Pope's Morning Homily: Be Prepared If Lord Comes Like a 'Thief in the Night'

During Mass at Santa Marta, Says Stop Chattering, Start Comforting

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Christians are to comfort each other through good works and kind words and not with useless chatter.

In his first public daily Mass at his residence since his summer break, Francis called on Catholics to realize our God lives and will come to find us, and therefore, to live accordingly, reported Vatican Radio.

In the responsorial psalm, the Pope noted how we repeat the words, ‘I am sure I will see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living,’ and then posed a question to those present.

“Are you certain you will see the Lord?” he asked.

Like Job, Francis said, despite many misadventures, we are to firmly believe we’ll see Christ with our own eyes and let this give us hope.

“It’s true, He will come to judge and when we go to the Sistine (Chapel) we see that beautiful scene of the Last Judgement,” the Pope said. “But we must also believe that He will come to find me because I see Him with my eyes, I embrace Him and am always with Him.  This is the hope that the Apostle Paul tells us to explain to others through our life, to give witness to hope.  This is the true comfort, this is the true certainty: ‘I am sure I will see the Lord’s kindness.'”

In today’s letter to the Thessalonians, St. Paul encourages early Christians to let hope grow in their hearts until the final day in which they meet him, the Pope recalled. Francis stressed how the Apostle also warned that this day could arrive without warning, like a “thief in the night.”

Though the thought of lack of notice could be frightening, Francis reminded those gathered that Jesus is coming to bring salvation to those who believe in Him and to have hope, comfort and help each other.

“Let us ask the Lord for this grace: that seed of hope that he has planted in our hearts so it germinates and grows until our final meeting with Him.”

“‘I am certain that I will see the Lord.’ ‘I am certain that our Lord lives.’ ‘I am certain that our Lord will come to find me’: This should be the horizon of our life.  Let us ask the Lord for this grace and let us comfort each other with good works and kind words, (let’s go) along this road.”

“This is my advice, ‘comfort each other.’ Speak about this: but I’m asking you: do we speak about this, that the Lord will come and will we meet Him? Or do we speak about so many things, including theology, things about the Church, priests, religious sisters, monsignors, all this?  And is this hope our comfort? ‘Comfort each other,’ comfort those in the community. In our community, in our parishes, are we speaking about this that we’re waiting for the Lord who comes?  Or are we instead chattering about this and that to help pass the time and not get too bored?”

The Pope concluded by exhorting the faithful to live lives they would be at peace with the day the Lord gives a surprise visit. 

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Deborah Castellano Lubov

Deborah Castellano Lubov is Senior Vatican & Rome Correspondent for ZENIT; author of 'The Other Francis' ('L'Altro Francesco') featuring interviews with those closest to the Pope and preface by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin (currently published in 5 languages); Deborah is also NBC & MSNBC Vatican Analyst. She often covers the Pope's travels abroad, often from the Papal Flight (including for historic trips such as to Abu Dhabi and Japan & Thailand), and has also asked him questions on the return-flight press conference on behalf of the English-speaking press present. Lubov has done much TV & radio commentary, including for NBC, Sky, EWTN, BBC, Vatican Radio, AP, Reuters and more. She also has contributed to various books on the Pope and has written for various Catholic publications. For 'The Other Francis': http://www.gracewing.co.uk/page219.html or https://www.amazon.com/Other-Francis-Everything-They-about/dp/0852449348/

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