I am with you always until the end of this world - Jesus (Matthew 28:20).

Preach the Word in season and out of season reproving, rebuking or advising always with patience and providing instructions (2 Timothy 4:2).

Do not fear, Mary, for God has looked kindly on you. (Luke 1:30)

Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly. - G. K. Chesterton

Forgive my many grammatical and punctuation mistakes :). - mjdasma

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Reflection for August 1, Saturday, Saint Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop and Doctor of the Church: Matthew 14:1-12

Gospel: Matthew 14:1-12
Herod the tetrarch heard of the reputation of Jesus and said to his servants, “This man is John the Baptist. He has been raised from the dead; that is why mighty powers are at work in him. Now Herod had arrested John, bound him, and put him in prison on account of Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip, for John had said to him “It is not lawful for you to have her. Although he wanted to kill him, he feared the people, for they regarded him as a prophet. But at a birthday celebration for Herod, the daughter of Herodias performed a dance before the guests and delighted Herod so much that he swore to give her whatever she might ask for. Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist. The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and the guests who were present, he ordered that it be given, and he had John beheaded in the prison. His head was brought in on a platter and given to the girl, who took it to her mother. His disciples came and took away the corpse and buried him; and they went and told Jesus.
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Who is King Herod? King Herod is a tyrant a leader who would never think twice to supress anyone who dares to cross his path. He would not only supress Herod could even order the killing of anyone he wants.

Respect for human rights was not part of the vocabulary of Herod, abuse of human rights and dignity was. This was the reason why John the Baptist was imprisoned. John did nothing wrong he simply said what was to be truthfully said yet John suffered for it.  

The Philippines is about to enter presidential election period. And naturally there would be leaders who will promise everything to the electorate. There would be leaders who will try to do everything to get sympathy. Yet we should be watchful not to be swayed by them.

Let us be observant about their pronouncements for this is where they reveal their true personalities. Most especially those that are spontaneous because this is where we could get a glimpse of the true character of an aspirant for the presidency.

Let us be watchful we may bring to the office of the presidency another King Herod. – Marino J. Dasmarinas

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Reflection for July 31, Friday, Saint Ignatius of Loyola, Priest: Matthew 13:54-58

Gospel: Matthew 13:54-58
Jesus came to his native place and taught the people in their synagogue. They were astonished and said, “Where did this man get such wisdom and mighty deeds? Is he not the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother named Mary and his brothers James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas? Are not his sisters all with us? Where did this man get all this?” And they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and in his own house.” And he did not work many mighty deeds there because of their lack of faith.
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Do you sometimes have a selective treatment with your fellowmen?  The town mates of Jesus treated Him with disdain because they knew Him as one of them. They knew His family background and they couldn’t believe that Jesus would be able to do such an exceptional lecture in their synagogue.

Instead of welcoming Him they treated Him with disdain. For they couldn’t accept that this man whom they know very well is now able to talk with wisdom. What drove them to belittle Jesus? It was their arrogance and high sense of themselves. Jesus town mates could not accept that this son of a carpenter could now become a preacher in their synagogue.

Our arrogance and high regard of ourselves will do us no good. It even deprives us of so many blessings from Jesus. Just like what happened to His town mates who were deprived of many blessing from Jesus when they did not accept Him.

Instead of being arrogant be humble, be respectful and always treat everyone as better than you are. Don’t try hard to raise yourself in the consciousness of others, let Jesus do it for you. Thus you will earn the respect of everybody. – Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Reflection for July 30, Thursday, Seventeenth Week in Ordinary Time: Matthew 13:47-53

Gospel: Matthew 13:47-53
Jesus said to the disciples: “The Kingdom of heaven is like a net thrown into the sea, which collects fish of every kind. When it is full they haul it ashore and sit down to put what is good into buckets. What is bad they throw away. Thus it will be at the end of the age. The angels will go out and separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.”

“Do you understand all these things?” They answered, “Yes.” And he replied, “Then every scribe who has been instructed in the Kingdom of heaven is like the head of a household who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.” When Jesus finished these parables, he went away from there.
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A desperate man was set to end his life, when he was about to do it he heard the voice of God which told him not to end his life. The man told God, I am a grievous sinner my Lord I don’t deserve to live anymore, I deserve to die and be in hell. The Lord told the man, I love you my son no matter who you are and no matter what you have done.

