One Minute Reflection – 21 October – Wednesday of the Twenty Ninth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Ephesians 3:2-12, Responsorial Psalm: Isaiah 12:2-3, 4,5-6, Luke 12:39-48 and the Memorial of Blessed Karl of Austria (1887 – 1922)
“You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” – Luke 12:40
REFLECTION – “Watch!”
Our Saviour gave this warning when He was leaving this world—leaving it, that is, as far as His visible presence is concerned. He looked forward to the many hundred years which were to pass before He came again. He knew His own purpose and His Father’s purpose gradually to leave the world to itself, gradually to withdraw from it the tokens of His gracious presence. He contemplated, as contemplating all things, the neglect of Him, which would spread, even among his professed followers … He foresaw the state of the world and the Church, as we see it this day, when His prolonged absence has made it practically thought, that He never will come back in visible presence.
Today, He mercifully whispers into our ears, not to trust in what we see, not to share in that general unbelief, not to be carried away by the world but to “take heed, watch and pray,” (Lk 21:34.36) and look out for His coming. Surely this gracious warning should be ever in our thoughts, being so precise, so solemn, so earnest.
Our Saviour foretold His first coming, yet He took His Church by surprise when He came; much more will He come suddenly the second time and overtake men, now that He has not measured out the interval before it, as then He did but left our watchfulness to the keeping of faith and love … We are not simply to believe but to watch; not simply to love but to watch; not simply to obey but to watch; to watch for what? for that great event, Christ’s coming … we seem to see a special duty enjoined on us … – most of us have a general idea what is meant by believing, fearing, loving and obeying but, perhaps we do not contemplate or apprehend what is meant by “watching.” – St John Henry Newman (1801-1890) Cardinal, Founder of the Oratory in England, Theologian – Sermon “ Watching ” PPS, t. 4, n° 22
PRAYER – Holy Father, grant me an operative faith, a faith that will move mountains. Enlighten my soul with Your Light, Goodness, Power and Wisdom. Let my faith be an image of You by lively deeds and love and by conforming myself to Your Will in all things. Blessed Karl of Austria, amidst the fineries of your earthly kingship, you longed only to serve the God of all and searched for complete closeness and abandonment to Him, teach us by your prayer, to serve God alone with upright hearts and thus manifest a true faith, through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.