Monday, November 6, 2017

Nov. 12, 2017 - The Dead in Christ Will Rise

The Thirty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time  A

Reading I:  Wisdom 6: 12-16

Psalm:  63  

Reading II:  1 Thessalonians 4: 13-18

Gospel:  Matthew 25: 1-13

This week, I am focusing on the letters of St. Paul to the Thessalonians. St. Paul reassures his congregation about their departed loved ones. He tells them not to grieve like those with no hope.

St. Paul reminds his hearers that if they believe that Jesus rose from the dead, they should recall his words at the Last Supper: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith in God, have faith also in me. In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and take you to myself.” (John 14: 1-3).  Through this scripture reference, St. Paul encourages them to “Comfort one another.”

A while ago, I was speaking with a person who does not believe in an afterlife.
I was deeply saddened for the person. It also hit me deeply to even consider not being able to be with Jesus at the end of my life. I have longed to see him for most of my life, and I would be devastated if that were not to happen when my life
here is over.

This experience also made me appreciate my gift of faith all the more. How different my life would be if I would not be able to look forward to seeing the face of my Savior when my earthly life is complete! How would I deal with the great suffering I observe in the lives of others if I did not have hope that they would have happiness in the life to come?

As Catholic Christians, we also believe in the Communion of Saints. There is a connection between those who have departed this life and those of us still here.
We can pray for and support one another because love remains.

In addition, we believe that Jesus gave us his mother as our heavenly mother to be our intercessor and comfort in the difficulties of our lives. She is also a model for us in her willingness to accept and act on the “Will of the Father”.

There are many paths to follow which lead to God. I respect the different paths of others, but I am very deeply grateful for the one which my Shepherd has prepared for me.

 Reflection Question:   How can I show gratitude for my gift of the Catholic
Faith?  How can I share it with others?

Spanish Translation of Reflection Above...

Los Muertos en Cristo se Levantarán

Esta semana, me estoy enfocando en las cartas de San Pablo a los Tesalonicenses. San Pablo le asegura a su congregación acerca de sus seres queridos fallecidos. Él les dice que no se entristezcan como aquellos sin esperanza.

San Pablo recuerda a sus oyentes que si creen que Jesús resucitó de entre los muertos, deberían recordar sus palabras en la Última Cena: “No dejen que se turbe vuestro corazón”. Tienes fe en Dios, ten fe también en mí. En la casa de mi Padre hay muchas moradas. Si no hubiera sido así, ¿te habría dicho que voy a preparar un lugar para ti? Y si voy y preparo un lugar para ti, volveré y te llevaré a mí mismo”. (Juan 14: 1-3) A través de esta referencia de las Escrituras, San Pablo les anima a “Consolarse unos a otros”.

Hace un tiempo, estaba hablando con una persona que no cree en una vida futura. Estaba profundamente triste por la persona. También me golpeó profundamente incluso considerar no poder estar con Jesús al final de mi vida. He deseado verlo la mayor parte de mi vida, y estaría devastado si eso no sucediera cuando mi vida aquí ha terminado. Esta experiencia también me hizo apreciar aún más mi don de fe. ¡Qué diferente sería mi vida si no pudiera esperar ver el rostro de mi Salvador cuando mi vida terrenal esté completa! ¿Cómo lidiaría con el gran sufrimiento que observo en las vidas de los demás si no tuviera la esperanza de que tendrían felicidad en la vida venidera?

Como cristianos católicos, también creemos en la Comunión de los Santos. Hay una conexión entre aquellos que han abandonado esta vida y aquellos de nosotros que todavía estamos aquí. Podemos rezar y apoyarnos unos a otros porque el amor permanece.

Además, creemos que Jesús nos dio a su madre como nuestra madre celestial para ser nuestra intercesora y consolarnos en las dificultades de nuestras vidas. Ella también es un modelo para nosotros en su disposición a aceptar y actuar en la “Voluntad del Padre”.

Hay muchos caminos a seguir que conducen a Dios. Respeto los diferentes caminos de los demás, pero estoy muy agradecido por el que mi Pastor
me preparó.

 Pregunta de reflexión:   ¿Cómo puedo mostrar gratitud por mi regalo del católico Fe? ¿Cómo puedo compartirlo con otros?


  1. The feasts of All Saints and All Souls are two of my favorite celebrations of the Church because I am reminded of what I aspire to be, as I remember those beloved souls who have gone before me. I recall being taught by a Mercy nun, Sr. Norman, that a saint is someone who is holy and faithful and that we are all called to be saints. The Church encourages us to imitate the saints and to follow their example of holiness and we get to ask them for their help in doing so when we pray. I cherish the term Communion of Saints because it holds the treasure of fellowship with the men and women who were driven by the love of God during their lifetime. An article from “Our Sunday Visitor” website states the following regarding the mutuality of spiritual assistance we can enjoy with the saints in heaven. “The perfected saints, having a share in God’s own nature, have a share in His perfect love. They love those of us still on earth as God loves us. They want to help us; they want to see us reach heaven as well. So they have the desire to assist us in any way they can…The intercession of the saints is simply one way in which Christ’s body with its members joined and held together builds itself up in love. When we help one another, we display the love of God in which we share.”
    I take this time to remember the souls of my beloved relatives, friends and others who have died. I pray that they are in eternity with God and that if they are in purgatory that my prayers and good deeds will assist them. I likewise pray that they will intercede for me. I find this support so spiritually uplifting as we devote attention to our precious souls. Novelist Léon Bloy wrote, “There is only one sadness – not to be a saint.” We can be hopeful to join their ranks by living our ordinary daily lives in reverence of God and all of His creation.
    This week’s gospel reminds us to be prepared for we know not when the Bridegroom will arrive. Living in continual awareness of Christ – sometimes referred to as living in the Present Moment – will assure us of not falling asleep and of not having the oil of good works required for entering the bridal chamber. Living in close communion with Jesus is for us on earth a foretaste of heaven. Asking the saints and the holy souls for their help so that we remember to “do life” with this consciousness is an indescribable blessing.
    Pat C., ASBS

  2. Sr. Therese M. Warner, SBSNovember 7, 2017 at 9:38 AM

    How very true! The blissful anticipation of meeting God Face-to-face in heaven gives us deep joy even in this life
    when we think and pray about it.

    Of course, the wonders and marvels of the heavenly kingdom are probably far beyond any complete description through human words. However, our Catechism of the Catholic
    Church presents some deeply impressive facts and reflections. The following are excerpts:

    "Heaven is the ultimate end and fulfillment of the deepest human longings, the state of supreme, definitive happiness."
    (CCC 1024)

    "This mystery of blessed communion with God and all who are in Christ is beyond all human understanding. Scripture speaks of it in images (life, light, peace, wedding feast, wine of the kingdom, the Father's house, the heavenly Jerusalem, paradise)."
    (CCC 1027)

    "Because of transcendence, God can not be seen as He is, unless He Himself opens up this mystery to man's immediate contemplation and gives him capacity for it. The Church calls this contemplation of God in his heavenly glory 'The Beatific Vision'. How great will your glory and happiness be, to be allowed to see God, to be honored with sharing the joy of salvation and eternal light with Christ, your Lord and delight in the joy of immortality in the kingdom of heaven with the righteous and God's friends!" CCC 1028