Liturgical Colour : Green or White (Saturday Mass of our Lady)
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today is the last day of our current liturgical year, which is liturgical year A, and from tomorrow onwards, we will begin a new liturgical year cycle, beginning with the season of Advent, a season of preparation for all of us to be ready to celebrate the great solemnity of our Lord’s birth and nativity in Christmas. Therefore, the readings today from the Scriptures were very appropriate in that they all proclaim of what we all should do to prepare ourselves, and what does the coming of our Lord mean to all of us.
The Gospel today speaks of our Lord Jesus who again constantly reminded the people to always be prepared and to stay vigilant, that is to be ready for the coming of our Lord as He had promised, lest they be caught unaware and unprepared. Thus, while we prepare for the joyful celebrations of Christmas, and as we embark on the Advent journey tomorrow, let us all also prepare ourselves body, heart, mind, soul and indeed our entire being to welcome the Lord and be ready for when He comes again in glory.
For we believe that while Christmas celebrates our Lord’s coming into the world as a Man in Jesus Christ, the Son of God and Son of Man, but that was His first coming into the world, when He revealed the fullness of God’s truth and the plan of God’s salvation for us all. That was the time when He walked among us as one of us, and lived as humans like us do, and He suffered and died for us, carrying the burdens of our sins even though He is without sin.
But we also expect His future coming into the world, this time not as a humble Man but as a victorious, triumphant and conquering King, who will be the Judge of all, and who will gather all the righteous ones to Himself. All those whom He judged to be worthy, He will bring to His everlasting glory, as we read today in the first reading taken from the last part of the Book of the revelations of St. John the Evangelist.
In that reading, after the tribulations of the faithful, the final plagues and the final victory against the devil and all of his followers, and after the final and last judgment of all the living and the dead, the Lord will welcome all those He had deemed to be righteous, good and just to come into His holy city, the place of abundance and everlasting grace, as well as perfect bliss, harmony and happiness.
There will be no more death, no more tears or sadness, and there will be no more sorrow, pain or suffering. There will be no more need for fear or hesitation, doubt or uncertainty, for our Lord will be there for us at all times, and He will rule over us forever and ever. We will be His beloved people, and we will enjoy forever the fullness of His love, His grace, blessing and inheritance He had promised us all.
But, all these does not come free and easy, brothers and sisters in Christ. For in order for us to achieve all these, we must be faithful, and that is not easy either. For being faithful to the Lord often means that we walk in the opposite way as the world, and for us to disregard the common ways of the world. We will often face difficulties, challenges, divisions and even opposition from those closest and dearest to us.
However, if we are able to persevere and move on, and remain true to our mission in this life, then our reward is great. Being faithful to the Lord entails being truly devoted and to be a practicing and proactive member of His faithful. Yes, it requires a faith that is based and founded upon a strong foundation of love and love in action. For example, if we are faithful, then surely we will see and notice the plight of those around us who lacked love and who have difficulties themselves.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, we are the children of God and therefore we are the children of the Light. And the way of the Light is to bring love and compassion to all peoples, and to bring harmony and peace to all societies. And ultimately the way of Light is to preach truly and courageously the truth of our Lord, Jesus Christ, He who had given it all to save us from the powers of darkness, and deliver us into the new life in Him.
Hence, brothers and sisters, let us not wait any longer or be idle any longer. Let us begin to take action from now on. Remember, that the Lord also mentioned in the first reading we heard today, “I am coming soon!” and this is very real. Yes, He will come again and He will come again soon, at a time that we cannot predict and a time which we do not expect.
Do not wait until it is too late. Profess our love for Him now, so that when He comes again, we will be ready, and He will find us righteous and just, and He will then bring us to enjoy forever the fruits of eternal life, the fruits of our faithfulness, obedience, righteousness and love for Him. If we have done what is good and what He has asked us to do, as I have said earlier on, then we have nothing to worry. If we have not, then let us begin from now on and never wait. God be with us all. Amen.
First Reading :
Gospel Reading :