ST CECILIA, V.M. (MEMORIAL) Red
Cecilia was a young patrician woman who vowed her virginity to God. However, her parents married her to Valerian of Trastevere. Through her prayers and persuasion, her husband was baptized. Valerian also wished that his own brother be baptised and asked this favour from an angel. The two brothers developed a ministry of giving proper burial to martyred Christians. They were arrested and martyred for their faith. Cecilia buried them at her villa on the Appian Way, and she was arrested for the action. She was ordered to sacrifice to false gods, and when she refused, she was martyred in turn.
First Reading: Rev 14:14-19; Psalm: 99. R. V. 13b; Gospel: Lk 21:5-11
THE SUDDENNESS OF THE END
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
We would all agree that in life, it takes a lot to build but very easy to destroy. It takes also a lot of time, energy and money to plan an event or occasion. But it takes just a matter of minutes for that event to come to an end. An occasion may take months or even a year to plan; takes only few hours to happen, and ends so suddenly in a matter of seconds. This is life. The end comes so quickly before we know it.
And when everything ends, things can become even clearer to us. We may discover there are things we didn’t plan and do well, the mistakes we made and some omission we should have considered. Reflecting on the past are often filled with regrettable mistakes. But the painful part of it all is that we cannot rewind and revisit the past to amend the errors therein.
Jesus today talks about the reality of the end so that we can better prepare ourselves and avoid regretting our past. It was hard for the Jews to accept that the temple which took them years to build will suddenly crumble down before their eyes. But Jesus wanted them to focus on themselves and not the temple. Likewise, let the events of life not preoccupy our minds but our souls. All events of life will end but our soul is eternal. And our soul can only be saved based on how well we live our lives. Though the end comes so quickly; but if we are vigilant, it will not take us unawares.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, we pray for the grace to always do your will. Amen.