FIRST READING
“If they could investigate the world, how did they fail to find the Lord of these things?”
A reading from the Book of Wisdom (Wisdom 13:1-9)

All men who were ignorant of God were foolish by nature; and they were unable from the good things that are seen to know him who exists, nor did they recognise the craftsman while paying heed to his works; but they supposed that either fire or wind or swift air, or the circle of the stars, or turbulent water, or the luminaries of heaven were the gods that rule the world. If through delight in the beauty of these things men assumed them to be gods, let them know how much better than these is their Lord, for the author of beauty created them. And if men were amazed at their power and working, let them perceive from them how much more powerful is he who formed them. For from the greatness and beauty of created things comes a corresponding perception of their Creator. Yet these men are little to be blamed, for perhaps they go astray while seeking God and desiring to find him. For as they live among his works they keep searching, and they trust in what they see, because the things that are seen are beautiful. Yet again, not even they are to be excused; for if they had the power to know so much that they could investigate the world, how did they fail to find sooner the Lord of these things?

The word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm 19:2-3.4-5ab (R. 2a)
R/. The heavens declare the glory of God.

The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the firmament proclaims the work of his hands.
Day unto day conveys the message,
and night unto night imparts the knowledge. R/.

R/. The heavens declare the glory of God.

No speech, no word, whose voice goes unheeded;
their sound goes forth through all the earth,
their message to the utmost bounds of the world. R/.

ALLELUIA Luke 21:28
Alleluia. Look up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near. Alleluia.

GOSPEL
“So it will be on the day when the Son of man is revealed.”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (Luke 17:26-37)

At that time: Jesus said to his disciples, “As it was in the days of Noah, so will it be in the days of the Son of man. They ate, they drank, they married, they were given in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. Likewise as it was in the days of Lot— they ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built, but on the day when Lot went out from Sodom, fire and brimstone rained from heaven and destroyed them all— so will it be on the day when the Son of man is revealed. On that day, let him who is on the housetop, with his goods in the house, not come down to take them away; and likewise let him who is in the field not turn back. Remember Lot’s wife. Whoever seeks to gain his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life will preserve it. I tell you, in that night there will be two men in one bed; one will be taken and the other left. There will be two women grinding together; one will be taken and the other left.” And they said to him, “Where, Lord?” He said to them, “Where the body is, there the eagles will be gathered together.”

The Gospel of the Lord.

TODAY’S REFLECTION
One of the biblical characteristics of the end of time is its unpredictability: nobody knows when the Son of man will come. ‘As it was in the time of Noah and Sodom, people were living in sin, but suddenly their end came, and so will it be with the coming of the Son of man.’ Today we are called to be always ready. A great danger that constantly threatens us is that of procrastination. Sometimes we keep living in sin and postpone our reconciliation with God, believing we have enough time. Nobody knows the day or the hour; so it is better to be safe than sorry. Let us always be prepared like the wise virgins so that, when Christ comes, he will find us ready.

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