The Workers who came Late

Friends in the Lord, today we read about these workers who were hired late, but still received the same wage.  As with many of the gospels, Our Lord is here revealing a few different things.   
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One thing he is referring to, says St. Gregory the Great, is the history of salvation.  The morning of that workday represents the early beginning of the world, and so it is the time from Adam up to Noah. The vineyard is God’s kingdom on earth, and the promised payment of the wage represents salvation. God’s covenant with Adam was the agreed-upon wage; but the rest who came later – they had no contract with God and no covenant.   
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The third hour of the day, is the period from Noah up to Abraham, the sixth hour, is from Abraham up to Moses, and the ninth hour is from Moses to the coming of Christ.  So the workers at the third, sixth, and ninth hours  represent the ancient Jewish people, chosen in the beginning to serve the Lord in the vineyard.  
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But at the eleventh hour the Gentiles are called, and that is us.  Now these Gentiles for so many ages of the world did not labor for the Lord, they stood by idle.   But notice what they say to the Master: ‘No one has hired us; and it is true: neither the Patriarchs, nor Abraham,  nor Noah, or the prophets  had ever come to the Gentiles to invite them. The Gentiles say: ‘No one has preached to us this way of life; so finally the Gentiles are sent also, into the vineyard.   
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When the time of payment comes, this is the end of the world.  And so the Lord said to the steward, that is, to the Holy Spirit,  ‘Call the labors, and give them their wage.  Now it turns out that they are all able to obtain the same wage, that is, salvation.  Thus says, St. Gregory the Great.   
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Most of us were called to work in God’s vineyard from childhood, in our baptism.  But we should keep our eyes out for those we might know, who are late in life, still searching for God.  RCIA begins this fall. It is an opportunity for Catholics to review their faith, or for people to complete their sacraments; but it is also a chance for those who want to learn more about becoming Catholic.  So let us keep our eyes open, and maybe invite someone into the kingdom.   

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