Monday, February 11, 2008

Monday of the First Week of Lent


GOSPEL. ST. MATT, xxv:31-46

(The Last Judgment and the Death-Sweat of Jesus on Mt. Olivet.)

At that time Jesus said to His disciples: When the Son of Man shall come in His majesty, and all the angels with Him, there shall He sit upon the seat of His majesty. And all the nations shall be gathered together before Him, and He shall separate them one from another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats: and He shall set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on His left. Then shall the King say to them that shall be on His right hand: Come ye blessed of My Father, possess you the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me to eat: I was thirsty, and you gave me to drink: I was a stranger and you took Me in: naked, and you covered me: sick, and you visited me: I was in prison, and you came to me. Then shall the just answer Him, saying: Lord, when did we see Thee hungry, and fed Thee? thirsty, and gave Thee to drink? and when did we see Thee a stranger, and took Thee in? or naked, and clothed Thee? or when did we see Thee sick or in prison, and come to Thee ? And the King answering shall say to them: Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these My least brethren, you did it to Me. Then He shall say to them also that shall be on the left hand: Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry, and you gave me not to eat: I was thirsty, and you gave me not to drink: I was a stranger and you took me not in: naked, and you covered me not: sick and in prison, and you did not visit Me. Then they also shall answer Him, saying: Lord, when did we see Thee hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister to Thee? He shall answer them, saying: Amen I say to you, as long as you did it not to one of these least, neither did you do it to Me. And these shall go into everlasting punishment, but the just into life everlasting.

You must be inspired with fear, Christian Soul, when you reflect upon this gospel. The eternal Judge, the eternal Light, will reveal in your particular judgment, and also in the general judgment, before all mankind, all your sinful thoughts, words, actions and omissions. All the immodest looks of your eyes, all the injustice of your hands, all the calumniating words of your mouth, all the uncleanness of your body all this you shall see also as clear as noonday in contrast with the innocence of Jesus Who suffered untold pains for you. But also the smallest good that you have thought, spoken, performed or suffered while in the state of grace and actuated by a good intention will not be forgotten, but will redound to your honor and shine in the brilliant majesty of the eternal Judge. O see that there be very little evil, and very much good to record in your life, so that you may occupy a place on the right hand of your Savior on judgment day. It all depends on you. As an angel from heaven came and comforted Jesus in His bloody sweat on Mt. Olives; so in your death-agony all your good works shall become for you angels of consolation pacifying the eternal Judge.


Convert us, O God, our salvation, and that the fast of Lent may benefit us, instruct our minds with heavenly doctrine.

O Jesus, our only Judge, through Thy death-agony, have mercy on us and grant us the grace to repent of all the sins of our past life, and never more to offend Thee. Since Thou art infinitely good and dost not wish the death of a sinner, enable us to live a Godfearing life that we may be fit to appear before Thee, when we die, and when Thou wilt judge both the living and the dead. Amen.

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