The love of God is like a net thrown into the sea which collects fish of every kind (Matthew 13:47). It does not discriminate; it catches every fish, the good and bad alike. The love of God is like this also, it’s for each and everyone of us: sinner and non-sinner alike.

Yet this love that God gives us freely is not also being forced upon us. We also have the freedom if we would respond by renewing our lives or we continue with our sinful ways. If we renew our lives and permanently walkaway from sin then we save our lives.

 But if we continue on sinning notwithstanding the fact that God has already called us. We therefore have to be ready for the grievous consequence that may befall us.  It’s no brainer therefore that we have to discontinue our sinful lives and take advantage of the love of God that he perpetually offers us.

Let us choose to embrace the love of God and permanently dump into oblivion the sinful offering of the devil. For the simple reason that the love of God is heaven on earth. While the sinful offering of the devil will bring us nowhere but hell. - Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Reflection for July 29, Wednesday, Saint Martha: John 11:19-27

Gospel: John 11:19-27
Many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them about their brother [Lazarus, who had died]. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him; but Mary sat at home. Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever you ask of God, God will give you.” Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise.” Martha said to him, “I know he will rise, in the resurrection on the last day.” Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live, and anyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” She said to him, “Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, the one who is coming into the world.
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Who is Jesus to you? Is He your best friend that you always go to whenever you are disturb by the many worries of this world? Jesus was the best friend of the sisters Martha and Mary they have that close interaction with Him.

 When Jesus was going to their house to comfort them about the death of their brother Lazarus. Martha went to meet Jesus while He was still on His way to their house.  Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died (John 11:21).

 If Jesus was an ordinary friend Martha would not have bothered to meet Jesus, she would simply wait for Jesus to arrive in their house. But Jesus was their close friend, thus He met Him halfway.

How could you have a close friendship with Jesus? You have to ask Jesus to be your friend. You have to ask Jesus to increase your faith, you have to attend Holy Mass as frequent as you can. You have to learn more about the life of Jesus by reading your bible.

The best thing that could ever happen to your life is not to have the riches of this world. For it will fade away and you will leave it someday. The best thing that could ever happen to you is to have the friendship of Jesus. For He will always be there for you until forever. This is the best thing that could ever happen to you in this world.

Is Jesus your best friend? – Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Monday, July 27, 2015

Reflection for July 28, Tuesday, Seventeenth Week in Ordinary Time: Matthew 13:36-43

Gospel: Matthew 13:36-43
Jesus dismissed the crowds and went into the house. His disciples approached him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.” He said in reply, “He who sows good seed is the Son of Man, the field is the world, the good seed the children of the Kingdom. The weeds are the children of the Evil One, and the enemy who sows them is the Devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. Just as weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his Kingdom all who cause others to sin and all evildoers. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the Kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears ought to hear.”
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How are you living your life today? Are you living it in accord with what Jesus wants you to live it?

 Many of us live life as if there is no tomorrow, we live life to enjoy whatever this world could offer us, including sin. But life lived for this world alone is not the real life; there is something more profound than the life that we enjoy in this fleeting world. 
The profound life is a life lived in the company of Jesus. But how could we discover the movement of Jesus in our lives? There are so many ways to discern this movement of Jesus in our lives.

For example you will discover that Jesus wants to have a relationship with you through a relative or a good friend. Through a written commentary that you just read out of nowhere and this written commentary made you think about how you are living your life today.

The good friend and the written commentary that you’ve read are part of the many seeds that Jesus sows in your heart. And Jesus expects nothing less from you than to listen to Him because Jesus always wants nothing but the best for you.

At the end of the gospel Jesus speaks about harvest time or judgment day. When would this be? This will be at the end of our lives, when we die to be more specific. We will be judged according to what we’ve done in this world. If we listened to Jesus we will have a place in His kingdom.

How are you living your life today? - Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Reflection for July 27, Monday, Seventeenth Week in Ordinary Time: Matthew 13:31-35

Gospel: Matthew 13:31-35
Jesus proposed a parable to the crowds. “The Kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that a person took and sowed in a field. It is the smallest of all the seeds, yet when full-grown it is the largest of plants. It becomes a large bush, and the birds of the sky come and dwell in its branches.”

