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Gospel for Sunday, November 15: Matthew 25: 14-30


14For it was like a man who, setting out on a journey, called his servants and handed over his goods to them. 15To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, according to the ability of each; then he departed. Immediately 16he who had received five talents went and employed them, and he gained another five talents. 17So also he who had received two, gained two more. 18He, on the other hand, who had received only one talent, went and made a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money there. 19After a long time the master of those servants returned and wanted to settle accounts with them. 20The one who had received five talents showed up and brought another five talents, saying, “Lord, you delivered me five talents; behold, I have gained another five talents.” 21“Well, good and faithful servant,” his master said to him, “you have been faithful in the little, I will give you power over much; share in your master’s joy. 22Then he who had received two talents presented himself and said, “Lord, you delivered me two talents; behold, I have gained two more.” 23“Well, good and faithful servant,” his master said to him, “you have been faithful in the little, I will give you power over much; share in your master’s joy. 24He also finally appeared who had received only one talent and said, “Lord, I know that you are a hard man, reaping where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered. 25I was afraid and went and hid your talent under the ground: this is what is yours.” 26The master answered him, “Wicked and slothful servant, you knew that I reap where I did not sow and reap where I did not scatter; 27you should have entrusted my money to the bankers, and so, returning, I would have withdrawn mine with interest. 28Take away therefore the talent, and give it to him who has the ten talents. 29For to everyone who has, it will be given, and he will be in abundance; but to the one who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. 30And the worthless servant cast him out into darkness; there he will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

Mt 25: 14-30

Dear Sisters and Brothers of the Misericordie, I am Carlo Miglietta, doctor, biblical scholar, layman, husband, father and grandfather ( Also today I share with you a short meditation thought on the Gospel, with special reference to the theme of mercy.

“In the parable of the talents, a particularly scandalous character comes into play” (K. Berger): an antisocial boss.

God treats us differently

First of all, he is a master who is not equal with his subordinates: “To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability” (Mt 25.15). The talent weighed around 34 kilos, and could be made of silver or gold: at today’s prices, counting silver at around 670 euros per kilo and gold at 52,000 euros per kilo, the owner gives one from 113,900 to 8,840,000 euros, to another from 45,560 to 3,536,000 euros, to the third from 22,780 to 1,768,000 euros: in any case, a big difference. If this master is the image of God, one immediately wonders why the Lord gives each person different abilities, and therefore different gifts.

A capitalist God?

When he returns, the owner asks for the accounts: the first two have doubled the capital. The third, who had only kept it without making it profitable, is harshly reprimanded and “thrown outside into the darkness” (Mt 25.30). God – as this provocative parable depicts him – is like a capitalist, like an unscrupulous financier, an exploiter.

God trusts us

But there are some wonderful lessons here. The first is that God is other than us. He leaves us completely free. He entrusts us with our field of action. He has faith in us. We who always wait for a God who continually intervenes in our individual and social history are reminded that the world is the space of our responsibility, of our personal commitment: it is we who must build the Kingdom of God in this world. Often, like the third servant, we blame God for the “injustice existing in the world, the responsibility for this evil is attributed to the Almighty when, in reality, it is the ineffectiveness of man that has generated so much misery that stands insultingly against God’s plan” (A. Fernandez).

Love has no measure

The second revelation is that love must have no measure, like God who is immense in generosity. As in every true love story, we are called to give ourselves beyond our limits. “God has given us his gifts so that we can live our lives with our hearts dilated by joy and communion with him already down here: already now we are people loved by the Lord. He does not want the return of what he has given us, but that we live like him, in turn donors of peace, freedom, justice, joy” (L. Zani).

“There is no fear in love”

The third teaching is that, as John will say, “in love there is no fear” (1 Jn 4:18). The third servant was “afraid” (Mt 25.25) of his master’s harshness. “Only a new relationship of trust and love with God, such as the one inaugurated by Jesus, makes man free from fear, gives him back the taste for creativity, initiative and risk; the man free to love is able to take God’s interests to heart and respond with audacity and courage to his generosity” (R. Fabris).

The superabundance of the prize

The ending of the song is also disconcerting. But “to those who consider the Kingdom as a most precious good, as an immeasurable treasure…, “it will be given” by God in a superabundant way; whoever instead hears the Gospel in a distracted way, evaluating it as a small thing among many others, will also find himself deprived of what he has or “believes he has”” (L. Monti).

Happy Mercy to all!

Anyone who would like to read a more complete exegesis of the text, or some insights, please ask me at


Spazio Spadoni

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