- Today's theme speaks of the end, this same theme will be taken again during Advent.
- We may see it also as a way to make us understand the emptiness of luxury, riches.
- It is an exhortation to be always ready for the coming of the Lord, to wait for him with love and enthusiasm.
THE BOOK OF THE PROPHET MALACHI
v This book is found at the end of the Old Testament.
v But what we consider a name is only a title which means "the messenger"
v The author is unknown
v From some words and expressions in the text we deduce that it was written in the V century before Christ, and before the reformation of Ezra and Nehemiah between 480 y 450 B.C.
v The temple has been rebuilt and worship takes place in it again.
v The author denounces the worship the priests offer in the Temple, it is empty, without surrendering to the Lord, on a routine basis.
v He sees in the spiritual purification of the worship the strength and the source of renewal.
FIRST READING : Mal 3:19-20a Ordinary Time
ü The day comes blazing like and oven, and on that day the proud and all evil doers will be stubble.
ü When the Lord is present he destroys in us everything that is pride, vanity, lack of love. We feel like the tree without the branches of our vanity, without the roots of our false security in ourselves
ü The day of the Lord is neither a day of destruction of the human being, nor of fear, it is the day of the blessing by means of which our Father God cleanses us from all our impurities which do not allow us to reflect our Father's kind face.
ü It is like a tender mother which cleans and dresses up her little child who has get him or herself dirtied playing.
ü The day of the Lord is a day of blessing, which each one of us should wish present in his or her life to be able to eliminate from ourselves all that keeps us apart from Him and from one another
RESPONSORIAL PSALM 98: 5-6. 7-8. 9
THE LORD COMES TO RULE THE WORLD WITH JUSTICE
Sing praise to the Lord with the harp
with the harp and melodious song
with trumpets and the sound of the horn
sing joyfully before the King the Lord
Let the sea and what fills it resound
the world and those who dwell in it
let the rivers clap their hands
the mountains shout with them for joy
Before the Lord for he comes
'for he comes to rule the earth
he will rule the world with justice
and the peoples with equity
Ø This psalm is an invitation to the whole created world to sing with joy the presence of God in its midst.
Ø And it is also an invitation to sing because the Lord governs with justice, he brings justice among us.
Ø Those of us who thirst for justice among us, who long for the differences among us to be eliminated because we are all brothers and sisters children of the one and only Father, we are invited to join the song of joy of creation.
Ø Also those of us who long for that creation: plants, animals and everything in the created world be respected and taken care of, since they are also the work of our Father we are all invited to rejoice with the presence of the Lord.
Ø But this will only happen when we love him unconditionally, above everything and everyone, when we trust in him, knowing that his love is without end.
GOSPEL Lk 21:5-19
Some are fascinated to see the beauty and the riches of the temple, and they say it aloud.
Jesus, as always, will surprise them, he says that a day will come when all that beauty will be destroyed.
The material aspect of the temple, its stones will be destroyed, and also its spiritual centrality in the worship of the people of the Old Covenant.
They might have thought that this was not possible, since the temple was the real presence of the God among his people, it was the security in his protection over them.
And they want to know when this will happen
Jesus does not satisfy their curiosity, and does not give any concrete answer, it is enough for them to know that it will happen, when, it is not for them to know.
After that he tells them not to believe anyone who will come in his name, but instead to hold fast to faith in his words and in the Father's love, in the word he says to us in the sacred book of life and in the sacred book of the Bible.
What he has said to them is not imminent, but yes there will be natural phenomena which scare us: hurricanes, earthquakes, fires, and many others, but this is not the sign of the end.
there will also be wars, hatred among peoples, but this is not the end.
even more, they will be persecuted by their own relatives, they will be handed over to tribunals, condemned to death, but this is not the end.
Jesus in these words eliminates the distance in different moments in time, because he speaks of the destruction of the temple which happened in the year 70, and also he speaks about things that have happened along the human race journey through history, and are still happening.
It is as if he was looking at a large canvas with threads of different colors which make up to work of art. When the work of art is finished we do not know when each one of the threads was introduced in the canvas, neither what part of the work of art was made first.
We call this speech of Jesus scatological, which means it speaks of what will happen at the end.
The end will be beautiful since it will be the instauration in creation of the kingdom of God, a kingdom of justice and equity. Then finally we will be one family, a family of different peoples who will love and respect each other, and all together we will experience the fatherly embrace of the Father of Jesus, our Father God
But while we wait for this to happen, Jesus invites us to be perseverant in seeking the good, persevering in the way which leads us to him, and persevering in seeking and welcoming all our brothers and sisters to journey together.
Come soon, Lord Jesus!!!
SECOND READING 2 Tes 3:7-12v The author of this letter invites his community to live from its work, to not be a burden for anyone, not acting like busy bodies.
v He reminds them how he lived among them, how he worked to take care of his needs, to give them an example, maybe he wants to say to teach them with his own way of life.
v And he adds that he could have asked them for help, since the laborer is entitled to receive its recompense, as we read in another letter of Paul
v Those who are busy doing nothing, he urges them to eat their bread working quietly, but if they do not want to work, it is very simple they should not eat either.
v But he says something that we need all of us who are on the other side of the pendulum, who work too much, so much that we do not have time to really live our life.
v He says "work quietly," I think this is an invitation for us, an invitation to seek a healthy equilibrium between working to earn our food and to enjoy and cultivate the values of human relationships, especially in the family.
I left with my companion on January 28, 1851 (at this time of writing, it is just six years ago. Who could tell me then the many things I have lived!), not knowing where we would go, nor what would happen to me, not even in what house we could stay at the moment . (Such abandonment in his divine providence is what the Lord wanted from me in this occasion). Because from the beginning I told my confessor that, in case it is decided that I leave, in no way did I want to go home because I no longer consider it mine from the day I left it to enter the convent, the house of my Heavenly Father. Venerable María Antonia París, Foundress of the Claretian Missionary Sisters, 108-109
Because I always went on foot, I would fall in with mule-drivers and ordinary folk, and so I had a chance to talk with them about God and instruct them in their religion. This had the added advantage of helping take our minds off the road and giving us a great deal of consolation. Once when I was traveling from Banolas to Figueras to preach a mission, I had to cross a river that had a large boulder in the middle.
A large plank led from one side to the boulder, and another led from the boulder to the other side. I was crossing the river with some other people during a heavy gale. The wind blew so violently that it carried away the plank in front of me, as well as the man who was standing on it, and threw both into the river. There I was, stranded on that boulder in the middle of the river, leaning on my walking stick and fighting the blast, until a stranger waded the river, hoisted me on his shoulders, and carried me to the other side. I continued my journey but had to fight a wind so fierce that it blew me off the road more than once. Anyone who has traveled through Ampurdan knows what a wind races through the place--enough to make the sandy hills of Pegu shift their place. .Saint Anthony Mary Claret, Founder of the Claretian Missionary Sisters, Autobiography 460.
CLARET, Antonio María Claret, Autobiografía.
PAGOLA, José A. Following in the Footsteps of Jesus. Meditations on the Gospels for Year C.
PARIS, María Antonia, Autobiografía
RAVASI, Gianfranco, Según las Escrituras, Año C.
La Biblia de Nuestro Pueblo . Luis Alonso Schökel.