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Gospel reflection

September 18, 2016: Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sister Teresa Costello gives a neck and back massage to Sister Eileen Clare Goetzen at Providence Health Care at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods.

(Read more about the Sisters of Providence in Ministry stories here.)

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 the steward said, ‘And you, how much do you owe?’ He replied, ‘One hundred kors of wheat.’ The steward 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 are the children of light.
I tell you, make friends for yourselves with dishonest wealth, so that when it fails, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings. The person who is trustworthy in very small matters is also trustworthy in great ones; and the person who is dishonest in very small matters is also dishonest in great ones. If, therefore, you are not trustworthy with dishonest wealth, who will trust you with true wealth? If you are not trustworthy with what belongs to another, who will give you what is yours?
No servant can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other.
You cannot serve both God and mammon.” (Luke 16:1-13)


The unjust servant in today’s gospel, wasted his time and abilities seeking what made his life comfortable and easy. Instead of fulfilling his duties as the master’s steward, he was caught up in his own greed. We see the same scenario played out in our communities and our world today. The poor and marginalized are forgotten, and dismissed, and the majority of our societies have become apathetic to the huge gap that is created. God has called each one of us to be good stewards, of our earth and of its people, entrusting us to care for all.


How are we good stewards? What are some of the steps we could take in becoming more aware of those who are living in poverty, or on the margins of our society? What might be our response?

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Connie Schnapf

Providence Associate Connie Schnapf is a wife, mother and grandmother. She worked for nearly 30 years as a parish director of religious education. She currently works part time at WNIN Public Radio and TV as their receptionist and continues to offer spiritual direction to others. Connie and her husband live in Newburgh, Indiana.

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