Cultivating the Vineyard

Cultivating the Vineyard

BY MILES TIEMEYER | October 9, 2023
Sunday’s Readings

Yesterday’s Gospel sees Jesus’ rebuke of religious leaders who have received the vineyard of Israel but have misused and abused that trust from God. This parable is a warning for those in positions of authority, whether large or small. Just as the owner tasks the tenants with caring for the vineyard, God tasks us with caring for and bringing forth the kingdom of God. God asks us to harvest the fruits of the vineyard that he has sent us all to work in.

Any person in a position of authority, large or small, is open to temptations of self-interested leadership compared to the interest of God. This parable teaches us how to lead in all that we do. We must lead through service. Authority and leadership are a service given to the Kingdom of God. Our leadership should reflect the kingdom of God’s care for the well-being of all and the dissemination of the good news of the Gospel.

Cultivating the Vineyard

As someone who has been a student or employee of a Jesuit school for the last 11 years, I’ve grown used to hearing the phrase, “Men and Women for Others.” We educate our students to reach for Fr. Arrupe’s goal and tell them it means a life of service. We encourage them to participate in the Labre homelessness outreach or Big Brothers and Big Sisters programs. 

I was recently reminded that we often ask our students for better. We need to remind ourselves and our students that we are not asking them to be better for others, but to do better for others. Too often we place the emphasis on our students reaching some kind of “milestone” as people for others. Instead we should focus on their continued commitment to cultivating the vineyard, the kingdom of God. Our call to be men and women for others should be a service given to the kingdom of God, not simply another title given to our graduates.

For Reflection:

  • How can you be a “person for others”? How might you be called to cultivate the vineyard and bring about the kingdom of God?
3 replies
  1. Dr. Eileen Quinn Knight
    Dr. Eileen Quinn Knight says:

    Miles asks us a good question “How can you be a “person for others”?” To me being a person for others starts with recognizing the gifts God has given to each one of us. In recognizing the gits we are given we recognize the call of God to be a person for others. We ask God to use the gifts we have in service to others. All others. My daughter in law is so generous with her gifts and reaches out to help the migrants as she knows how important that is to the kingdom of God. She is also aware of the graces necessary to continue with the Synod of Synodality and she rightly studies and prays with me about what is happening.She also serves her family by making sure the needs of neices and nephews as well as sons and daughters-in-law are attended to. She is a woman for others and calls all of us to do so today and everyday..

  2. sonja
    sonja says:

    Being a person for others is following His call to work in His vineyard. Sometimes it is using our innate talents and gifts. Other times it means courageously stepping into the unknown. But when we trust in Him, at each turn in the road, the way ahead becomes clear and a new door opens.

  3. Dr.Cajetan Coelho
    Dr.Cajetan Coelho says:

    Teaching is a humble mission and yet a noble profession. Preparing students to be men and women for others during studies and beyond studies is preparing them for life.


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