Gospel Reflection for the 18th November
Signs and Wonders…
We may have read about or even seen people who walk up and down the streets carrying the sign, ‘the end of the world is near!’ This even happened at the time of Jesus. It seems that every age and generation has its fare share of ‘doomsday merchants.’ We see what is happening around our world today; earth quakes, volcanoes, famine and wars in so many countries and we wonder what’s happening, asking whether this is actually the end of the world. People often panic, become frightened; they turn to prayer and religion, they may even become more committed church goers, but is this accurate?
The most important line from the gospel today comes at the end, when Jesus tells us, ‘But as for the day or the hour, nobody knows it, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son; no one but the Father.’ Jesus says that nobody knows the hour, the day or time; but neither does he say anything about the month or the year! Then all the incorrect predications begin again and we are back where we started.
Difficult as this may be for us, rather than being overly concerned about when the world will end, perhaps it might be more fruitful if we could wonder about our own personal end. Our life is here is not permanent. We know that at some point and time we are going experience our own personal end, our own death. Can we prayerfully, without fear or panic ask ourselves how we are living our daily lives here and now? Am I even considering my own personal end? If we could somehow prayerfully face these difficult questions, perhaps we would be less likely to panic and wonder about the end of the world itself.
Our time here is free gift given to us by God. Nothing we have done or achieved has earned us our existence, and there is nothing we can do to guarantee our number of days. But it is not as cold and stark as it sounds. We are part of the Paschal Mystery; the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. Through the Pascal Mystery, the continual cycle of life, death and new life continues; we share in this and we are part of this. This is what we remember and celebrate at every Eucharist when we pray; ‘We proclaim your death, O Lord and profess your resurrection until you come again.’
Since our time here is limited, we are called to make the most it, enjoy our relationships with others and grow in our communion with God. My life is God’s gift to me; how I live my life is my gift to God and others. How am I living my ordinary daily life?
– Br Michael Moore OMI
Gospel: Mark 13:24-32 – Be prepared for the second coming of Christ
Jesus said to his disciples, “But in those days, after that suffering, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. Then they will see ‘the Son of Man coming in clouds’ with great power and glory. Then he will send out the angels, and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.
“From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he is near, at the very gates. Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. But about that day or hour no one knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”