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ML
2019-07-14, 13:51
I have been doing the 9 day Novena and had prayed to St Jude to help my son with his school as well as his anxiety issues. He is now doing better. Tha...
Mei
2019-07-06, 19:55
I am writing my testimony on my first 9-day Novena and my first 40-day prayer to St. Jude Thaddeus. But I have to tell you a brief story on where I a...

17 November Sunday

33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time,

The Word

Mal 3,19-20 / 2 Thes 3,7-12 / Lk 21,5-19

 

Mal 3,19-20

For the day is coming, blazing like an oven,

when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble,

And the day that is coming will set them on fire,

leaving them neither root nor branch,

says the LORD of hosts.

But for you who fear my name, the sun of justice

will arise with healing in its wings;

 

2 Thes 3,7-12

Brothers and sisters:

For you know how one must imitate us. For we did not act in a disorderly way among you, nor did we eat food received free from anyone. On the contrary, in toil and drudgery, night and day we worked, so as not to burden any of you. Not that we do not have the right. Rather, we wanted to present ourselves as a model for you, so that you might imitate us. In fact, when we were with you, we instructed you that if anyone was unwilling to work, neither should that one eat. We hear that some are conducting themselves among you in a disorderly way, by not keeping busy but minding the business of others. Such people we instruct and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to work quietly and to eat their own food.

 

Lk 21,5-19

While some people were speaking about how the temple was adorned with costly stones and votive offerings, Jesus said, “All that you see here—the days will come when there will not be left a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down.” Then they asked him, “Teacher, when will this happen? And what sign will there be when all these things are about to happen?” 

He answered, “See that you not be deceived, for many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am he,’ and ‘The time has come.’  Do not follow them!  When you hear of wars and insurrections, do not be terrified; for such things must happen first, but it will not immediately be the end.” Then he said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be powerful earthquakes, famines, and plagues from place to place; and awesome sights and mighty signs will come from the sky.”

Jesus instructs us: “Before all this happens, however, they will seize and persecute you, they will hand you over to the synagogues and to prisons, and they will have you led before kings and governors because of my name.  It will lead to your giving testimony.  Remember, you are not to prepare your defense beforehand, for I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute.  You will even be handed over by parents, brothers, relatives, and friends, and they will put some of you to death.  You will be hated by all because of my name, but not a hair on your head will be destroyed. By your perseverance you will secure your lives.”

 

In other words…

 

 

I remember these words: “Israel is the centre of the world, because there lies Jerusalem. Jerusalem is the centre of Israel, because there stood the Temple. The Temple was the centre of the Jerusalem, because there the “Holy of  Holies” was to be found. The people of  Israel near and far went to the Temple to pray. It was built three times. The first, by Solomon (1000 B.C.) destroyed by the Babylonians; the second, after the return from exile (537 B.C.) destroyed by Antiochus; the third, by Herod the Great (19 B.C.). Its construction cost a fortune. According to the Bible it took him 40 years to complete. (Actually it was finished 64 A.D). It was made of white limestone, ornamented with gold plating and golden pinnacles. They said: “The one, who has not seen the temple of Jerusalem, has failed to see the most wonderful thing in the world.”

 

Jesus’ listeners were therefore shocked when he said: “All that you see here – the days will come when there will not be left a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down.” The prophecy of Jesus aroused the anger of the Jews. At his trial before the Tribunal of Pilate, his words about the Temple were used as part of the made up accusations levelled against him. None believed his words. But in 70 A.D. the Romans came and destroyed Jerusalem razing the Temple to the ground. What remained is now called the “Wailing Wall”.

 

The destruction of the Temple shows that the words of Jesus would never pass away. It also predicts that everything in this world will ultimately pass away. What Jesus foretold happened. He announced his death and resurrection and it happened. Therefore the promise of his second coming is also a certainty. On the last Day, he will judge the living and the dead. In the first reading we heard the words of Malachi (538 B.C.). He talked about fire, blazing like an oven to punish evildoers and another fire, called Sun of Justice whose rays are healing the just ones.

 

Jesus did not answer WHEN it will happen. What matters most is HOW to live while waiting for the last days. Christians must always be on the alert and always do what is good in the eyes of the Lord. May we remind ourselves always of the need to pray for our brothers and sisters whose lives are in constant threat because of their faith. Very sadly, persecutions continue in many parts of the Middle East, North Africa and Asia. Jesus said: “Your perseverance will secure your lives.” The Lord will be with those who suffer in his name. He assures their final victory.

 

– Fr. Xene Sanchez, SVD (D.R. Congo)