“Everyone one is invited”. What a warm statement that is. Samsung Digital, the high tech communications company used this as a marketing slogan for a new ad campaign, as they invited the world to step up and into the digital age of telecommunications. Samsung did not invent the phrase. People have used this phrase for years trying to cast a wide net for their event or business. Reading our own Parish bulletin for the meetings that are to take place, the last line says “All are welcome”. What is the motive behind theall inclusive invitation? Is it anxiety that someone would be overlooked, or that enough people would not turn up. What would happen if everyone accepted the invitation? Do those who say “Everyone is invited” really mean it? What would they think if everyone took them up on the invitation?
This weekend’s Gospel features a parable told by Jesus with that bold invitation “Everyone is invited”. In the parable He tells of a King who invites a select list of close friends and family to the wedding of his son, an invitation they either ignore or refuse. In different ways each of us is called to do something similar in our relationship with God. Failure in life, is to miss recognising God in the circumstances of our daily lives. It is the inability or the willingness to see the opportunity he offers to know him more clearly and to serve him more generously. The Jews of Christ’s time were blind to that opportunity and so lost out. In an attempt to alert them to what they were missing out on, Christ used the image of a marriage feast to which many of the guests failed to turn up to. They did not realise what they were missing. Some rejected the invitation to be part of God’s people and so lose out on eternal life. Others accepted the invitation at first but then refused to live as God asked and their loss is just as great. It is not that God withdraws the gift but that their selfish lifestyle prevents them from accepting his invitation. People consider their plans, their priorities, their agendas more important than God’s invitation. The sober truth is that not
everyone responds to the invitation of God. We live in a world of cruel and evil people, but the invitation is always open. We are never beyond the reach of God’s love and forgiveness. We are all invited. Please RSVP ASAP.