September 23, 2018 Sunday
Gospel Mark 9:30-37
“If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the servant of all.”
The apostles were discussing who among them was the greatest. Jesus corrected their misconceptions about greatness by placing a child in their midst. He reminded them that “If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.”
The child’s simplicity, willingness to be taught and molded, and dependence on the Father are characteristics Jesus is inviting us to imbibe as His true followers.
Mother Mary, help us to replace our desire to be served with a desire to serve. May we be truly Jesus’ voice, hands and feet serving with integrity against the skewed standard of greatness the world gives.
September 21, 2018 Friday
Gospel Matthew 9: 9-13
“Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do.”
As we celebrate the Feast of Saint Matthew, today’s reading narrates how Jesus called Matthew as He passed by the customs post. It could have been just like any ordinary day of collection for Matthew, but with Jesus’ call to “follow Him” and Matthew’s immediate response, his entire life was never the same. From sinner, he became a saint.
Jesus calls us to follow Him in our day-to-day experiences, amidst our ordinary circumstances. He seeks to be with us especially when we are most vulnerable or feel most unworthy of His love so that his mercy can transform us from sinner to saint one day at a time.
St. Matthew, pray for us to be quick to follow Christ.
September 17, 2018 - Monday
Gospel: Luke 7:1-10
"But say the word and let my servant be healed!"
These words came froma Roman-officer, a centurion and Jesus was amazed by his humility and faith- that despite his position and power, he treated his slave like kin and sought Jesus’ presence, even though he felt unworthy to receive Him.
It reminds us that faith can’t only be seen in holy places and among holy people. Faith can be manifested even in the most unlikely situations. It only takes genuine concern, humility and conviction.
Mother Mary pray for us that we may not be hindered in approaching Jesus and trust in His amazing power. Amen.
September 16, 2018 - Sunday
Gospel: Mark 8:27-33
And He charged them not to tell anyone about Him
Regarding the stuff we desire in our life, there is our time and then there is God's time. And all the time, God's timing is the best. Often in the Gospels, we hear Jesus telling the disciples not to tell anyone about Him. It is the same in today's passage when the disciples acknowledge Jesus as the Messiah, a divine revelation. Its likely that Jesus felt people would misunderstand if the disciples spread the word about Him at that time. When He was resurrected and conquered death, it was then that He commissioned the disciples to go to the ends of the earth to spread the Word.
Are there moments too when we experience Jesus telling us to wait? Telling us gently, it is not yet time? In the same way that there is divine revelation, there is divine patience! It is a patience that is founded on our faith in God's plan and our hope that God knows best. It is also a patience that comes from prayer, from listening to God's voice in our day to day life.
In the gospel reading, its mentioned that Jesus "spoke plainly". Its the same with us. God speaks to us plainly and constantly throughout our day. Let us strive always to keep attuned to Him as He encourages us to keep up our faith. When we are waiting for something good to happen, wait in faith. When we are waiting for the solution to a problem, wait in faith. When we want so much to say something but feel that its not the right time, wait in faith.
Lord, may we trust in You that You make things happen in the perfect time. Help us to keep close to You that we may wait in faith as the moment demand
September 12, 2018 - Wednesday
Gospel: Luke 6:20-26
Blessed are you who hunger, for you shall be satisfied
What is so blessed about suffering and being in want? This is a normal human question and one that has occupied many of my prayers, especially during times of distress.
It’s only after the crisis passes and I look back that I truly see what blessings there are. The first is the blessing of making it thru the difficulty. The second is the realization that, as you go through the hard times, I was always able to find a way to go on and to make do. But perhaps most importantly, I find God abiding with me in suffering like a true friend.
It is then I come to better understand what it means to “be satisfied”. Survivors of calamities sometimes mention that when they lose every possession they have, they find that God does suffice and that He is more than what we seek.
Lord, may we put our trust in Your unfailing love in moments of our hunger.
