Catholic Mass Readings
November 17 Saturday
32ND WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
3 John 5-8
My dear friend, you have done loyal work in helping these brothers, even though they were strangers to you. They are a proof to the whole Church of your love and it would be a kindness if you could help them on their journey as God would approve. It was entirely for the sake of the name that they set out, without depending on the non-believers for anything: it is our duty to welcome people of this sort and contribute our share to their work for the truth.
Jesus told his disciples a parable about the need to pray continually and never lose heart. ‘There was a judge in a certain town,’ he said, ‘who had neither fear of God nor respect for anyone. In the same town there was also a widow who kept on coming to him and saying, “I want justice from you against my enemy!” For a long time he refused, but at last he said to himself, “Even though I have neither fear of God nor respect for any human person, I must give this widow her just rights since she keeps pestering me, or she will come and slap me in the face.” And the Lord said, ‘You notice what the unjust judge has to say? Now, will not God see justice done to his elect if they keep calling to him day and night even though he still delays to help them? I promise you, he will see justice done to them, and done speedily. But when the Son of man comes, will he find any faith on earth?’
Jesus illustrates how God as our Judge is much quicker to bring us his justice, blessing, and help when we need it. But we can easily lose heart and forget to ask our Heavenly Father for his grace and help. Jesus told this parable to give fresh hope and confidence to his disciples. In this present life we can expect trials and adversity, but we should still have hope in God. The Last Judgment will reveal that God’s justice triumphs over all the injustices perpetrated by his creatures and that God’s love is stronger than death. If we want to live, grow, and persevere in the faith until the end, then we must nourish it with His word and ask the Lord to increase it. When trials and setbacks disappoint you, where do you place your hope? Do you pray with expectant faith and confidence in God’s merciful care and providence for you?