Reflection 11-14-21

First Reading: Daniel 12:1-3
Second Reading: Hebrews 10:11-14, 18
Gospel: Mark 13:24-32

St. John the Apostle celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation for the second half of our 9th graders at the 7 PM Mass on Friday, October 29, 2021. Bishop Elias Lorenzo, OSB celebrated the Confirmation Mass (pictured center). Congratulations to all the young men and women receiving Confirmation! Come O Holy Spirit!

Through research on the human brain, Dr. Wilder Penfield has demonstrated that there’s a permanent stored record of all the experiences and events of our life, including the emotions experienced. When the temporal cortex of the human brain is touched, a patient under local anesthesia could describe the events of his/her life.

“For all of us must appear before Christ to be judged and receive what we deserve, according to everything we have done, good or bad in bodily life.” (2Cor5:10) This is called the particular judgment, which takes place immediately after our death. We determine by our thoughts, words and deeds the outcome of this particular judgment. As we can see, they are all stored in our brain. At the moment of our death, the only thing that will matter is love – not money, power, prestige, possessions, status or anything else, but did we share the love of Jesus Christ in our hearts to help other people? At the grand finale of humanity, which we call the final judgment (that Jesus speaks about in today’s gospel), the entire world will know what each of us have done to love. Did we cooperate with God’s grace? We will then know how our lives fit into God’s story of salvation. “We shall know the ultimate meaning of the whole work of creation and of the entire economy of salvation and understand the marvelous ways by which his Providence led everything towards the final end.” (CC1040)

The message is clear. Now is the time for change! The moment of our death may come suddenly – are we prepared? We may not be able to change others – how often do we spend time trying to get someone else to change their ways?… but we have the power to change ourselves.

The Sacrament of Reconciliation is the “change” sacrament. God, in his infinite wisdom and goodness gives us this sacrament, so he may share his divine life with us – we experience his divine mercy and receive his grace to enable us to change. On our own, it may be very difficult or even not possible to change our unloving ways. The best way to conquer those sinful habits form over the years of our life is through frequent Confession. The grace received in this sacrament weakens the hold that those habits have on us, strengthens us to resist sliding down the same slippery slope and helps us to be the person Jesus Christ wants us to be!

May God bless us all always!
Deacon Mike