Quotations:

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

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

My Reflection for Wednesday January 1, Solemnity of Mary, the Holy Mother of God; Luke 2:16-21

http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/010114.cfm
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Gospel: Luke 2:16-21
The shepherds went in haste to Bethlehem and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known the message that had been told them about this child. All who heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds. And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart. Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, just as it had been told to them. When eight days were completed for his circumcision, he was named Jesus, the name given him by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.
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My Reflection:
On this first day of the year the church honor’s Mary as the Holy Mother of God. Perhaps this is so because the church wants to remind us of the important role of Mary in salvation history. In our gospel, the Blessed Mother quietly kept everything that was told them by the shepherd. No complaint whatsoever, she humbly submitted herself to the will of God for her.

The Blessed Mother quietly fulfilled her role as the Holy Mother of Jesus. She did not complain, she simply submitted herself to God’s will for her. She taught Jesus everything that He needs to know about life. And she also stayed with Jesus until the very end of His life. In return, Jesus greatly recognized her humble submission to the will of God by asking John the apostle to take care of His mother ( John 19:27).

All of us have our own mothers, I am very sure that we are all aware of the great sacrifices that they did for us. Like the Blessed Mother, they never complained they instead quietly assumed their motherly roles. For that was what God wanted them to become but how are we treating them right now that they are in twilight of their years? Are we giving them the best comfort and care that they could ever have?

Now that we are of age and we now can stand and survive on our own. Let us give our mothers the best that we could ever give them. Let us express to them our love and gratitude for all of the things that they’ve done for us. And if there will come a time that they commit mistakes caused by their advancing age let us remain patient and gentle with them. The good Lord will bless us abundantly this 2014 if we will take good care of our mothers.       
     
How are you taking care of your mother? - Marino J. Dasmarinas1

Happy New Year!


Happy New Year!



Tuesday, December 24, 2013

My Reflection for Tuesday December 24, Fourth Week of Advent; Luke 1:67-79

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Gospel: Luke 1:67-79
Zechariah his father, filled with the Holy Spirit, prophesied, saying:

“Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; for he has come to his people and set them free. He has raised up for us a mighty Savior, born of the house of his servant David. Through his prophets he promised of old that he would save us from our enemies, from the hands of all who hate us. He promised to show mercy to our fathers and to remember his holy covenant. This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham: to set us free from the hand of our enemies, free to worship him without fear, holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life. You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High, for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way, to give his people knowledge of salvation by the forgiveness of their sins. In the tender compassion of our God the dawn from on high shall break upon us, to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, and to guide our feet into the way of peace.”
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My Reflection:
Are we cognizant of the many blessings that God has bestowed upon us? For example the blessing of new life every morning: do we remember to thank God for this new life? The food on the table; do we say a prayer of thanks before we eat?  Or we are already used of getting-up in the morning, already used of the food on the table that it becomes ordinary already. So we immediately hop-in with our busy schedules thus we forget God.

Let us be mindful that the evil one through this world is slowly swaying us away from God thru its various enticements. It keeps us busy until such time that God becomes a simple unknown figure in our minds. Thus we sin without fear of the consequences for the reason that God is not part of our lives anymore. Zechariah was well aware of the many blessings that God has showered him and his family that’s why he praised Him.

In good times and in bad he never walked away from God he remained faithful to Him.   



Saturday, December 21, 2013

My Reflection for December 22, Fourth Sunday of Advent; Matthew 1:18-24

http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/122213.cfm
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Gospel: Matthew 1:18-24
This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found with child through the Holy Spirit. Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly. Such was his intention when, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home.

For it is through the Holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her. She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel, which means “God is with us.” When Joseph awoke, he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took his wife into his home.
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My Reflection:
Sin separate us from the love of God but this sin is temporary. For as long as we humbly obey the command of God to ask for forgiveness from Him through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. So the secret for us to reconcile with God and to remain always in His love is to humbly obey His commands.

Humility and obedience were the virtues that embodied Saint Joseph. For he humbly obeyed the angel’s command to take the Blessed Mother into his home even if she was already pregnant courtesy of the Holy Spirit. By his humility and obedience he spared the Blessed Mother from condemnation and severe punishment.

