Written by Sunnie Lain, Director of Conferences and Community Outreach.
THIRTY-SECOND WEEK OF ORDINARY TIME
November 12, 2017
Gospel: (Matthew 25: 1-13)
Jesus told his disciples this parable: “The kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five of them were wise. The foolish ones, when taking their lamps, brought no oil with them, but the wise brought flasks of oil with their lamps…. At midnight, there was a cry, ‘Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!”… The foolish ones said to the wise,’Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’But the wise ones replied, ‘No, for there may not be enough for us and you. Go instead to the merchants and buy some for yourselves.’ While they went off to buy it, the bridegroom came and those who were ready went into the wedding feast with him…Afterwards the other virgins came and said, ‘Lord, Lord, open the door for us!’ But he said, ‘Amen, I say to you, I do not know you.’ Therefore, stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour.”
Our readiness for the Bridegroom is something for which we prepare during our entire lives. The gospel suggests that our waiting and watching must also include seeking. We must go out to meet Christ. Waiting and keeping vigil without seeking for the Bridegroom might be metaphors for living our daily lives without paying attention to the times when God breaks in upon us. It might be closing our eyes to the need of another. It might be keeping ourselves so frenetic with activity that we never take time to look seriously at ourselves, the priorities of our lives, and how we are (or are not) growing spiritually. Seeking while waiting for the Bridegroom prepares us for his coming by helping us to see all the little decisions in our everyday lives as directly related to our being ready, the door being open, and our going into the feast. (Living Liturgy, p.272)
For Vincent, true holiness meant that all of his decisions, plans, struggles, and actions had to revolve around the person of Jesus Christ. His own relationship with Jesus Christ developed in three stages. During his boyhood, his parents passed on their convictions about Jesus. Vincent believed, but not enough to move mountains. The second stage occurred in his twenties. A string of personal defeats and some sound spiritual direction caused Vincent to look deeply into himself. In was known only to Vincent and God, Vincent’s encounter with Jesus moved him to rearrange the map of his life. Finally, as he became more involved in ministering to the poor, Vincent discovered Jesus Christ in the faces of these humble souls. Vincent’s live then revolved around the person of Jesus, whom he encountered in the poor, sick and homeless people. (McKenna, Praying with Vincent, p.41-42)
Discussion: (Share thoughts on the readings after a moment of silence)
How have you been seeking Jesus in your life’s journey?
Jesus, give us the grace to seek you in our lives,
-so that all of our decisions, plans, struggles and actions
revolve around you. Amen