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#Malalaman mo ba ang Takdang Oras Mo Dito?

Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reading 1 DN 12:1-3

In those days, I Daniel,
heard this word of the Lord:
“At that time there shall arise
Michael, the great prince,
guardian of your people;
it shall be a time unsurpassed in distress
since nations began until that time.
At that time your people shall escape,
everyone who is found written in the book.

“Many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake;
some shall live forever,
others shall be an everlasting horror and disgrace.

“But the wise shall shine brightly
like the splendor of the firmament,
and those who lead the many to justice
shall be like the stars forever.”

Responsorial PsalmPS 16:5, 8, 9-10, 11

R. (1) You are my inheritance, O Lord!
O LORD, my allotted portion and my cup,
you it is who hold fast my lot.
I set the LORD ever before me;
with him at my right hand I shall not be disturbed.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord!
Therefore my heart is glad and my soul rejoices,
my body, too, abides in confidence;
because you will not abandon my soul to the netherworld,
nor will you suffer your faithful one to undergo corruption.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord!
You will show me the path to life,
fullness of joys in your presence,
the delights at your right hand forever.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord!
 

Reading 2 HEB 10:11-14, 18

Brothers and sisters:
Every priest stands daily at his ministry,
offering frequently those same sacrifices
that can never take away sins.
But this one offered one sacrifice for sins,
and took his seat forever at the right hand of God;
now he waits until his enemies are made his footstool.
For by one offering
he has made perfect forever those who are being consecrated.

 

Where there is forgiveness of these,
there is no longer offering for sin.

Alleluia  LK 21:36

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Be vigilant at all times
and pray that you have the strength to stand before the Son of Man.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

 Gospel MK 13:24-32

Jesus said to his disciples:
“In those days after that tribulation
the sun will be darkened,
and the moon will not give its light,
and the stars will be falling from the sky,
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,
and then he will send out the angels
and gather his elect from the four winds,
from the end of the earth to the end of the sky.

“Learn a lesson from the fig tree.
When its branch becomes tender and sprouts leaves,
you know that summer is near.
In the same way, when you see these things happening,
know that he is near, at the gates.
Amen, I say to you,
this generation will not pass away
until all these things have taken place.
Heaven and earth will pass away,
but my words will not pass away.

“But of that day or hour, no one knows,
neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”

 

Reflection on the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
[November 18, 2018] Mark 13:24-32

…they will see ‘the Son of Man coming in the clouds’ with great power and glory… (Mk. 13:26)

The last book of the Bible is called the Book of Apocalypse. The Greek word “ apokalopsis ” means unveiling or revelation.  Thus, the 27th book of the New Testament is also known as the Book of Revelation. It is recognized as an “apocalypse” literature because the book unveils the future events, and usually, these are dramatic happenings at the end of the world. Our Gospel this Sunday is taken from Mark chapter 13, and this chapter is also known as the little “Apocalypse.”

Mark 13 speaks about the coming of the Son of Man. But, reading closely, we discover some distressing and even horrifying events that precede this glorious coming. The Temple of Jerusalem will be demolished, Jesus’ followers will endure severe persecution, and the sun, the moon, and other celestial bodies begin crumbling. This generation will be a terrible time to live.

For modern readers like us, our Gospel today does not sound optimistic at all. In fact, we may question whether it is a Good News of salvation or a nightmarish story that scares little children? For many of us who attend the Sunday mass faithfully, we listen to this little apocalypse at the end of every Church’s liturgical year. Thus, as we have heard it year after year, the story has lost its teeth, and we no longer pay attention to its details. After all, we are still alive and kicking.

However, the apocalypse literature has a different impact and meaning for the first Christians, the original readers of the Gospel of Mark. For the early Church, the apocalypse does not mean to be a horror story, but rather a message of hope.  The early Christians were a tiny minority in the vast Roman empire. Because they were firm in their conviction to worship one God, and refuse to worship Caesars and the Roman gods, they were continually subjects of harassment, persecution and even martyrdom. One of the most brutal persecutions of Christians was under the order of Emperor Nero. He blamed Christians for the fire that consumed parts of the City of Rome. He ordered Christians to be arrested and tortured. Some were fed to the wild beasts. Some were eaten by the hungry dogs. Others were burned at stick to light up the City at night.  In this time of desperation, Mark chapter 13 gave them the Gospel of hope. No matter what happened to Christians, whether it is discrimination, persecution, disaster, or even the end of the world, we are assured that it is God who is in control; He has the final word.

The mere fact we can read this reflection means that we are living in a much better time compared to the persecuted Christians. However, the message of the apocalyptic literature remains true to us and all Jesus’ followers through the ages. Facing daily challenges and toils, unexpected and unfortunate events, and various problems and complexities, we tend to shrink to ourselves, to be frustrated, and lose hope. More and more young people easily get depressed, and some, unfortunately, decide to end their lives. This happens, I believe, because we no longer know how to hope. In his book, Crossing the Threshold of Hope, St. John Paul II was asked whether the holy pope ever doubted his relationship with God, especially in these periods of trouble and difficulty. As a man of hope, his answer was simple yet powerful, “Be not afraid!” The Church should be the school that teaches her children to dare to hope, even hope against all hope, because in the end, God has the final word, and we should not be afraid.

Br. Valentinus Bayuhadi Ruseno, OP 

Photo by Harry SJ

To pray persistently like the widow in the parable, wanting swift justice to be served, demands a strong faith. Whatever it is u are asking from God, just dnt giv up praying. His timing is perfect. Just wait in faith.

Pipol are always running in pursuit of many things, even in matters of faith: in haste of finding God, His presence or His answer 2 their prayers. Believe & stay calm. Live & promote the gospel values of life & love. There God is found.

Gratitude is an attitude. It does not come frm one’s nationality, religion, profession or education. It is an expression of appreciation 4 a favor or blessing received or evn anticipated. Say thank you 2day. Evriday.

Jesus wants us to watch out & be careful. He knows that committing sin is inevitable. But to cause others to sin is 4 him more woeful & terrible. Bring others to God & not to the devil.

How many lost souls hav we found & brought back 2 God? Have we exerted efforts, like a shepherd, 2 lead them back 2 Him? Is someone in ur family or circle of friends in need of guidance & direction? Dnt be indifferent. Do something.

Fr. Ramon T. Salibay, O.P.

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