Mal 3:19-20 The Letter to the Hebrews tells us quite clearly that it is appointed unto to man to live and then die and then there is judgement (9:26-27). There are many examples of images of judgement in the Scriptures. This one from the Prophet Malachi tells us of the purifying nature of judgement. If we are judged fit for eternal life, the fires of purification will come to cleanse us of all our sins and their effects. We do not know if this is exactly what will happen when we are judged, but suffice it to say, that if we are destined for eternal life, there will be a necessary process of persecution to be undertaken.

Jesus, the Church’s understanding of Purgatory is that it is a state of purification following judgement. The process of purification may not be a pleasant experience but the knowledge that this is the last step before heaven will mean that we will be happy to undergo purification.

2Thes 3:7-12 All Christians have a responsibility to provide a good example to others, both Christian and otherwise. This means that we must seek to actively contribute to the life of the community to which we belong. Each of us will have different tasks to accomplish and talents to contribute. It is only if we all give 100% to this duty that the community to which we belong will become witness of His love that God wants us to be.

Holy Spirit, help me to discover what my contribution to my community should be. Reveal to me the plan of God in this regard and grant me the grace to fulfil my responsibility.

Lk 21:5-19 Jesus speaks of a time of persecution and difficulty for the Christian community. Perhaps he was referring in the first instance to the persecution that would accompany the expulsion of the new Christian sect from Temple and synagogue worship. I think that it is equally likely that He is referring to the ongoing trials and difficulties that the Church has faced in every age including our own!

Lord, help me to draw strength form your Passion and death in order to face the trials that are and will confront me on my journey to eternal life. With you at my side I know that there is nothing that is too big to be overcome.