NOVEMBER 14. Ord Time B. Wk 33. Sun. Mk 13. 24-32
Jesus said to his disciples: ‘In those days, after the time of distress, the sun will be darkened, the moon will lose its brightness, the stars will come falling from heaven and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory; then too he will send the angels to gather his chosen from the four winds, from the ends of the world to the ends of heaven.
‘Take the fig tree as a parable: as soon as its twigs grow supple and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. So, with you when you see these things happening: know that he is near, at the very gates. I tell you solemnly, before this generation has passed away all these things will have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
‘But as for that day or hour, nobody knows it, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son; no one but the Father.’
A Jesus walks towards Jerusalem, and his Passion and Death, he seems to be warning his disciples of the need to prepare for their own deaths, after which they will be powerless to make any amendment to their lives. Their final judgement, at Jesus’ second coming, will be entirely dependent on how they conducted themselves during their time on earth.
“Then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory; and he will send the angels to gather his chosen from the four winds, from the ends of the world to the ends of heaven!”
One does not have to be very wise to realise this is an event on which we should remain very focused during our time in this world; - but sadly, what we find is that the majority of people give almost no attention, or preparation to it; - in fact they live in such a way that one would think the end of the world, and judgement is not going to take place?
We will certainly not be able to say we have not been warned; - “I tell you solemnly, before this generation has passed away all these things will have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. But as for that day or hour, nobody knows it, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son; no one but the Father!”
It is very hard to understand human behaviour in that we see our parents and friends all passing on to their deaths on a regular basis, and yet we continue to give little attention to the teachings and example of the Son of God; - who came to teach us not only how to attain eternal life, but also how to access divine grace to assist us with this goal!
And still the majority of people appear to live their earthly lives as if death was a non-event?
How our Creator must be offended by the coldness and indifference of his creatures to all he has done for us; - the very act of giving us life; - the beauty of the world; - the loving and merciful response to our sinfulness; - the sending of his Divine Son to become one of us in order to make reparation for our sins; - the Church; - our Faith; - the Sacraments; - Our Blessed Mother; - the example of the saints; - the gift of prayer; - the Scriptures, and the Gospels?
And how many there are who do not even acknowledge, or make us of, these divine gifts?
Gospel Acclamation Luke 21:36
Be watchful and pray constantly,
that you may be worthy to stand before the Son of Man.
Second reading Hebrews 10:11-14,18
When all sins have been forgiven, there can be no more sin-offerings
All the priests stand at their duties every day, offering over and over again the same sacrifices which are quite incapable of taking sins away. He, on the other hand, has offered one single sacrifice for sins, and then taken his place forever, at the right hand of God, where he is now waiting until his enemies are made into a footstool for him. By virtue of that one single offering, he has achieved the eternal perfection of all whom he is sanctifying. When all sins have been forgiven, there can be no more sin offerings.