The parable we hear this coming Sunday is the one about the 10 maidens waiting for the wedding party to arrive. Five of them did not anticipate that the bridal party might be delayed, so they did not bring enough oil. The early Christians did not know when Christ would come again and end time as they knew it. So constant watchfulness was a recommended virtue! Fast forward to today. Even though there was a prediction this past September that the world would end (and of course, it didn’t), most of us know that it will be eons before our star burns out and life on earth ends. Maybe that lulls us into not paying attention to our inner lives! We think we have all the time in the world. But in fact, our own lives will end, and we don’t know when and how that will happen. Jesus told his followers not to be anxious, but this parable tells us to be watchful! Watchfulness means stopping, listening, being still, noticing the inner movements in our hearts, our families, our communities. When we do that with attention, with mindfulness, we notice when we need more “oil” — more sustenance for our souls, so that we can walk the walk for the long haul with the Lord. Does your life have times to be not anxious but watchful?
– Blog entry by Sister Mary Garascia