Daily Gospel Reflection: Memorial of Saint Leo the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church
Bishop Robert Barron
November 10, 2023
Memorial of Saint Leo the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church
Gospel: Lk 16:1-8
Jesus said to his disciples, "A rich man had a steward who was reported to him for squandering his property. He summoned him and said, 'What is this I hear about you? Prepare a full account of your stewardship, because you can no longer be my steward.' The steward said to himself, 'What shall I do, now that my master is taking the position of steward away from me? I am not strong enough to dig and I am ashamed to beg. I know what I shall do so that, when I am removed from the stewardship, they may welcome me into their homes.' He called in his master's debtors one by one. To the first he said, 'How much do you owe my master?' He replied, 'One hundred measures of olive oil.' He said to him, 'Here is your promissory note. Sit down and quickly write one for fifty.' Then to another he said, 'And you, how much do you owe?' He replied, 'One hundred measures of wheat.' He said to him, 'Here is your promissory note; write one for eighty.' And the master commended that dishonest steward for acting prudently. For the children of this world are more prudent in dealing with their own generation than the children of light."
*United States Conference of Catholic
Bishop Robert Barron
Friends, in today’s Gospel, Jesus praises a steward who cheats his master. Now, what do we make of this? It seems so peculiar especially in Luke’s Gospel, where Jesus has been teaching the radical message of detachment from worldly goods. But here he is giving his approval to a man who clings to wealth in an immoral way. Well, what gives?
Jesus wants us to see that this steward takes a hard look at his situation and decides to do something about it. Now, the Lord is not telling us to imitate his immorality. But what Jesus admires is his resolve. He knows his own weaknesses, he assesses himself honestly, and then he decides to act.
The Lord told the parable to urge us to carefully examine our spiritual condition. His desire is that we choose to renew our relationship with him. He wants us to take stock of our weaknesses and make a firm resolution to acquire necessary strengths to fix them.
If your prayer life is weak, act to give it new life. If you have not been worshiping fervently at Mass, decide to participate more fully. If you have a broken relationship, repair it. And so on. Decide now, then act.