Celebrate Sunday Mass - 11.14.21

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11/14/2021 (10 months ago)

By Deacon Keith Fournier

33rd Sunday of the Year -- November 14, 2021

Dear Catholic Online Community and Catholic Online School students...


We are coming to the end of the Liturgical Year in the Catholic Church. Next Sunday we will celebrate the Feast of the Solemnity of the Lord Jesus Christ the King of the Universe. Our readings over these last days of the Church year point us toward the final judgement and the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. He will come again to Judge the living and the dead. 

Our readings for this 33d Sunday speak of this profoundly important truth of the Catholic Faith. In our Creeds we are reminded that Jesus will return to judge the living and the dead. Yet, how often do we reflect on this? Does it affect the way we live our lives now?

In the first reading of today's Holy Mass the Lord speaks through the Prophet Daniel of that great day. Michael the Archangel is spoken of and the resurrection of the dead and the separation of the just and the unjust are set forth in this prophetic utterance. This is a Book from the Hebrew Scriptures, the Old Testament. It confirms that the belief in the last judgement is ancient. 

The Catholic Catechism teaches:

"The Last Judgment will come when Christ returns in glory. Only the Father knows the day and the hour; only he determines the moment of its coming. Then through his Son Jesus Christ he will pronounce the final word on all history. 

"We shall know the ultimate meaning of the whole work of creation and of the entire economy of salvation and understand the marvelous ways by which his Providence led everything towards its final end. The Last Judgment will reveal that God's justice triumphs over all the injustices committed by his creatures and that God's love is stronger than death."

"The message of the Last Judgment calls men to conversion while God is still giving them "the acceptable time, . . . the day of salvation." It inspires a holy fear of God and commits them to the justice of the Kingdom of God. It proclaims the "blessed hope" of the Lord's return, when he will come "to be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at in all who have believed." (CCC #1040, 1041)

The Gospel we heard today is taken from the 13th chapter of St Mark.  Jesus teaches His Disciples - and that includes us - what will happen on His Return. These last days of the Church year present us with an invitation to examine our own lives in light of these teachings and consider how we are living them. 

The Lord is coming for us. Whether it is at the time of our death, or, if we live during the time of His Second Coming. At either time, we will be judged. The Catholic Catechism speaks of a "particular judgement" which will occur at our death: 

"Each man receives his eternal retribution in his immortal soul at the very moment of his death, in a particular judgment that refers his life to Christ: either entrance into the blessedness of heaven-through a purification or immediately, -- or immediate and everlasting damnation." (CCC # 1022).

The Catechism also speaks of the final judgment in these words: 

"The resurrection of all the dead, "of both the just and the unjust," will precede the Last Judgment. This will be "the hour when all who are in the tombs will hear [the Son of man's] voice and come forth, those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of judgment." 

"Then Christ will come "in his glory, and all the angels with him. . . . Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate them one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will place the sheep at his right hand, but the goats at the left. . . . And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."625

"In the presence of Christ, who is Truth itself, the truth of each man's relationship with God will be laid bare.626 The Last Judgment will reveal even to its furthest consequences the good each person has done or failed to do during his earthly life." (CCC #1038, 1039).

I know these are sobering words. But they are words we should reflect on today and in these final weeks of the Church year. "The message of the Last Judgment calls men to conversion while God is still giving them "the acceptable time, . . . the day of salvation."

God Bless you and yours on this Lords Day

Deacon Keith Fournier
Dean of Catholic Online School
Chaplain of Your Catholic Voice Foundation

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