The theme of this Sunday is “the Wisdom in Being Prepared and spiritually vigilant for the Lord’s coming.” As we draw close to the end of the liturgical year, our attention is now drawn in the readings to our preparations for a spiritual ending of the year and a purposeful end of our lives.

Thus, the first reading from the Book of Wisdom showed us that wisdom is a necessary virtue for living this purposeful life. Having it makes everything clear to us. It reminded us that wisdom is radiant and unfading. It is easily discerned by her lovers and is found by her seekers. Wisdom is the key to being prepared for the coming of the Lord. We must seek wisdom and make it part of our lives.

In the second reading, St. Paul, writing to the Thessalonians, tells us the comforting truth of our faith about those who have fallen asleep before us. We should not grieve as those without hope because those who die in God are not less fortunate than we are. At the Lord’s command, they will be the first to rise. Just as Jesus rose from the dead, God will raise all who have fallen asleep in Him. The purpose of our life is that we live eternally with God. It is something worth preparing for in all wisdom and insight.

In the Gospel from St. Matthew, we hear the parable of the ten bridesmaids. Five of them who were wise brought extra oil with them for their lamps, while the other five who were foolish did not. When the bridegroom came, the wise bridesmaids were ready, but the foolish ones were not. We must be like the wise bridesmaids and be prepared for the coming of the Lord.

As the responsorial psalm states, our soul’s ultimate thirst is for God. Everything we do is part of our preparation for God. It will be a wise choice if our actions are drawing us closer to God and grace. Let us be like those wise bridesmaids in the gospel whose preparatory action of getting extra oil for their lamps placed them at a vantage point, ready for the bridegroom in the dreary days. Let us be prepared for the coming of the Lord, whether we are awake or asleep.

The Announcer! – 32nd Sunday of Ordinary Time