Reflecting on Jesus’ parable of the ungrateful and greedy tenants who kill the landowner’s servants and eventually even kill his son, the Pope warned that “at the root of conflicts there is always ungratefulness and greedy thoughts.”
Ingratitude gives rise to greed, and a “progressive sense of rebellion,” which leads to seeing situations “in a distorted way,” Pope Francis said, in reflecting on the day’s Gospel before praying the midday Angelus in St. Peter’s Square.
“And from being tenants, they become assassins. It is a whole process,” the Pope said. “And many times, this process takes place in the hearts of people, even in our hearts.”
Pope Francis said that Jesus uses the parable to teach us what happens when we deceive ourselves into thinking that we do things on our own, and forget that all good comes from God.
This lack of gratitude to God means that the person “stops letting himself be loved, and finds himself a prisoner of his own greed.”
This process is ugly, and many times it happens to us. Let us think seriously about this. This in turn gives rise to many dissatisfactions and recriminations, so many misunderstandings and so many feelings of envy; and, driven by resentment, the person can fall headlong into a spiral of violence. Yes, dear brothers and sisters, ungratefulness generates violence, it takes peace away, and makes us speak with yelling, without peace, while a simple “thank you” can bring back peace!
The Holy Father made a call to use the three little phrases that he often promotes as the secret to peaceful, harmonious relationships: Please, thank you, and I’m sorry.
“So, let us ask ourselves,” he invited: “Am I aware that life and the faith are gifts I have received. Am I aware that I myself am a gift? Do I believe that everything comes from the grace of the Lord?”
Let us ask ourselves if these small words, “thanks,” “please,” “pardon me, I’m sorry,” are present in our lives. Do I know how to thank, to say “thanks”? Do I know how to forgive, to ask for forgiveness? Do I know how not to be invasive – “please”? … May Mary, whose soul glorifies the Lord, help us make gratitude the light that dawns daily in our hearts.