Thursday 8 July 2021

Thursday of Week 20 Year 1

I sometimes wonder whether some of us have begun taking Mass or Holy Communion for granted. How many of us are properly prepared to come and participate at Mass, and receive Holy Communion properly and worthily? Do we observe important preparations such as the 1 hour fast before Holy Communion; and how many of us are regular for the Sacrament of Confession, in an effort to try receive Holy Communion in the state of grace? Do we assume that we have the right or entitlement to receive Holy Communion, come what may? Also, are we coming for Mass just for the sake of fulfilling the Sunday obligation?

In today's Gospel, which is about the Parable of the Wedding Feast, we could pick up three important "I's" for us to reflect on. The first I is Invitation. The Lord invites us every day to come to his banquet. He has it all prepared; but it is up to us to accept his invitation. We must be prepared to come when it is ready, instead of making all sorts of excuses or conditions. Are we willing to come with sincere and honest acceptance, at the moment he calls? The second I is Indifference. Those invited were indifferent. They ignored the invitation and went about their own businesses and works. They ignored the Lord. Just imagine, God Himself inviting us and then we have the audacity to say “No” to his invitation because we have other things to do. Have we become indifferent towards Mass and even indifferent in preparing before Mass? The third I is Inappropriate. Here, the concern is not so much on how we dress for the Eucharistic celebration, though this does not give us any excuse not to dress our Sunday best. The main concern here is more on how we are in Church: our inner disposition; whether our hearts are properly dressed. We may be physically present in church, but in reality some of us may actually be mentally absent.

The question that we need to ask ourselves sincerely is this: the Eucharistic celebration is like the Wedding Feast in today's Gospel. We are already invited to come to God's banquet, and we are expected to come and be properly disposed to come. But are we really ready and properly disposed to come? May we take seriously our inner disposition, lest we end up "bound hand and foot and thrown out into the dark, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth."

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