Daniel begins the prophecy we hear today warning of a terrible time, “a time unsurpassed in distress” (Daniel 12:1), but immediately assures his audience that God’s chosen will escape, aided by those who lead them like the stars in the sky. Before GPS or even electricity, stars were used to guide travelers to their destination. We are called to be those stars now, beacons of light, reflecting Christ our Light for others to follow to justice, to life forever. We also seek out the light that others provide as they reflect Christ in the way they live their lives. Let us be as the angels Jesus describes in the Gospel, assisting the Lord by drawing others to justice, drawing them to peace. Nothing can focus our minds like a deadline. Knowing a project must be finished by a certain day means that one cannot ignore it in the time leading up to that deadline. Vigilance focus our minds as well, but it can be difficult to sustain. If you don’t know the day or hour of the deadline, it is difficult to remain vigilant. However, Jesus will not come to us only at the end of time. Jesus will come to us at any hour and on any day. We just need to recognize him. He may come as a stranger in need or a friend in pain. He may come into our hearts at a significant time or when we least expect it. It may not seem glorious in the least, but Jesus comes in a ways great and small every day. Let us be vigilant in keeping watch for him. Jesus comes to us in this hour on this day in the Eucharist. In the simple gifts of bread and wine, which are made holy in imitation of that first Eucharist twenty centuries ago, Jesus is present in a special way every time we celebrate Mass. Let us receive him in the Eucharist, conscious of his presence within us – and within our neighbor – as we live this day made holy in his coming. Amen. (Casey, Most Reverend Robert G. Pastoral Patterns. World Library Publication, 2021).