Humility and obedience are virtues that will save us from many troubles if we embody it also. Just imagine if every couple would be obedient and humble to each other. And just imagine also if every couple would be humble and obedient before God. There would be no problematic marriages and there would be no separation.

The Emmanuel which means God is with us will indeed always be with us. If only we will learn to embrace humility and obedience. Let us therefore humbly ask Jesus to gift us with these two very important virtues this Christmas. …        

Friday, December 20, 2013

My Reflection for Saturday December 21, Third Week of Advent; Luke 1:39-45

http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/122113.cfm
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Gospel: Luke 1:39-45
Mary set out in those days and traveled to the hill country in haste to a town of Judah, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the infant leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit, cried out in a loud voice and said, “Most blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. And how does this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy.  Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.”
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My Reflection:
Aside from the birth of our savior, one of the many beautiful and relevant messages of Christmas is self-emptying of ourselves. To look less on our personal needs and focus it to the needs of those who are materially and spiritually poor.

Considering that she was also pregnant at that time. The Blessed Mother did not focus on her own needs and safety. She looked outside of herself to make a difference in the life of someone else: That is her cousin Elizabeth. This is what we must always emulate every Christmas time even everyday, to empty and make ourselves available for others.

When we were children the usual focus of our Christmas celebrations and expectations were for ourselves. That's why during christmas eve we put socks in our houses in anticipation of the gifts that Santa Clause would give us. Then as we mature with time we slowly capture the true essence of Christmas.  That  Christmas is not about gifts and certainly not about ourselves.

Christmas is actually the gift of life of Christ Jesus, the self-emptying of God’s only begotten son for our sake. Therefore, let us focus our Christmas on making others happy, let us remember those who are poor. Those who were ravaged by calamities like typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan. Let us also remember our relatives whom we’ve not been in touch for so long especially the poor ones and let us make a positive difference in their lives this Christmas.     

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

My Reflection for Wednesday December 18, Third Week of Advent; Matthew I:18-25

http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/121813.cfm
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Gospel: Matthew I:18-25
This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about. When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found with child through the Holy Spirit. Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man, yet unwilling to expose her to shame, decided to divorce her quietly. Such was his intention when, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home.

For it is through the Holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her. She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: Behold, the virgin shall be with child and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel, which means “God is with us.” When Joseph awoke, he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took his wife into his home. He had no relations with her until she bore a son, and he named him Jesus.
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My Reflection:
Upon learning that Mary was already pregnant Joseph decided to quietly divorce her. But an Angel of the Lord appeared through his dream. And intervened and told him not to divorce Mary for the reason that the child that she was carrying was conceived by the Holy Spirit. After waking up Joseph obeyed what the angel told him. He stayed with Mary, He protected her and saw to it that she will receive the best love and care that she could ever have.

Such is Saint Joseph, righteous, humble, docile and obedient to the will of the Lord. In this time wherein the Sacrament of Marriage is not given much worth anymore. And is treated as a simple paper contract we have Saint Joseph reminding us about the sacredness of the Sacrament of Marriage. We have Saint Joseph reminding us that Marriage is for men and women only. We have Saint Joseph reminding us that Marriage is not only a paper contract. It is in fact a forever covenant between the couple and Jesus.

Let us examine ourselves on how we put value on the Sacrament of Marriage. And let us follow the example of Saint Joseph on how he deeply loved the Blessed Mother. And on how he obeyed the will of God for him. … 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

My Reflection for December 17, Tuesday of the Third Week of Advent; Matthew 1:1-17

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Gospel: Matthew 1:1-17
The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.

Abraham became the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers. Judah became the father of Perez and Zerah,  whose mother was Tamar. Perez became the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, Ram the father of Amminadab. Amminadab became the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon, Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab. Boaz became the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth. Obed became the father of Jesse, Jesse the father of David the king.

David became the father of Solomon, whose mother had been the wife of Uriah. Solomon became the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asaph. Asaph became the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, Joram the father of Uzziah. Uzziah became the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah. Hezekiah became the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amos, Amos the father of Josiah. Josiah became the father of Jechoniah and his brothers at the time of the Babylonian exile.

