November 12th – Thirty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time
“He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead and his kingdom will have no end. “
“I believe in …the resurrection of the body and life everlasting. “
These two excerpts taken from the Nicene Creed and the Apostles Creed summarize the basic focus of today’s readings and liturgy. After last Sunday’s severe rebuke of the religious leaders of Israel and the early church, we now turn to prepare ourselves for the end of the world and the final judgment. The church affirms and believes that the Lord Jesus will come again. The world as we know it will pass away and all will be returned to the Father. Some will enter the Kingdom and some will not, depending on our readiness to welcome the Bridegroom with our lamps burning. We are called to be on ready alert.
The parable of the wise and foolish virgins awaiting the return of the bridegroom remind me of one wedding I had at Old St. Mary. As I entered the back of church, I saw the wedding dress on a hanger with the photographer taking pictures. I wondered where the bride was. I should have known we would start late. Then the matron of honor who was pregnant split her dress so a relative had to do some last minute alterations. We were at least twenty minutes late but it was only a wedding service. All turned out ok. I sometimes tell the engaged couple to have a seamstress on hand for the wedding.
While our focus in November is on death and final judgment, St. Paul offers us a message of consolation. At Christ’s final arrival, the dead will rise to eternal life, a message of comfort. “Thus we shall always be with the Lord.” (1 Thess 4:17)
We are called to be ready for the final coming but we are also called to be ready for the coming of Christ each day in our lives. At our baptism we received a candle and told to keep the flame of faith alive in our hearts. By our performance of the spiritual and corporal works of mercy, we open our hearts to see Jesus who comes to us each day.
I will be on retreat this week and will pray for all of your intentions. Please keep me and Fr. Tim in your prayers.
With a grateful heart,
Fr. Mike Michalski
November 5th – Thirty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time
“To live in the midst of the world without desiring its pleasures;
To be a member of each family, yet belonging to none;
To share all sufferings! To penetrate all secrets; to heal all wounds;
To go from people to God and offer him their prayers; to return from God
to people to bring pardon, peace, and hope;
To have a heart of fire for charity and a heart of bronze for chastity;
teach and to pardon, to console and to bless always,
My God, what a life!
And it is yours, O Priest of Jesus Christ!”
Our readings this Sunday are especially challenging for those in leadership in the Church, and I thought it would be a good time to ask you, our dear parishioners for prayers for Fr. Mike and me and all priests as we serve our parish communities.
You have our love and compassion as we serve you, and assure you that we see ourselves as servant leaders. A favorite title for pastors is “coordinators of charisms!” Please know that as we work to coordinate the wonderful gifts of our wonderful parishioners, we always hope to do so with true humility.
Please continue to pray for Fr. Mike and me and all priests!
Sincerely, with love,