On Saturday evening I attended Catholic mass with my grandmother. I walked away from the mass very frustrated.
The first reading was about women working themselves to the bone doing womanly work. Snore…
The sermon basically told me that the Church teaches Catholic guilt to children at a young age. But I already knew that, having been raised Catholic.
But the Gospel was Matthew 25:14-30. The Gospel reads as:
14 'It is like a man about to go abroad who summoned his servants and entrusted his property to them. 15 To one he gave five talents, to another two, to a third one, each in proportion to his ability. Then he set out on his journey. 16 The man who had received the five talents promptly went and traded with them and made five more. 17 The man who had received two made two more in the same way. 18 But the man who had received one went off and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master's money. 19 Now a long time afterwards, the master of those servants came back and went through his accounts with them. 20 The man who had received the five talents came forward bringing five more. "Sir," he said, "you entrusted me with five talents; here are five more that I have made." 21 His master said to him, "Well done, good and trustworthy servant; you have shown you are trustworthy in small things; I will trust you with greater; come and join in your master's happiness." 22 Next the man with the two talents came forward. "Sir," he said, "you entrusted me with two talents; here are two more that I have made." 23 His master said to him, "Well done, good and trustworthy servant; you have shown you are trustworthy in small things; I will trust you with greater; come and join in your master's happiness." 24 Last came forward the man who had the single talent. "Sir," said he, "I had heard you were a hard man, reaping where you had not sown and gathering where you had not scattered; 25 so I was afraid, and I went off and hid your talent in the ground. Here it is; it was yours, you have it back." 26 But his master answered him, "You wicked and lazy servant! So you knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered? 27 Well then, you should have deposited my money with the bankers, and on my return I would have got my money back with interest. 28 So now, take the talent from him and give it to the man who has the ten talents. 29 For to everyone who has will be given more, and he will have more than enough; but anyone who has not, will be deprived even of what he has. 30 As for this good-for-nothing servant, throw him into the darkness outside, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth."
All I can take from this, and perhaps I’m being shortsighted (I probably am), is that the lesson is that the rich get richer, and poor give the rich all they have. Yet, this seems to be God’s will. I don’t get it.
On top of all that, the master admits to questionable and unethical practices. He reaps where he has not sown? He gathers where he hasn’t scattered? This means that he’s stealing from other people’s farms? Yet, he’s in charge of giving his servants gold, expects to receive back more than he gave, and then takes the money gave to the last guy, and gives it to the guy het have the most gold. (A “talent” refers to an amount of gold.)
Yet, at least to my reading, the Bible presents this as… Gospel?
“For to everyone who has will be given more, and he will have more than enough; but anyone who has not, will be deprived even of what he has.”
That sentence basically says, the rich get richer, and the poor get poorer. It was true 2,000 years ago, and it’s still true today.
I just… I can’t properly express my frustration with this parable. Perhaps someone has an alternate explanation that won’t make me as disillusioned?