After the Babylonian exile, Jechoniah became the father of Shealtiel, Shealtiel the father of  Zerubbabel, Zerubbabel the father of Abiud. Abiud became the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor, Azor the father of Zadok. Zadok became the father of Achim, Achim the father of Eliud, Eliud the father of Eleazar. Eleazar became the father of Matthan, Matthan the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Of her was born Jesus who is called the Christ. Thus the total number of generations from Abraham to David is fourteen generations; from David to the Babylonian exile, fourteen generations; from the Babylonian exile to the Christ, fourteen generations.
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My Reflection:
Our gospel for today traces the genealogy of Jesus. From Abraham to David to Solomon just to name a few. As we look at the blood lines of Jesus we will find out that some of them are sinners. But God in His infinite wisdom choose them to become the ancestors of Jesus. We may think that this is bizarre or strange, some of the members of Jesus family tree are sinners?   Isn’t this inappropriate for the Son of God to originate from their bloodlines? But this is how God works, very mysterious and very unexpected.

All of us are sinners also, let us not think that because of our being sinful we are already beyond redemption and beyond the reach of the love of God. Everything is possible with our God, if we judge others or if we think of ourselves as incorrigible sinners. God doesn’t think that way, God can change a sinners to become a saint. God can bestow unexpected blessings to us sinners.

If others have already judged us as sinners and beyond redemption already, remember that God will never judge us. And who knows, He might just surprise us with unexpected blessing/s. 

Sunday, December 8, 2013

My Reflection for December 8, Second Sunday of Advent; Matthew 3:1-12

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Gospel: Matthew 3:1-12
John the Baptist appeared, preaching in the desert of Judea and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” It was of him that the prophet Isaiah had spoken when he said: A voice of one crying out in the desert, Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths.  John wore clothing made of camel’s hair and had a leather belt around his waist. His food was locusts and wild honey. At that time Jerusalem, all Judea, and the whole region around the Jordan were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the Jordan River as they acknowledged their sins.

When he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Produce good fruit as evidence of your repentance. And do not presume to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I tell you, God can raise up children to Abraham from these stones. Even now the ax lies at the root of the trees. Therefore every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. I am baptizing you with water, for repentance, but the one who is coming after me is mightier than I. I am not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing fan is in his hand. He will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into his barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”
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My Reflection:
A group of siblings had a bitter dispute about inheritance from their parents. Since there was no last will and testament everyone was trying to outdo each other as to who would get the biggest chunk of wealth. Since there was no settlement it led to filling of cases in court. So the once happy siblings were now angry with each other.

The youngest amongst them had the wisdom to think about the unity of their family. So he humbly told his sibling, let us not quarrel over money and property. He further said that money come and go but family relationship once it’s broken is very hard to build again. Therefore the bitter dispute over money and property was healed by the family’s desire to be unified once again.

In our first reading for today the prophet Isaiah talks about the eventual reign of God. Where there is harmony and no disputes, everyone could peacefully co-exist with each other. The same is true with our second reading from Saint Pau’s letter to the Romans. It calls for unity and harmony with one another and their unifying factor is no other than God. They forget their own selves (Ego, pride and high regard for ones self) and allow the power of God through Jesus to unify them.     

In our gospel John the Baptist is preaching repentance for the kingdom of God is at hand. He specifically addressed this to the Pharisees and Sadducees. John the Baptist wanted them to produce concrete evidence of their repentance by their good deeds. This call to repentance of John is also addressed to us all to make us worthy for the forthcoming birth of Jesus.

Many families and siblings of today are not in harmony with one another there’s no sign of unity whatsoever. This is so for the reason that there is no visible sign of repentance in their hearts. Some are quarrelling over properties, some do not have peace in their family for the reason that they don’t want to admit their mistakes.

This second Sunday of advent let us ponder on this message of unity of our first and second readings. Let us also take courage to repent from all of our sinfulness as what John the Baptist tells us in our gospel.      

