From the Word of the Day
Asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, he said in reply, “The coming of the kingdom of God cannot be observed, and no one will announce, ‘Look, here it is,’ or, ‘There it is.’ For behold, the kingdom of God is among you.” (Luke 17, 20-21)
The Pharisees thought that the Kingdom of God could arrive only when the people had reached the perfect observance of God’s Law. For them, the coming of the Kingdom would be God’s reward for the good behavior of the people. Jesus says the contrary. The coming of the Kingdom cannot be observed as one observes the coming of earthly kings. Even the disciples expected the Kingdom of God to arrive in a spectacular way and thus they asked, like the Pharisees, “When the Kingdom of God would come.
Jesus does not respond by giving them a precise date and time, but inverts the way of seeing things, saying that the Kingdom is already among us and that we must only await the return of the Son of God. For Jesus, the Kingdom of God has already come! It is already in our midst, independently of our efforts or merits.
The Kingdom of God is already among us in the holiness of each day, in the holiness of ordinary life, in simplicity, and in the daily cross of the many people taking care of their family; parents who tend their sick children; young people and children who discover the beauty of life and take care so that their heart will not lose joy; many men and women who struggle with the power of faith to build a culture of life and of peace; many courageous people who, in spite of suffering, continue to smile and go on sowing life.
Lord Jesus, help us to open our eyes, ears, mind, and heart to faith in order to intuit Your saving and sanctifying presence because the Kingdom is already among us.
The voice of Pope Francis
The Kingdom of God is like a mother who rears and feeds, who gives herself so that her children may have food and a home, according to the Lord’s example. Today is a day to ask for the grace of docility to the Holy Spirit. Many times, we are docile to our whims and our judgments. ‘I do what I want…’ the Kingdom cannot grow like this; we do not grow. It is docility to the Holy Spirit that makes us grow and transform, like the leaven and the seed. May God give us all the grace of this docility. (October 25, 2016).