Word of the day

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Thursday of the Twenty-first Week in Ordinary Time

Reading of the day

From the First Letter of St Paul the Apostle to the Thessalonians
1 Thes 3:7-13

We have been reassured about you, brothers and sisters,
in our every distress and affliction, through your faith.
For we now live, if you stand firm in the Lord.
What thanksgiving, then, can we render to God for you,
for all the joy we feel on your account before our God?
Night and day we pray beyond measure to see you in person
and to remedy the deficiencies of your faith.
Now may God himself, our Father, and our Lord Jesus
direct our way to you, and 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.

Gospel of the day

From the Gospel according to Matthew
Mt 24:42-51

Jesus said to his disciples:
"Stay awake!
For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.
Be sure of this: if the master of the house
had known the hour of night when the thief was coming,
he would have stayed awake
and not let his house be broken into.
So too, you also must be prepared,
for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.

"Who, then, is the faithful and prudent servant,
whom the master has put in charge of his household
to distribute to them their food at the proper time?
Blessed is that servant whom his master on his arrival finds doing so.
Amen, I say to you, he will put him in charge of all his property.
But if that wicked servant says to himself, 'My master is long delayed,'
and begins to beat his fellow servants,
and eat and drink with drunkards,
the servant's master will come on an unexpected day
and at an unknown hour and will punish him severely
and assign him a place with the hypocrites,
where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth."

Words of the Holy Father

The Lord comes: this is the root of our hope, the certainty that God’s comfort reaches us in the midst of the tribulations of the world, a comfort that does not consist of words but rather of presence, of his presence that comes among us. (…) But we may prefer the darkness of the world to the light of the Lord and we might answer, “no, I am not coming” to the Lord who invites us to go with him. (…) The Lord comes, but you prefer to follow the longing you feel; your brother knocks at your door, but he is a nuisance to you because he upsets your plans — and this is the attitude of consumerism. (…) Time is wasted on pastimes, but people have no time for God and for others. And when we live for things, things are never enough, greed increases and others get in the way and people end up feeling threatened and, as they are ever dissatisfied and angry, the level of hatred rises. (…) Jesus wants to reawaken us from all this. He does so with a verb: “Watch” (Mt 24:42). “Be careful, keep watch”. Watching was the task of the sentinel, who stayed awake to keep watch while everyone else was asleep. Keeping watch means not giving in to the sleep that enfolds everyone. In order to watch it is necessary to have a sure hope: that the night will not last for ever, that dawn will soon break. And so it is for us: God comes and his light will brighten even the thickest darkness. (Mass for Congolese community, 1 December 2019)