September 11, 2018 - Tuesday
Gospel: Luke 6:12-19
And he came down with them and stood on a level place
It’s a buzzword these days — servant leadership. But what does it really mean? Jesus Himself told us that if we want to be first in the Kingdom, we should put others before ourselves. But Jesus did much more than talk about it. He practiced in order to show others the way.
When He commissions the disciples, it’s said that He came down with them. He accompanied them in their very mission. What’s more He stood with them “on a level place”, perhaps so that He would not set Himself above the people but be among them. in our own lives, Jesus practices this kind of leadership—He accompanies us everyday through our struggles and difficulties. He helps us carry our burdens and gives us what we need to fulfill our mission.
Lord, thank you for how you love and serve us. May Your example always shine a light on our life as disciples, that we will serve others as You do.
Sept 10, 2018 - Monday
Gospel: Luke 6:6-11
Stretch out your hand.
Whenever we feel ill and go to the hospital, chances are the doctor would ask to do a blood test on us. Quite literally, we need to stretch out our hand for the nurse to extract the blood. It’s painful but necessary if we want to get well, just like the man with the withered hand.
But there are times when, even if we are not sick, Jesus calls us to stretch out our hand. Perhaps to help a friend, give alms to the poor, or comfort a relative. Or perhaps even just to extend mercy to others.
Perhaps Jesus’ words in the gospel today were meant not just for the man with the withered hand but also to the pharisees. That they may become more compassionate towards others.
Lord, help us to stretch out our hands to those in need that we ourselves will be healed from our selfish ways.
September 9, 2018 - Sunday
Gospel Mark 7: 31-37
In today's gospel a person who is deaf and dumb was brought to Jesus. A deaf or a person bearing impairment before were considered being judged for sin, they thought people with this kind of situations were being possessed with evil spirit. But when Jesus put His finger into the man's ears he said Ephphatha that means be opened, the man is able to hear and speak.
Sometimes, we are also blinded or being deaf, not like the one Jesus healed in the Gospel, but like the people who don't understand the situation of others. Sometimes we close ourselves to the ones who need our openness.
Today Jesus calls us to reflect on the areas of our lives that we need to open for others.
Let us also ask Mother Mary to pray for us that we may open our eyes, ears and heart to listen to the word of God. Amen.
September 8, 2018 - Saturday
Gospel: Matthew 1: 1-23
Emmanuel, God is with us.
Today we celebrate the feast of the nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Today's Gospel gives us the list of the ancestors of Jesus. This tells us who Jesus is and how God acts in a surprising way in order to fulfill his promise. In our identity there is our name and the name of our parents and ancestors. Our ancestors plays a big part of who we are.
It is God's wonderful mystery that Jesus came from an ancestry not of righteous persons but of sinners - a testimony how God wanted to be with us even though we are unworthy. And in order for the prophecy to come true, Jesus was born by a woman who is not touched by sin - Mary.
Mary is already in the mind of God when a prophecy of a woman who would be the mother of His child came - a child who would be called Emmanuel, God is with us. Her "yes" to the will of God bearing Jesus fulfill the promise of salvation for all of us.
May we be like Mother Mary that we may also be the bearers of Jesus in this world. Amen.
September 7, 2018 Friday
Gospel: Luke 5: 33-39
Do you allow Jesus to renew you?
In today's gospel, the tradition became the comfort of the Pharisees. There was a security in the familiar. It became their comfort zone following traditions that they inherited.
Jesus was not breaking any law of God when He and his disciples did not fast more often. Jesus was not being less spiritual. He was only violating the customs, traditions set up by the Pharisees and Sadducees to help people keep the law of God.
Jesus reminds us today that our responsibility is to obey the Lord. Let us pray to know and see what is of the Lord and what is not.
When we allow Jesus to come into our lives, we are converted and renewed from being sinners to becoming sons and daughters of God. Let us allow God to renew our way of life to become the change of this society obeying the law of the Lord.
Pope Francis told that "Being Christian means allowing oneself to be renewed by Jesus in this new life."
Let us ask Mother Mary to pray for us that like her, may we be open to be changed and renewed by God's love. Amen.