This is perhaps the best gift that we could give our family and Jesus this Christmas. … 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

My Reflection for Wednesday December 4, the First Week of Advent, Matthew 15:29-37

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Gospel: Matthew 15:29-37  
At that time: Jesus walked by the Sea of Galilee, went up on the mountain, and sat down there. Great crowds came to him, having with them the lame, the blind, the deformed, the mute, and many others. They placed them at his feet, and he cured them. The crowds were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the deformed made whole, the lame walking, and the blind able to see, and they glorified the God of Israel.

Jesus summoned his disciples and said, “My heart is moved with pity for the crowd, for they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat. I do not want to send them away hungry, for fear they may collapse on the way.” The disciples said to him, “Where could we ever get enough bread in this deserted place to satisfy such a crowd?” Jesus said to them, “How many loaves do you have?” “Seven,” they replied, “and a few fish.” He ordered the crowd to sit down on the ground. Then he took the seven loaves and the fish, gave thanks, broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds. They all ate and were satisfied. They picked up the fragments left over–seven baskets full.
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My Reflection:
What do we do when we are sick? Of course we go to the doctor, but have we thought of going to Jesus first? To go to Him in deep prayer to ask Him to cure us with His mighty healing power. Many of us perhaps have forgotten already that Jesus is the greatest healer who ever walked on this earth. That’s why we sometimes forget to go to Him first in deep prayer before we go to our doctors. 

I know of someone who was sick, yes she went to her doctor for her healing. Whenever I go to the Blessed Sacrament I always see her there in deep prayer. Communing with Jesus asking Jesus to heal her, I now see her cured going about with her normal life.

In our gospel, great crowds went to Jesus, with them were the lame, the blind, the deformed, the mute, and many more sick people. They placed them at his feet, and he cured them. The crowds were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the deformed made whole, the lame walking, and the blind able to see, and they glorified the God of Israel.

Whenever we are sick (Whatever it may be and no matter how grave it may be) let us always remember to go to Jesus first. And let us deeply pray to Him to heal us.

Do you always pray to Jesus?             

Saturday, November 30, 2013

My Reflection for December 1, First Sunday of Advent, Matthew 24:37-44

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Gospel: Matthew 24:37-44
Jesus said to his disciples: “As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. In those days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day that Noah entered the ark. They did not know until the flood came and carried them all away. So will it be also at the coming of the Son of Man. Two men will be out in the field; one will be taken, and one will be left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken, and one will be left. Therefore, stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come. Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour of night when the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and not let his house be broken into. So too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.”
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My Reflection:
During the time of Noah Yahweh saw the wickedness of men that’s why He decided to destroy them. Noah was a blameless and righteous man. And because of his righteousness he and a handful of his relatives and a few animals were saved by Yahweh.

From the time of Noah let as move fast forward to our present time. Is there still wickedness and evil in our environment today? The answer is a resounding yes!  Evil and wickedness is still prevalent today, it’s actually everywhere. And whether we admit it or not we continue also to harbor ill will and other unhealthy intentions in our hearts.

On this first Sunday of advent the church is calling for us to leave behind our sinful lives. This is best exemplified with this call of Saint Paul to the Romans, he tells us. “Let us then throw off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light; let us conduct ourselves properly as in the day, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in promiscuity and lust, not in rivalry and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the desires of the flesh. (Romans 13:12-14 ).

This call of renewal is also echoed by the prophet Isaiah in our first reading. He called for all people to go to the mountain of the Lord and walk with the light of the Lord (Isaiah 2:3 ).  

On this first Sunday of Advent we are also reminded about the uncertainty of life. That it may end anytime that’s why we must seriously hear God’s message for us. Let us repent and walk away from our sins, let us embrace goodness and humility.

We can best do this if we will find time to humbly submit ourselves to the Sacrament of Reconciliation/Confession.  

Saturday, November 23, 2013

My Reflection for November 24, Solemnity of Christ the King, Luke 23:35-43


http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/112413.cfm
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My Reflection:
Who among us would want to follow the kingship of Jesus?  He is an image of human weakness, He hangs on the cross blooded ang dying. The rulers sneered at Him even the soldiers taunted Him. Jesus on the cross was seemingly helpless and it seems that God has forsaken Him already.

