As my generation of baby boomers, those born after World War II, begins to die, I read in the Wall Street Journal that there will be the greatest transfer of wealth in our country’s history. The recipients will be the baby bust generation, born after 1965; they are now in their 50’s. I’m already seeing at funerals families torn apart by the remainders of the estate and the reading of the will. It’s a painful example of greed. This is the issue of the Gospel this coming Sunday.

The lectionary skips the rest of Luke 11 and the first part of Luke 12. Beginning in Luke 11, 20, Jesus is at the home of a leading Pharisee for dinner. It is here that Luke arranges this question and teaching about greed and the reign of God. Jesus has already critiqued the “leaven of the Pharisees” parallel with teachings about the cost of discipleship. He will return to the thematic material of this Gospel’s question at the end of the dinner.

Here we have the parable of the rich man’d harvest, the opening of Qoheleth (Ecclesiates), and St. Paul’s contrast between the earthly and heavenly in Colossians. The reading work well together, and are all a part of the question of wealth, greed, and inheritance.

Alan Hartway

Theological Studies at Catholic Theological Union, Chicago IL; Master of Fine Arts, Poetics, at Naropa University, Boulder CO 1996; Master of Arts, Greek Classics, University of Colorado, Boulder CO 2012; Taught at Naropa University from 1999 through 2015; Chair of Interdisciplinary Studies from 2007-2015; Member of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, Kansas City Province since 1974; Pastor at Guardian Angel Catholic Church, Mead, CO, ministry from 2007-2020 Currently Retired

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