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Our Lady of Victory / St. Malachy
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Our Lady of Victory
490 Charles Street
Gatineau, Québec
J8L 2K5

Mass:     Sunday   9:00 AM
            Thursday 10:00 AM

St. Malachy
3889 Route 315
Mayo, Québec
J8L 3Z8

Mass: Saturday 7:00 PM





Fr. Albanus’ Reflections on the Sunday Liturgy

Jesus, the Sadducees and Resurrection
Towards the end of the liturgical year, the readings usually become more eschatological -- having to do with the end times. The main theme of today’s readings is the reality of life after death and of the relationship between our lives on earth and the life of glory or punishment that will follow. The readings invite us to consider the true meaning of the Resurrection in our lives. The first reading, taken from the second book of Maccabees, tells a story of a Jewish family, consisting of a mother and her seven sons, who refused to give in to the pressure from the Syrian King to eat pork, forbidden as “unclean” by Jewish Law. Because of their Faith in, and obedience to, God, they endured suffering and accepted martyrdom. During their torture, three of the brothers spoke, and each of them found strength in the belief that they will eventually be raised and rewarded by God. The second reading dwells on the second coming of Jesus. St. Paul encourages the Thessalonians, waiting for the second coming of Christ, to trust in the fidelity of God who would strengthen their hearts in every good work and word. The Gospel also carries the same theme of the resurrection of the dead. This is the basis of the confrontation described in the Gospel between Jesus and the Sadducees. Jesus ingeniously escapes from a doctrinal trap set for him and explains the doctrine of the resurrection of the dead. The resurrection is supported by the Pharisees and denied by the Sadducees.

The Sadducees regard the resurrection of the dead as an unorthodox innovation. Putting the Mosaic Law on Levirate marriage (Deut 25:5) to the fore they try to ridicule the idea of the resurrection of the dead. Jesus speaks of God as the God of the living; He also explains that Heavenly life with God in glory is totally different from earthly life, and that there is no marriage in heaven in the earthly sense. The resurrection from the dead, according to Him belongs to those who “are accounted worthy.” As children of God, they cannot die again and so, marriage does not apply to them. With this, Jesus makes the question of the Sadducees irrelevant. As resurrected sons and daughters, their relationship is as members of the same family. Marriage among them therefore does not make sense heavenly wise.

Jesus puts forward the idea that is also appealing to the Sadducees: that God is the God of the living. Moses in the past has described God as the “God of Abraham, Isaac and of Jacob”. If He is the God of the living, then He will continue to be so to those who have died. Relationship with God does not end in death: to God all people are alive. Through this argument Jesus reveals His image of God – a God who keeps His promise to His faithful ones even when they die. This is true even so in Jesus’ own case. He undergoes death and experiences the glory of the resurrection. God refuses to let death have the last word in his case. The Risen Jesus is the greatest argument against the Sadducees!

Brothers and sisters, we need to live like the people of the Resurrection. This means that we are not to lie buried in the tomb of our sins and evil habits. Instead, we are to live joyful and peaceful lives, constantly experiencing the real Presence of the Risen Lord. In addition, the hope of our resurrection and eternal life with God gives us lasting peace and celestial joy amid the boredom and tensions of our day-to-day lives. The awareness of the all-pervading Presence of the Holy Spirit will help us to control our thoughts, desires, words and behaviors. The salutary thought of our own resurrection and eternal glory, or eternal punishment, should also inspire us to honour our bodies, keeping them holy, pure and free from evil habits, and to respect those with whom we come in contact, rendering them loving and humble service.

We need to offer living worship to a living God. If our God is the God of the living, our worship of this living God also has to be alive. Our participation in prayers and songs during the Holy Mass should be active and our behavior in Church reverent, as we offer our lives and all our activities to our living God on the altar with repentant and grateful hearts.

Happy Sunday!


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490 Charles Street • Gatineau • Québec • J8L 2K5
Telephone: (819) 986-3763
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