joy.
How good it is to be invited to the wedding banquet of the Kingdom of God!