But back to the Apocalypse. I prefer it's Greek title because it seems to avoid an open invitation to make the revelations within it stand on their own. It was a revelation to St John but one which was left largely not interpreted over the years. In some of the Eastern Churches it's actually not read publicly for fear of causing confusion. In the Latin rite it is there but it's use is quite reserved to particular poetic moments. This is not to belittle it's value within the Canon but rather it stands in a very difficult place of being very hard to understand. The history of Post 16th century Christianity is littered with failed attempts to make it's prophecies fit with contemporary events.
So when we are tempted to see doom and gloom in the future, and I've just walked past some old fashioned apocalyptic preachers in the street, when we are particularly tempted to see an event as an omen of the end of all times, when something happens in the Church we just cannot fathom, we need to grab hold of the balance that the Catholic Church gives too all of these things tempering them with the promises of Heaven and of eternal life. Promises made possible by the sacrifice that we celebrate in these days.