All posts filed under: Ordinary Time

2ND SUNDAY: COME AND SEE

If you’re searching for an excellent text as a tool for parish evangelization – a plan of action, so to speak, in all ages across cultures, look no further. The initial encounter of the two would-be disciples (Andrew and the other unidentified person, let’s say it’s you) with Jesus begins with the renowned and highly acclaimed prophet pointing them to the lamb of God prompting them to leave him behind. Imaginably, it must have been a poignant scenario as it’s not easy to let go of an inspiring preacher in a heartbeat. At any rate, there’s always someone or something that will bring you to God: a mentor, a shady past, a personal issue or name it. What are you looking for in 2018? Have you come up with something? or given up before making a move? And the answer is, Teacher! Andrew along with the anonymous fellow says it out loud (italics mine). They are on-the-hunt for someone to teach them about the depths of life, obviously found only in God and the precursor …

HOMILY 30TH SUNDAY OT

GROUND YOUR LIFE IN THE LOVE OF GOD AND NEIGHBOR The demand to love God with all your heart, soul and mind and your neighbor as yourself taken together is by far, the highest Christian duty. It is a complete recipe that combines the divine and human tenets as the hinge, the bearing wall from which all the rest hang on. Though the love of God is the first and the greatest which precedes everything else, in this context, it is juxtaposed with the love of neighbor as yourself and therefore, both are of equal weight, of the same level of importance bound together such that no one can ever afford to do without. Love of God may seem invisible but it is the basis, the inspiration and the driving force of every charitable act. Divine love can be attained through prayer exercises, communal liturgies, scripture reading, among others. The unassuming, often-ignored and tiny consecrated host exposed in the blessed sacrament every Friday brings/communicates special affection for the invisible among us. Last Sunday, the HS …

HOMILY 25TH SUNDAY ORDINARY TIME

TREAT OTHERS FAIRLY AND EQUALLY For the past few weeks, the sense of community has been the dominant theme. The story of the generous household owner and the grumbling workers is no different. It puts into spotlight the extravagant generosity of God and the all-important solidarity that must be practiced among laborers in the vineyard. If, at first, it doesn’t sit well with our understanding of equal pay for equal amount of work, it’s because it’s not about economics. The parable is addressed to an increasingly diverse religious community that constantly struggle with one’s relationship with God and one another. The concern emanates from a handful of people that is, you and me, who perform the lion’s share of the job day in and day out in the church, doing everything we can to keep the institution up and running while others don’t bother at all. Accordingly, those who treat Sunday obligation as optional, show up only once a year, will be treated fair and square. If this were true, that means, those who of …

HOMILY 17TH SUNDAY OT

SACRIFICE ALL FOR HOLINESS SAKE The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure buried in the field that a man accidentally finds, hides it and buries it again and bursting with joy and gladness at the unexpected discovery, sells everything he has and buys the property. The Kingdom of Heaven is like a traveling wholesaler constantly and diligently in search of fine pearls and after finding one of great price, sells all he has and purchase it. These are twin parables that highlight the infinite value of the thing found as well as the enormous amount of effort and the sacrifice made to obtain it. Only a handful know what’s in store in the surprising discovery of the concealed treasure and the priceless gem that prompted the two to do everything at their disposal even if it meant giving up all in order to gain it. And to state the obvious, the value goes beyond anything they have ever seen. Solomon, inexperienced in taking over the Kingdom of his father David, begged God for an …

SOLEMNITY OF CHRIST THE KING

On the last Sunday in Ordinary Time, Holy Mother Church celebrates the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ King of the Universe which marks the end of the Church’s liturgical calendar. This weekend too in many parishes worldwide formally concludes the year of mercy Pope Francis has announced through the bull Miserecordia Vultus back in December 8, 2015. This feast (elevated into a Solemnity by Pope John XXIII) was formally instituted by His Holiness Pius XI in his December 11, 1925 Encyclical Quas Primas “that the faithful would gain strength and courage from the celebration of the feast, as we are reminded that Christ must reign in our hearts, minds, wills, and bodies (# 33).” It was a classic response to the rapidly growing disbelief among Catholics in Christ’s saving message enormously influenced by secularism, a belief that decries anything spiritual and religious, a manner of life as if God, the supreme being that inhabits the vast universe: from the largest galaxy to the tiniest sub-atomic particle, doesn’t exist and nothing beyond the physical world. At a time when …

33RD SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

As the liturgical season slowly draws to a close suggesting an end- of- times religious tone, we are reminded once again not to panic but stay calm despite the impending dangers of wars and revolutions and endless threats to national security. We are told that disasters such as earthquakes, plagues and famines do happen and terribly catch us by surprise yet, it’s not the end. There will be tomorrow and will arrive sooner than expected. Jesus says, “when you hear of wars and insurrections, do not be terrified; for such things must happen first, but it will not be immediately the end. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be powerful earthquakes, famines and plagues from place to place and awesome sights and mighty signs will come from the sky” (Lk. 21:9-11). Some things remain, others passing. I’ve never followed politics this close in my life. I avoided it like a poison and ignored it like the annoying repetitious call of a debt collector. I skipped that section of the paper. …