Today, we have the familiar account[1] of the sensible bridesmaids and the unprepared ones awaiting the bridegroom. Strangely enough, there is no mention of the bride! All the bridesmaids come with their lanterns and some oil. However, not all ten are really ready for the coming of the bridegroom – who may turn up later than expected, like many a bride has done in the past and will in the future!


In this piece the bridegroom refers to Jesus at the Parousia – sometimes called the end time or as the Second Coming of Christ. The bridesmaids represent the Church. Each of us members are called to be ready – for we do not know the day or the hour of our own death, or that of the Second Coming of Christ.


Sufficient oil, stands for our actions of love and mercy in obedience to the Commandments and the Beatitudes.[2] Insufficient - our lack of corresponding with God’s grace to live as he has asked to on this earth so that we can enter the eternal Wedding Feast in heaven.


Crying out “Lord, Lord” – as did the foolish bridesmaids, will be to no avail. Each of us has to be prepared for judgement. There is no room for a mañana attitude – time slips by -  oh so quickly. Now is the time. Now is the time to get enthusiastic about the final wedding and have ourselves clothed in the virtues, clothed in good deeds, clothed in the bridal robe of love – to meet eternal Love, the Blessed Trinity, face to face.


Sr. Rosaleen Shaw OP




[1] Matt. 25:1-13

[2] NIV Bible Commentary, p.450


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