Tag Archives: Parable of the Sower

Prayer to the Sower

“Prayer to the Sower”
Luke 8:4-15 in a prayer couplet
Saturday of the Twenty-Fourth Week in Ordinary Time
©️2021 by Gloria M. Chang

When a large crowd gathered, with people from one town after another journeying to him, he spoke in a parable. “A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path and was trampled, and the birds of the sky ate it up. Some seed fell on rocky ground, and when it grew, it withered for lack of moisture. Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew with it and choked it. And some seed fell on good soil, and when it grew, it produced fruit a hundredfold.” After saying this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear.”

Then his disciples asked him what the meaning of this parable might be. He answered, “Knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of God has been granted to you; but to the rest, they are made known through parables so that ‘they may look but not see, and hear but not understand.’

“This is the meaning of the parable. The seed is the word of God. Those on the path are the ones who have heard, but the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts that they may not believe and be saved. Those on rocky ground are the ones who, when they hear, receive the word with joy, but they have no root; they believe only for a time and fall away in time of trial. As for the seed that fell among thorns, they are the ones who have heard, but as they go along, they are choked by the anxieties and riches and pleasures of life, and they fail to produce mature fruit. But as for the seed that fell on rich soil, they are the ones who, when they have heard the word, embrace it with a generous and good heart, and bear fruit through perseverance.

Luke 8:4-15

O Lord, protect your seed from thieves, storms and snares.
Nurture it in the soil of listening prayers.

The Parable of the Sower

“The Parable of the Sower”
Matthew 13:1-9 in a couplet
Wednesday of the Sixteenth Week in Ordinary Time
©️2021 by Gloria M. Chang

On that day, Jesus went out of the house and sat down by the sea. Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat down, and the whole crowd stood along the shore. And he spoke to them at length in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky ground, where it had little soil. It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep, and when the sun rose it was scorched, and it withered for lack of roots. Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it. But some seed fell on rich soil, and produced fruit, a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold. Whoever has ears ought to hear.”

Matthew 13:1-9

The Parable of the Sower Explained

“The Parable of the Sower Explained”
Matthew 13:18-23 in a tercet
Friday of the Sixteenth Week in Ordinary Time
©️2021 by Gloria M. Chang

“Hear then the parable of the sower. The seed sown on the path is the one who hears the word of the kingdom without understanding it, and the evil one comes and steals away what was sown in his heart. The seed sown on rocky ground is the one who hears the word and receives it at once with joy. But he has no root and lasts only for a time. When some tribulation or persecution comes because of the word, he immediately falls away. The seed sown among thorns is the one who hears the word, but then worldly anxiety and the lure of riches choke the word and it bears no fruit. But the seed sown on rich soil is the one who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and yields a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold.”

Matthew 13:18-23

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Seeds of the Logos

Vincent van Gogh, Sower, 1888

Friday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time (Year I)

Hebrews 10:32-39; Mark 4:26-34

The Word through whom the world came to be knew his creation intimately (John 1:3). Earth, air, soil, and water that composed his own body were fashioned in the beginning by the Spirit of God hovering over the face of the waters (Genesis 1:2). That same life-giving Spirit keeps the world continually in being and becoming like a never-ending song.

He said, “This is how it is with the kingdom of God; it is as if a man were to scatter seed on the land and would sleep and rise night and day and the seed would sprout and grow, he knows not how. Of its own accord the land yields fruit, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. And when the grain is ripe, he wields the sickle at once, for the harvest has come.”

Mark 4:26-29

Seeds of the Logos waft through the universe by the Breath of the Sower and grow by the mysterious life-giving energy of the Spirit. In the language of science, organic life emerged from inorganic matter though it knows not how. Spirit has not entered the vocabulary of science, but without it life’s mystery eludes empiricism. Spirit and matter interpenetrate, according to Genesis.

In Adam, organic life becomes conscious of itself as a person in communion with other persons and all living beings. Homo sapiens (“wise human being”) is matter awake. 

The Light, which enlightens everyone, scattered seeds of truth throughout the universe in preparation for his coming (John 1:9). All truth in the Law and the Prophets of the Old Testament and in pagan philosophy originated from the Logos and dispersed by the Spirit. Knowledge of divinity and the natural law are accessible to all (Romans 1:20; 2:14-15).

He said, “To what shall we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable can we use for it? It is like a mustard seed that, when it is sown in the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth. But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the sky can dwell in its shade.”

Mark 4:30-32

The mustard seed is the personal cosmos in the image of the Logos. Sown “in the beginning,” it grew inorganically, organically, and spiritually by the Breath of God. Seeds of wisdom (sapientia) prepared homo sapiens to receive the Word made flesh. 

Those who received the Word and became one with the Word followed the pattern of his life. 

Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit.

John 12:24

Remember the days past when, after you had been enlightened, you endured a great contest of suffering.

Hebrews 10:32

The seed of the Logos, growing into the theandric organism of the Blessed Trinity, must break to release the deifying energy of grace.

We are not among those who draw back and perish, but among those who have faith and will possess life.

Hebrews 10:39

-GMC

Intergenerational catechesis

Last night, after the 5 PM Mass, I took part in an intergenerational catechesis program at St. Mary’s, Colts Neck.  About two hundred came, full house, and I hear more wanted to get in but it was sold out.

About the spaghetti supper, which all enjoyed, the kids went with their teachers, and the adults came with me to the auditorium where I gave a presentation on the Parable of the Sower that Jesus used to teach people about God and the mysteries of life. The kids had the same parable presented to them by their teachers.

God is a passionate sower of seed, Jesus pointed out, and he used the beautiful land and sea of Galilee to illustrate God’s blessings. I used a short dvd on Gallilee watch?v=fW0YAszmLes&feature=youtu.be– still a beautiful land– to help see how Jesus might have taught this parable. Besides what it teaches about God, the parable also has lessons for life, for example, the patience of  God, the patience we need as life unfolds, the evil that can inhibit the seed’s growth, the lack of acceptance to the good seed.

Jesus’ own life among us was like a seed the grew and died and rose again.

The questions we asked the adults to discuss were:

  1. So, what blessings do you find in your life? Don’t forget, they may look small.
  2. Waiting for the seed to be sown and for it to grow demands a lot of patience.  Where do you see patience running out, around you and in yourself?

The  kids showed us an imaginative banner they created and their reflection on the parable.

A parish has five approaches for learning today: 1) the parish or intergenerational approach 2) the peer or age-specific approach 3) the home/family approach 4) the individual approach 5) the wider community approach. Parishes usually prefer an age-specific approach to faith formation. (School, religious ed for children, lectures, retreats for adults, etc…) Whatever approach you use you shouldn’t neglect the others.