My Dear Parishioners,
Have you ever wondered about the end of the world or more importantly what our response to such an event might be? The end of the world is a fascination shared by many people. Predictions about how and when the world might end are often commonplace in popular tabloids and magazines. In today’s Gospel, even Jesus offers a scenario as to how the world might end. He tells his disciples that the sun, moon, and stars will be in dismay; the seas will roar; and the heavens will be shaken. He warns that when all this happens the end is near. He then admonishes his listeners to remain alert and vigilant, steadfast in faith and persistent in strength.
If we know the world was going to end today, what would our priorities be in those last waning hours? What would be important and critical to accomplish in the time that was left? Upon a closer look, answers to such questions are offered in today’s Gospel.
If the world were to end today it would be important to reconcile any anger harbored towards anyone. We must strive and hope for peace and harmony at all times. Reconciliation cannot happen if anger is present. And so, in anticipation of the world ending, it is important to resolve those feelings of anger. It would also be important to find out if we owed anything to anyone. Perhaps not so much money or borrowed items but more so to ask if an apology, forgiveness or pardon was owed to someone in our lives.
Further, if the world were to end today, it would be important for each of us to ask: Did I, through my words and actions, contribute to the goodness and harmony of the world simply because it was the right thing to do? And finally, if the world were to end today, it would be important to recognize our belief in God. Did my actions and words, thoughts and desires indeed reveal a true and real belief and faith in God?
Advent is a time to look towards the end of time and the coming of Christ. It is a time of expectation and faith, of hope and confidence in the goodness of people; a time to recognize the presence of Christ as we look forward to commemorating his coming into the world and our lives. The readings today urge us to realize what is before our eyes, the LOVE OF GOD, and to encourage others to acknowledge this love as well. Our call is to be watchful and alert as we prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ here and now and his return at the end of time.
All God’s Blessings,