Through the year the Church, in her Liturgy, unfolds the fullness of the mysteries of the Faith for us. Frequently the Liturgy is reflected even in the rhythm of nature. This is certainly true in this last month of the Liturgical year (a new Liturgical year begins with the First Sunday of Advent on November 29). The arrival of Fall - and hints of Winter - brings with it the death of all vegetation. Along with nature, the Liturgy also draws our attention to our own mortality, and our inevitable death. This Sunday’s readings - and the readings for the two remaining Sundays of the Liturgical year - remind us of the need to contemplate our eventual death, and the necessary preparation for that event. This is not a morbid exercise, but rather a sign of true wisdom. All human activity is directed towards some end or purpose. And the whole of our life should be directed towards eternal life with God. Remembering our true “End” is essential for seeking the proper means to get there.
As I write this Americans across our country are casting their ballots (and many, like I, voted early.) And by the time you read this it very well may be that the results of the presidential election are still inconclusive. Even if one candidate clearly has won, I expect that there will continue to be civil unrest. Our Lord reminded us that in this world we will have trouble. That is why we Christians always affirm that, though we live IN the world, we are not OF the world. As always, we will need to exercise prudence and courage: prudence that we might always choose the best and moral actions for our own and the common good; and courage that we have the strength to carry out those actions. Continue to pray for our country, the United States of America, which Abraham Lincoln described as “the last best hope of earth.”
May God bless you!