Fruitful Vineyard

Sunday 27 in Year A

Reflecting on Love, Grief, Loss, and Justice:
A Journey Through Poetry, Prophecy, and Gospel

Today’s sermon was a deep dive into the themes of love, grief, loss, and justice, as portrayed in love poetry, the writings of the prophet Isaiah, the psalm, and the gospel. 

Love Poetry and the Prophet Isaiah: A Tale of Grief and Loss

Fr Richard Healey began by reflecting on the grief and loss experienced by the Lord in the writings of the prophet Isaiah. The Lord, despite nurturing and protecting his vineyard, was met with the production of sour grapes. This poignant metaphor resonated deeply with me, as it mirrors the grief and loss we often experience in our lives when our efforts don’t yield the expected results.

This sense of grief and loss was further echoed in the psalm, written in the aftermath of the exile and destruction of the temple in Jerusalem. The speaker skillfully connected these ancient themes to the current situation in the world, emphasizing the urgent need for justice and integrity.

Small Changes, Big Impact: The Environment and Social Justice

Fr Richard then shifted focus to the impact of small changes or adjustments in our lives, and how they can unravel everything. They cited a report about the environment reaching a tipping point, a stark reminder of the consequences of our collective actions. Pope Francis’s words were also brought up, reminding us that we cannot continue to let injustice and bloodshed prevail.

The Parable of Jesus: An Opportunity for Repentance

Fr Richard then discussed a parable told by Jesus to the religious leaders in Jerusalem. This parable emphasized the opportunity for repentance and the importance of embracing the way of justice. This story served as a powerful reminder that it’s never too late to change our ways and strive for a more just and equitable world.

Personal Reflections: Embracing Faithfulness

In a moment of vulnerability, the speaker shared their own sense of grief and loss, reflecting on their personal sinfulness and the ways they have turned away from God. This confession resonated with me, as it reminded me of my own shortcomings and the need for constant self-improvement.

Fr Richard concluded by inviting us, the listeners, to allow God to nurture us once again. They urged us to rebuild what has been destroyed in our lives and to embrace faithfulness to God. This call to action left me feeling hopeful and inspired, ready to make the necessary changes in my life.


This sermon was a profound exploration of love, grief, loss, and justice, drawing from love poetry, the prophet Isaiah, the psalm, and the gospel. It served as a reminder of the power of small changes, the importance of repentance, and the need for personal reflection. As we navigate through our own journeys, may we remember these lessons and strive to live with justice, integrity, and faithfulness.

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