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Daily Catholic Question

What does Jesus' Second Coming mean?

As the year 2000 approached, one of the promises Jesus made to his disciples received increasing attention: "I will come again." Due to a variety of sources (Scripture, fundamentalist sects and persons, and various prophecies) this teaching has undergone a long and varied history of interpretation.

What does it mean when one speaks of Jesus coming in glory? Is there a specific time involved? Can the Book of Revelation be a guide? Will "the end" be a time of destruction or new birth? These are some of the questions that are asked when language of the "second coming" is spoken.

All this talk may lead you to think that all that is important is in the next life. This is not the case. The Church and sacraments are resources that Christians have been given to live out the message of Christ in the here and now. Your sights, therefore, need to be set on this world while recognizing fulfillment is the next.

The first three things that usually come to mind when thinking of "judgment of the living and the dead" are heaven, hell and purgatory. These words have their limitations as well as their truth. How might judgment ' be expressed today? What are Christians judged upon? Where do fairness and mercy come together?

Finally, Jesus' ministry was about the Kingdom—a place where God's peace and presence reign. Jesus used a banquet, a wedding feast and other parables to describe this ''place.'' Is the kingdom a place or more a state of being? Ultimately, it must be admitted that it is hard for the Church—you and me—to talk about things that can't be seen, only imagined.


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Tuesday, July 9, 2013
Daily Catholic Question for 7/8/2013 Daily Catholic Question for 7/10/2013


James: This James is the brother of John the Evangelist. The two were called by Jesus as they worked with their father in a fishing boat on the Sea of Galilee. Jesus had already called another pair of brothers from a similar occupation: Peter and Andrew. “He walked along a little farther and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They too were in a boat mending their nets. Then he called them. So they left their father Zebedee in the boat along with the hired men and followed him” (Mark 1:19-20). 
<p>James was one of the favored three who had the privilege of witnessing the Transfiguration, the raising to life of the daughter of Jairus and the agony in Gethsemani. </p><p>Two incidents in the Gospels describe the temperament of this man and his brother. St. Matthew tells that their mother came (Mark says it was the brothers themselves) to ask that they have the seats of honor (one on the right, one on the left of Jesus) in the kingdom. “Jesus said in reply, ‘You do not know what you are asking. Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?’ They said to him, ‘We can’” (Matthew 20:22). Jesus then told them they would indeed drink the cup and share his baptism of pain and death, but that sitting at his right hand or left was not his to give—it “is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father” (Matthew 20:23b). It remained to be seen how long it would take to realize the implications of their confident “We can!” </p><p>The other disciples became indignant at the ambition of James and John. Then Jesus taught them all the lesson of humble service: The purpose of authority is to serve. They are not to impose their will on others, or lord it over them. This is the position of Jesus himself. He was the servant of all; the service imposed on him was the supreme sacrifice of his own life. </p><p>On another occasion, James and John gave evidence that the nickname Jesus gave them—“sons of thunder”—was an apt one. The Samaritans would not welcome Jesus because he was on his way to hated Jerusalem. “When the disciples James and John saw this they asked, ‘Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?’ Jesus turned and rebuked them...” (Luke 9:54-55). </p><p>James was apparently the first of the apostles to be martyred. “About that time King Herod laid hands upon some members of the church to harm them. He had James, the brother of John, killed by the sword, and when he saw that this was pleasing to the Jews he proceeded to arrest Peter also” (Acts 12:1-3a). </p><p>This James, sometimes called James the Greater, is not to be confused with James the Lesser (May 3) or with the author of the Letter of James and the leader of the Jerusalem community.</p> American Catholic Blog Walk the talk. Show, don’t tell. Values are caught, not taught—all variations of one theme: A good example is essential for good parenting.

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