He spoke to them another parable. “The Kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed with three measures of wheat flour until the whole batch was leavened.” All these things Jesus spoke to the crowds in parables. He spoke to them only in parables, to fulfill what had been said through the prophet:

I will open my mouth in parables, I will announce what has lain hidden from the foundation of the world. illustrate the same point: the amazing contrast between the small beginnings of the kingdom and its marvelous expansion.
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How does the kingdom of God starts in your heart? It starts small, then if you nurture it with prayers, by reading the bible and your faithful presence at Holy Mass. It slowly grows little by little until it fully blooms so that it can bless others and in the process you become a blessing to your brethren.  

But not everyone has this kind of experience. To many of us the kingdom begins small also yet it does not grow it instead dies. Why? Because we don’t exert an effort to nurture it, we don’t ask Jesus to bless our faith so that it could grow.

The mustard seed parable in our gospel is an allusion of Jesus’ desire to help us grow in faith. This seed of faith that He initially gives us during our baptism. And as we grow Jesus also desires that we also grow in faith so that others can learn from us.

How’s the seed of faith that Jesus sowed in your heart during your baptism? Did you allow it to grow by nurturing it and by asking Jesus to help you grow in faith? If it grew, has anyone been blessed by it already? – Marino J. Dasmarinas    

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Reflection for Sunday July 26, Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time; John 6:1-15

Gospel: John 6:1-15
Jesus went across the Sea of Galilee. A large crowd followed him because they saw the signs he was performing on the sick. Jesus went up on the mountain, and there he sat down with his disciples. The Jewish feast of Passover was near. When Jesus raised his eyes and saw that a large crowd was coming to him, he said to Philip, “Where can we buy enough food for them to eat?” He said this to test him, because he himself knew what he was going to do. Philip answered him, “Two hundred days’ wages worth of food would not be enough for each of them to have a little.” One of his disciples, Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, said to him, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish; but what good are these for so many?” Jesus said, “Have the people recline.” Now there was a great deal of grass in that place. So the men reclined, about five thousand in number. Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed them to those who were reclining, and also as much of the fish as they wanted. When they had their fill, he said to his disciples, “Gather the fragments left over, so that nothing will be wasted.” So they collected them, and filled twelve wicker baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves that had been more than they could eat. When the people saw the sign he had done, they said, “This is truly the Prophet, the one who is to come into the world.” Since Jesus knew that they were going to come and carry him off to make him king, he withdrew again to the mountain alone.
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There’s a story of a married couple who always find it hard to sustain their family's basic financial needs. A relative advised them to always be present in the Holy Mass celebration in their village’s chapel. The married couple asked their relative, why is there a need for us to always be present during Holy Mass? Their relative told them that they need to be present because this is where they meet, interact and be one with the Bread of Life which is Jesus Himself.

The big crowd in the gospel was running after Jesus, primarily because of His miracles, healings and life changing sermons. The crowd was more than five thousand and Jesus was naturally  concerned for their welfare. He therefore wanted to feed them but there was no enough bread and fish. So what Jesus did was he asked for whatever bread and fish that they have.

Upon getting hold of the bread and fish, He looked-up in thanksgiving to God. Thereafter Jesus gave the bread and fish to the crowd and He was able to fed them all. They also had plenty to spare, twelve wicker baskets and some fragments. It was not only the crowd’s physical hunger that was satisfied by Jesus, He also satisfied their spiritual thirst. 

When you attend Holy Mass, you are also feed by Jesus with the same bread which He gave the crowd. It happens when you partake of His Body and Blood during Holy Communion. During Holy Communion you are also nourished physically and spiritually by  the Bread of Life, Jesus Himself!

This is what occurs when you attend Holy Mass. You’re always being nourished by Jesus Himself, the same Jesus that fed the crowd who were following Him in the gospel.

when you are already standing in line for Holy Communion. Pray with your mind and heart and humbly ask Jesus to satisfy your spiritual hunger. Ask Jesus to increase your faith, pray also for contentment and peace in your life. He surely will give-in to your prayer.

Will you go to Holy Mass this Sunday so that you could partake of the Bread of Life? – Marino J. Dasmarinas