Father Edward McIlmail, LC
people were speaking about how the Temple was adorned
with costly stones and votive offerings, Jesus said, "All
that you see here -- the days will come when
there will not be left a stone upon another
stone that will not be thrown down." Then they
asked him, "Teacher, when will this happen? And what
sign will there be when all these things are about
to happen?" He answered, "See that you not be
deceived, for many will come in my name, saying,
´I am he,´ and ´The time has come.´ Do not
follow them! When you hear of wars and insurrections,
do not be terrified; for such things must happen
first, but it will not immediately be the end." Then
he said to them, "Nation will rise against nation,
and kingdom against kingdom. There will be powerful earthquakes,
famines and plagues from place to place; and awesome
sights and mighty signs will come from the sky.”
Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank you for this special time
I have with you. It´s one of the few calm
moments of the day. Your presence reassures me that
I don´t have to endure the trials of the
day alone. You are my strength and my peace. I
wish to abide in your love.
Petition: Jesus, help me
to keep hoping despite the crises in my life.
Temple of Doom: For the Jews, the Temple in Jerusalem
was the center of religious and cultural life. It
contained the Holy of Holies, the sanctuary that once
housed the Ark of the Covenant. The people were proud
of the Temple, but Jesus warns them that the
day will arrive when it will be destroyed (as indeed
it was, in A.D. 70). Yet the end of
the Temple will not be the end of religion.
Jesus himself will remain with us, as he does to
this day, in the Eucharist. Likewise, no matter what
else passes away — our house, our office, our school
— Christ remains. Does that belief fill me with
2. Be Not Deceived: Jesus doesn´t directly answer the
question about when the Temple will be destroyed. Rather,
he tries to get his listeners to focus on what
is really important: their faith. Our Lord warns them
not to listen to the wrong people. Throughout the
course of a normal day, to whom do we listen?
Whose voices are on our radios, our TV sets?
Who really has our ear day–by-day? Worldly talk-show hosts?
The news media´s "instant experts"? MTV gurus? Jesus cautions
us that the people we listen to might affect the
quality of our lives — and the quality of
our eternity. Do I judge carefully, then, the voices I
3. Do Not Be Terrified: Tsunamis, floods, terrorist
attacks, wars, abortion, euthanasia -- is the world a nicer
place today than in Jesus´ time? Our Lord was
no stranger to bad news. He knew about the
tower in Siloam that killed 18 people (see Luke 13:4)
-- and he knew what awaited him on Good
Friday. Yet he always remained hopeful and encouraged the
best in people. As his followers, we too must be
witnesses to hope. We need to brighten the lives
of those around us. More importantly we need to remind
others that God will win in the end. "Good,
not evil, has the last word," Pope John Paul
II told the general audience of Oct. 17, 2001,
"God triumphs over the hostile powers, even when they seem
great and invincible."
Conversation with Christ: Lord,
I know in my mind that you will win in
the end. If only my heart would believe that,
too! Grant me this grace. Grant that my life will
show that kind of optimism at every moment.
Resolution:I will make a small sacrifice or offer up
a special prayer for someone suffering today.