Word of the day
Reading of the day
The days are coming, says the LORD,
when I will fulfill the promise
I made to the house of Israel and Judah.
In those days, in that time,
I will raise up for David a just shoot ;
he shall do what is right and just in the land.
In those days Judah shall be safe
and Jerusalem shall dwell secure;
this is what they shall call her:
“The LORD our justice.”
1 THES 3:12—4:2
Brothers and sisters:
May the Lord make you increase and abound in love
for one another and for all,
just as we have for you,
so as to strengthen your hearts,
to be blameless in holiness before our God and Father
at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his holy ones. Amen.
Finally, brothers and sisters,
we earnestly ask and exhort you in the Lord Jesus that,
as you received from us
how you should conduct yourselves to please God
and as you are conducting yourselves
you do so even more.
For you know what instructions we gave you through the Lord Jesus.
Gospel of the day
LK 21:25-28, 34-36
Jesus said to his disciples:
“There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars,
and on earth nations will be in dismay,
perplexed by the roaring of the sea and the waves.
People will die of fright
in anticipation of what is coming upon the world,
for the powers of the heavens will be shaken.
And then they will see the Son of Man
coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
But when these signs begin to happen,
stand erect and raise your heads
because your redemption is at hand.
“Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy
from carousing and drunkenness
and the anxieties of daily life,
and that day catch you by surprise like a trap.
For that day will assault everyone
who lives on the face of the earth.
Be vigilant at all times
and pray that you have the strength
to escape the tribulations that are imminent
and to stand before the Son of Man.”
Words of the Holy Father
When Jesus speaks of this calamity in another passage, he tells us that it will be a profanation of the temple, a profanation of the faith, of the people. It will be an abomination. It will be the abomination of desolation. Prohibition against worship. This is the centre of this ending. Christians who suffer through times of persecution, through times when worship is prohibited, are a prophetic sign of what will happen to everyone.
Yet we should not be afraid, God asks us for faithfulness and patience. Faithfulness like that of Daniel, who was faithful to his God and who worshipped him to the end. And patience, for every hair on your head is counted, as the Lord has promised. This week, it will good for us to reflect on this general apostasy called the prohibition of worship, and to ask themselves: “Do I worship God? Do I adore Jesus Christ the Lord? Or do I do so by halves and play games with the prince of this world? Worshipping to the very end with trust and fidelity is the grace we should ask for this week. (Santa Marta Mass, 28 November 2013)