Posted by: livingscripture | November 17, 2019

Last Sunday in Ordinary Time

FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD
33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time
November 17, 2019

WORD of the DAY
Some of his disciples were remarking about how the temple was adorned with beautiful stones and with gifts dedicated to God. But Jesus said, “As for what you see here, the time will come when not one stone will be left on another; every one of them will be thrown down.” “Teacher,” they asked, “when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are about to take place?” He replied: “Watch out that you are not deceived. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them. When you hear of wars and uprisings, do not be frightened. These things must happen first, but the end will not come right away.”… But not a hair of your head will perish. Stand firm, and you will win life.
(Luke 21: 5-9/18-19)

How shall I live this Word?

We arrived at the last Sunday of the liturgical year and we find ourselves faced with this apocalyptic language, which helps us to reflect and give back the possible question: “But is it the end?” “Will everything be destroyed?” Even what is most beautiful and precious, like the Temple for the Jews? All things are in labor and they go towards something that we do not know, but we are inserted into a universe in which everything is born, grows, reproduces, and dies. Jesus makes us look up, He asks us to confront ourselves not with the end of things, but with their purpose, or rather to learn to have eyes that help us see the true end. Everything carries a great secret inside, so we are not asked to stop at what we see, but to ask ourselves: “What is it teaching me, or does it want to teach me, what do I see, what involves me, sometimes even with so much suffering?” Jesus teaches us that all things are not the point of arrival; all things are a road, they are occasions to recognize that the Lord holds us close to His Heart so that not even a hair of our heads will be lost. All the sufferings are opportunities to feel God in our lives and opportunities to give testimony, only by knowing how to stay “in and under all things” by persevering, we will live with Jesus, for Jesus, and in Jesus and thus save our lives.

Lord Jesus, grant us certainty, and help us to repeat often in our day, that “all things work together for the good of those who love God” (Rom 8:28), so that everything may be lived to conform to You!

The voice of Pope Francis
We ask for the grace to hear the cry of those who live in stormy waters: the cry of the poor. It is the strangled cry of children who cannot come to light, of children who suffer from hunger, of children accustomed to the roar of bombs, rather than the cheerful shouts of games. It is the cry of discarded elders left alone. It is the cry of those who find themselves facing the storms of life without a friendly presence. It is the cry of those who must flee, leaving home and land without the certainty of a landing place. It is the cry of entire populations, also deprived of the huge natural resources at their disposal. It is the cry of the many Lazarus who weep, while a few short-lived ones feast on what in justice is for everyone. Injustice is the perverse root of poverty. The cry of the poor becomes stronger every day, but less heard every day. That cry is stronger every day, but every day is less heard, overwhelmed by the din of the few rich, who are less and less and always richer. … The Lord extends his hand: it is a gratuitous gesture, not due. This is how it is done. We are not called to do good only to those who love us. To reciprocate is normal, but Jesus asks us to go further (see Mt 5:46): to give to those who do not have to give back, that is, to love for free (see Lk 6,32-36). Let’s look at our days: among many things, do we do something for free, something for those who do not have to reciprocate? That will be our outstretched hand, our true wealth in heaven. Hold out your hand to us, Lord, grab us. Help us to love as you love yourself. Teach us to leave what passes, to encourage those around us, to give freely to those in need. Amen

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