for Sunday, November 28, 2021
We begin Advent focusing on the two comings of the Lord. We are
looking forward to the celebration of the first coming in Bethlehem. There
were many prophesies of this coming in the Bible. Today's first reading
quotes just one of these prophecies, from the Prophet Jeremiah. The
days are coming when the promise to Israel will be fulfilled and a just
shoot shall rise from the line of David. He will do all that is right and just.
It was in the City of David, Bethlehem, that this prophecy would be fulfilled.
The second coming of the Lord is that which takes place at the end
of time. Jesus speaks about this in apocalyptical terms in today's Gospel.
His language is meant to engage us, involve us. We can't just be passive
bystanders to the words, "People will die in fright in anticipation of what is
coming." The Lord's words cause us to react with the question: "What can
we do to be ready for the end time?"
St. Paul answers this question in the First Letter to the
Thessalonians, today's second reading. He tells us what to do as we wait
for the Coming of the Lord. May the Lord make you increase and abound
in love for one another and for all, just as we have for you, so as to
strengthen your hearts, to be blameless in holiness before our God and
Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his holy ones. Amen.
To prepare for the Lord we have to increase our love for each other
and for all. Those who follow the way of the love will be saved. Our
salvation hinges on our fighting against hate in our world and in our own
lives. This is not easy. There are forces all around us encouraging us to
hate. Both political parties claim to be fair and just, but their leaders often
employ hate tactics. Character assassination is their standard mode of
operation. Ad hominem arguments, attacks on the person and not on the
position, have become so frequent that they are treated as valid points of
And so we pray, Lead us not into temptation. Give us the grace,
Lord, to be aware of the hatred around us, and don't let us join in with the
We pray Lead us not into temptation, don't let us fall into temptation
because our salvation depends on our fighting hatred. Then when the
Son of Man returns with his Holy Ones we won't have to slump over
hoping that we will not be noticed. No, if we are the people of Jesus
Christ, lovers not haters, we can stand tall at the coming of our Lord, be
this at the end of time or at the end of our own personal time.
May we be people of kindness, of charity, of peace. May we be
people who live in the joyful expectation of the Coming of Our Lord.
Readings of the day:
First Reading: Jeremiah 33.14-16
Second Reading: 1 Thessalonians 3.12 – 4.2
Gospel: Luke 21.25-28, 34-36
This material is used with permission of its author, Rev. Msgr. Joseph A. Pellegrino, Diocese of St. Petersburg, FL. Visit his
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