"Know That He is Near"

11-14-2021Weekly ReflectionFr. Manasseh Iorchir, VC

The calendar year is coming to an end as we are in November, its penultimate month. The current liturgical year is also about to be completed. Next weekend, we shall celebrate the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ King of the Universe, the Solemnity that marks the end of a liturgical year giving way to a new one. The readings of today reflect the mood of the liturgical “subseason”, they speak of the anticipated end of time and the judgement of humanity that would follow.

In the first reading, the prophet Daniel prophesied about a period of unsurpassed distress that would be ushered in by the sudden appearance of Angel Michael, Prince of Heaven. The righteous who are asleep in their graves shall awake to a reward of eternal life while “others” shall rise to perpetual horror and disgrace. This apocalyptic narrative is echoed by the Gospel where Jesus encouraged His disciples to learn to read the signs of the time so they would be able to discern when the end was near. One thing that is distinctly clear is that Jesus, Himself, would be the endtime Judge who would gather His elect from all corners of the earth and effect judgement on all. When this will happen, Jesus insists, neither the Angels nor the Son knows; it is known only to the Father.

As both the calendar and liturgical year approach their eclipse, we need to reflect on the imminent end of time and the judgement of all souls. This will enable us to set our priorities right so that we don’t end up treasuring material things and transient pleasures thus risking our eternity which can not be limited by even the reality of the apocalypse. Jesus forewarned us so that we may remain spiritually awake and alert to our obligations as Christians and stand ready when He comes.

May the vicissitudes of life only serve to help us understand the passing nature of our corporeal reality. May we be aided with abundant Grace that will keep us alive in Faith, Hope and Charity, and may Jesus, the merciful Judge, find you and I ready when He comes again.