✝️ REFLECTION CAPSULE FOR THE DAY – November 28, 2021: Sunday
“Remaining ever focused and concentrated on God’s Ways and on His Kingdom, and always ‘atch the Road!’”
(Based on Jer 33:14-16, 1 Thess 3:12-4:2 and Lk 21:25-28, 34-36 – 1st Sunday of Advent, Year C)
In a particular place, a bus driver had reached a unique record: In the 23 years of his service, he had driven a bus for over 1, 00,000 kilometres, without a single accident.
>> When asked how he had done it, he had just one simple piece of advice: “Watch the road!”
Watching the road had made him always be focused and concentrated, and to have a flawless record.
“Watching the Road” is an important refrain that we all can follow in our Christian life…
… and thus be focused and concentrated always God’s Ways and on His Kingdom.
The Gospel of the Day is a strong warning and a call to be on the guard and “always watch the road!”
Today is the starting of the Season of Advent – a time offered to all of us, to prepare meaningfully for the coming of Christ. Christ comes to us in…
(1) History – His Life, Death and Resurrection
(2) Mystery – The Sacraments that are offered to us
(3) Glory – His Final Coming
>> The Season of Advent is a time…
…. to grow in our understanding of Salvation History
… to experience, greater, His Love and Mercy in the Mystery of the Sacraments
… and to prepare ourselves meaningfully for the Glory of His Second Coming!
Today we also begin the new Liturgical Year.
The Liturgical Year beautifully unfolds the Mystery of Christ, the cycle of the year…
… and the Church invites and calls all of us to live His mystery in our own lives!
The Gospel of the Day speaks of the various signs that would signal the coming of the Son of Man (Lk 21: 25-28)
It also gives a strict warning and a hard reminder to be always on the alert and be on the watch.
>> “… and that day come upon you suddenly like a snare” (Lk 21:34)
The Greek word used for “snare” is “pagis”.
> ‘Pagis’ comes from the word ‘pegnumi’ which means “a setup or a fix”.
It is a trap (fixed or fastened by a noose or notch) that can fall suddenly so that wild animals and birds are caught by surprise.
>> And when it is set off there is no time to withdraw and avoid getting caught.
As soon as the prey takes the first bite or the first step, the snare is set off and before the prey knows what happened, they are caught.
The Lord describes His Second Coming to the world as this ‘snare,’ giving no time or chance for escape.
>> Everyone who is caught up with the cares of this life – the day will come on them like a snare!
This, therefore, calls for alertness and watchfulness at all times.
>> Our whole life, ought to be drenched in preparation and vigilance.
But often, we tend to allow negligence to creep into our lives – we fail to ‘watch the road’
>> We fail to give heed to the many barriers and blockages that come on our way…
… sins and sinful tendencies that, over time, become actions to which we get addicted
… Indifferences and lethargy that drains away enthusiasm and vitality in our works
The call of the Lord, in this Season of Advent, is clear: “Watch the Road”
… Have your focus back on Jesus, and allow His Light to guide you
… Have your attention back on the Kingdom, and allow concerns of eternity to be prioritised
The Season of Advent is a time of spiritual preparation for the Great Feast of Christmas.
It is probably, many of our felt experience that Christmas, slowly seems to be losing its spiritual sheen…
… and getting reduced to merely a cosmetic occasion, a commercial event, a business-filled period and a money-oriented affair.
>> Advent therefore, is a reminder and a call, to “get back to the basics” – to get back Jesus and His love and message back in our festivities and celebration of His Nativity.
Let us not to get lost in the glamour and glitz of this Sacred Season that the Church offers and instead, help us to grow deeper in the Love of the Lord…
… and be able to truly make December 25, not merely a calendar event – rather an experience of the Lord being born in our hearts!
Let us remain ever focused and concentrated always on God’s Ways and on His Kingdom…
… and always “Watch the Road!”
God Bless! Live Jesus!
– Fr Jijo Jose Manjackal MSFS
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📖 Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism
MISSION – A REQUIREMENT OF THE CHURCH’S CATHOLICITY
>> The missionary mandate. “Having been divinely sent to the nations that she might be ‘the universal sacrament of salvation,’ the Church, in obedience to the command of Her Founder and because it is demanded by her own essential universality, strives to preach the Gospel to all men”
>> “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and Lo, I am with you always, until the close of the age.”
>> The origin and purpose of mission: The Lord’s missionary mandate is ultimately grounded in the eternal love of the Most Holy Trinity: “The Church on earth is by her nature missionary since, according to the plan of the Father, she has as her origin the mission of the Son and the Holy Spirit.”
>> The ultimate purpose of mission is none other than to make men share in the communion between the Father and the Son in their Spirit of Love (CCC # 842-845)