THEME: PREPARE FOR THE OPENING CEREMONY
READINGS: Daniel 12: 1-3/ Hebrews 10: 11-14, 18/ Mark 13:24-32
33rd Sunday in Ordinary time
Grand events are normally preceded by spectacular opening ceremonies. Just recall the spectacular opening ceremonies of Olympic Games. The second coming of Jesus, unlike his first humble coming, will be the most grandeur event ever to be witnessed by mankind. And we will not need TV networks to transmit that greatest event to our view, for, according to Scriptures, all alive will see it happening LIVE across the globe (at the same time)! To usher this greatest event, then, we should expect the greatest spectacular opening ceremony! It will be breath-taking for many and even frightening for others, for as the gospel reading informs us: ‘the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken’ (Mark 13:24-25)!
But beloved, let us not be frightened, rather like many who joyfully anticipated the spectacular opening ceremony of the Olympics and prepared well for it (e.g. buying tickets, T-shirts, caps, etc. ahead of time), let us prepare well (by a faithful and faith-filled life]) in joyful anticipation of the most spectacular opening ceremony! It will usher us into the games not in an earthly location but in the heavenly stadium to witness the Angelic Olympics!
Whereas there is count-down of days towards Olympic games, there can be no count-down for the heavenly games, because, according to Jesus, ‘of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father’ (Mark 13:32). Beloved, this calls for a daily preparation and anticipation. The heavenly games are being organized, not by humans, but by angels with the mandate of the Lord. Thus, only angels have been mandated to sell the genuine tickets: then the Son of Man ‘will send out the angels, and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven’ (Mark 13:27). Let us buy our tickets now online, not via the internet, but by faith, and let us keep them well by faith-filled lifestyles. Finally: meet you there at the heavenly games! May God bless us all, amen!
By Very Rev. Fr. John K. Louis