Today’s readings take a fearless look at reality and reach a conclusion that we all know: life is hard. The prophet Malachi preaches fire and brimstone, warning us that evildoers will perish in flames. Saint Paul offers his own warning to the Thessalonians: keep busy, but never become a busybody. He reminds Christians that the apostles themselves worked in “toil and drudgery” as a model for how we ought to contribute to our community. The Gospel returns to the apocalyptic tone of Malachi, describing the utter chaos of the end-times. We will know the end is near when violence, catastrophe, and hatred dominate the earth. But we must not fear! God’s saving plan brings peace to our hearts. Malachi speaks of the sun’s “healing rays,” and Jesus himself promises to protect every hair on our heads.
THE GOSPEL TRUTH
Even our love of life could harm us or help us, depending on what we’re living for. Luke’s Gospel today describes wars, disasters, and persecution. In desperate times like those that Jesus identifies, our instinct is to save ourselves. If we cling to this life too frantically, we might lie or offer false testimony to avoid religious persecution. Jesus calls us to a different way: tell the truth. Proclaim faith in Jesus, even in terrible times or awkward situations. At work, among friends, at the ballot box, on weekends, and yes, even in the face of death, we are asked to show clearly that we believe in the saving power of Jesus Christ. Jesus knows the risk involved in our witness: we will be hated. Even so, we cling to Christ. “By your perseverance,” Jesus promises, “you will secure your lives.” Our souls are more precious than a comfortable life or extravagant wealth. Jesus died to save our souls. He will never abandon us. He always provides exactly what we need.
Today’s Readings: Mal 3:19–20a; Ps 98:5–9; 2 Thes 3:7–12; Lk 21:5–19
Also in this bulletin:
- Hear Deacon Rick’s story of traveling by foot from southern France to the pyranese mountains into Spain.
- Local Holy Doors Close Nov. 19
- Additional Confession Times
- Sponsor a Family For Thanksgiving
- “Safe Environment Classes”
- Attn. Inactive Christophers
- 2ND Collection for domestic needs next weekend
- Pro-Life Ministry helps at Delta Nursing Facility
- The Catholic School of Visalia George McCann shares photos of their Halloween Carnival
- You’re invited to share your family milestones in new Parish Pride section of bulletin