Posted by: fvbcdm | September 13, 2016

Feast of Saint John Chrysostom (13 Sept 2016) 

Every time we say the “Hail, Mary,” we ask Our Lady to pray for us “now and at the hour of our death.” And in the gospel we hear Our Lord telling us how we should live like servants awaiting their master’s return after being away. If he finds them doing what they should, fine. But if not, he will be displeased and they will be punished.

“The master’s return” is Our Lord’s way of talking about the moment of our death. It is an extremely important moment, for upon it hinges our eternal future. That’s why we ask Our Lady to pray for us in the ever-present NOW and then at the hour of our death. We do NOT want to die in a situation that will displease God and bring punishment upon ourselves.

I remember laughing one time in Germany when, at the end of a meal in a restaurant, I asked the waiter how to ask for the check in German. He told me that the word they use is “Rechnung,” which is cousin to our English word “reckoning.” It sounds so ominous! You have a good meal without paying much attention to the prices given on the menu, and then comes the reckoning! Back to the moral order, I once visited a young man in a Houston hospital who was dying of AIDS. He was being very philosophical about it: he had lived an actively homosexual life style, and now he was dying. He said to me with resignation, “First you play, and then you pay.”

Let us listen to the words of Jesus in the gospel for this Sunday, and then be careful to live every moment of our lives like responsible servants, always ready to receive the master upon his return. Thank you for seeking God’s truth, God bless you. Father Victor Brown, O.P.

Note:  This message was composed some years ago.

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