It’s A Relationship – Fr. Viet Nguyen

Fr. Viet Nguyen’s Homily November 7, 2020

“St. Augustine had this phrase. It really echoes to all of us. ‘Our hearts are restless until they rest in you my God.’ Our hearts are restless until they rest in you. Think about that. Think about the desires of your life, of your heart and where does it lead you? Sometimes we really don’t reflect on that. Sometimes we just grasp at what’s in front of us. In our Gospel today, it starts to talk about the end times. It’s the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time so we are getting to the end of our Liturgical year and it kind of coincides with the seasons as the fall is coming and we go into the dormant of winter and so the end times. It talks about the end times of our lives, the Kingdom of Heaven and it talks about this story of 10 virgins having their lamps. What does that mean? Jesus is saying this story, it really relates to the times that he was alive. Our weddings are more focused on our brides today, but back then it was more about the bridegroom that at a certain time the bridegroom would come in the night and the virgins would light their lamps and so follow him. Really the virgins are, you would say, the bridesmaids and so it echoes of this image that Christ is the bridegroom and the Church is his bride and Christ is coming to consummate this marriage with us and are we prepared? The wise virgins and the fools, there’s two. The wise ones keep their oil stocked ready and the fools don’t. Now how does that relate to us? What is this oil? What does it mean to us today? And it really is keeping our focus on what we’re made for and that’s why I say our hearts are restless until they rest in you my God. What is your life about? What is your life pointing to? Oftentimes in the secular world our life is so busy that we don’t think of our death and the end times. Maybe we’re afraid of it? Maybe we’re holding on to our lives trying to extend it? But like the second reading says today, of St. Paul when he restored his relationship with God that if we die with Christ it is also believed that we will rise with Him again and we don’t have to be afraid of death, to look at it, to acknowledge it, but that it’s just a part of life. It’s a transformation that happens within it and so are you prepared for your death? We do not know the hour or the time and so we must prepare ourselves. The oil for these virgins is really keeping our light shining brightly. Each one of us was baptised and were given the light of Christ from the Easter Candle and your parents and your Godparents were told, ‘Keep this light burning brightly.’ Keep it burning brightly. Are you keeping it burning brightly, the light of Christ in your life? What does that look like? Are you praying each day? Are you growing your relationship with God? Do you see God in your life? The sacraments, do you come to the sacraments? Do you receive the sacraments? The sacraments are there to help sustain our spiritual life in Christ. Do you pray the Rosary? The Rosary points us to our death if you pray the Rosary. ‘In the hour of our death, amen. In the hour of our death, amen. Really, if you pray the Rosary, you are saying it 50 times. You’re reflecting on the hour of you death, but also in your everyday life, are you building your relationship with your family? Sustaining it, growing within it? Are you focused on the present or are we focused on something else? It’s to sustain our life in Christ, then do we read about God? Do we read and search for things of God? Read the scriptures. Read the encyclicals. Study the tradition of the Church. Sometimes I think that we know more about politics than we know about God. What is important in your life? What is truly important in your life? The fools see our faith as something they can grasp, something they can buy, they can consume like everything else, but really it’s a relationship. It’s one that needs to be cultivated, sustained and the life of the Church gives you all of the resources. Are you taking advantage of it? The great hope for us, especially at the end of this Gospel is that ‘do not wait’ Christ says, ‘for we do not know the day nor the hour.’ That means he is encouraging us to start now if we haven’t and if we have to persist, to continue persisting. So as you come before the Lord today where Christ is truly present before you in the Eucharist, let us continue to have the strength and the courage to look at our lives honestly, to see are we feeding our souls with the light of Christ? Are we keeping that light of Christ within us, given in our baptism, burning brightly? As we receive the Eucharist, let it nurture and sustain you so as to live your life as Christ has seen it for you. Amen.”