If we were present during that time of His crucifixion we would not dare also touch Him with a ten foot pole. We would have also silently walked away like the others who were disappointed with Jesus show of human weakness.

What if Jesus projected the image of king David in our first reading (warrior, conqueror and leader) of course everyone would have flocked to His side. But Jesus did not show any warrior like demeanor, instead He showed a defeated behavior that His followers did not want to see from Him. That’s why in His most trying times everyone who followed Him eventually deserted Him.

 But during His moment of human weakness someone recognized His kingship. It was the criminal hanging on the cross beside Him. What made the criminal recognize His power and kingship? That he even asked Jesus to remember him when He is in His kingdom. It was the criminal’s humility and unwavering faith in Jesus. We may ask, is it possible for a criminal to be humble and is it possible for a criminal to have an unwavering faith in Jesus? Yes it is very possible!

How could this gospel help us to have a firmer grasp of the kingship of Jesus? We must always humble ourselves before Him. For example, we always go to Mass and we humbly submit ourselves to the Sacrament of Reconciliation as often as possible. We must not forget also to always ask Jesus to increase our faith.

But sad to say, many of us are situational followers of Jesus only. …   

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

My Reflection for Saturday November 23, Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time; Luke 20:27-40

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My Reflection:
What will happen to us after we die? Would we still know each others name if we see each other in heaven? Would we still feel the same if we see each other in heaven? We don’t know because we haven’t died yet.

But one thing is sure there will come a time that we will have a physical death. Would it be the end? No, we who follow Jesus believe that our physical death is only the beginning of eternal life with Jesus in heaven.

The Sadducees do not believe in the resurrection. That’s why they asked Jesus the question about the seven brothers who married the same woman. So they asked Jesus, to whom will she belong during resurrection?

Jesus gave them this meaningful answer, “The children of this age marry and remarry; but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage (Luke 20:34-35).

Many of us (Although in a different manner) have the same concern with the Sadducees, what will happen to you and me after we die. Are we not stretching our minds too far by having this thought? Instead of being concerned with the after life or the resurrection.

Why don’t we focus our attention to our present life? Do we live it according to the will of Jesus for us? If we live our present life according to the will of Jesus, we need not worry about the after life or resurrection. ...

Saturday, November 9, 2013

My Reflection for November 10, Thirty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Luke 20:27-38

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My Reflection:
It’s very hard to think that there is no resurrection like what the Sadducees believed. For example if there’s no afterlife what then is the purpose of our lives in this world? What then is the purpose of our worship and faith in an eternal God? What then is the reason why we do good?

We follow Christ and we try to live His teachings because we believe that by doing so. We will be with our eternal God after our earthly journey is over and done with already. To deny that there is no resurrection is like to deny that there is no heaven and hell in the after life.

But we know that there is heaven and hell and this heaven and hell is not an exclusive domain of the after life. For example, if we live our lives in this world contrary to the teachings of God. We will experience hell already even while we are still alive. On the other hand if we live our lives according to the teachings of God we will experience heaven even if we are still here in this world.

There is resurrection and there is afterlife because this is what God through the Holy Spirit has taught the church to teach us. We must believe this because we are believers in an infinite God who is not bound by time and space. A God who loves us so much that He gave His only begotten Son for us.

Come to think of it, if there is no resurrection there is also no purpose in our lives. But there is resurrection that’s why we live a purpose driven life in this world. 

What is your purpose in life?

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

My Reflection for Wednesday November 6, Thirty-first Week in Ordinary Time, Luke 14:25-33

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My Reflection:
If you are a member of a charismatic group perhaps you’ve already watched a life testimony of your fellow member. Majority of these testimonies deals with the many blessings that they’ve received from the good Lord. We rarely hear testimony about their sufferings and crosses and how Jesus helped them carry it.

In our gospel for today, Jesus speaks to us about the suffering and crosses that is incorporated with our true discipleship. Jesus tells us: “Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.” What do these profound words of Jesus mean to you and me?

As we truly follow Jesus we must also open ourselves with the carrying of our own cross and enduring also our suffering. Because it is only through these two that we could have that true feeling of companionship with Jesus. If we say, that life is all bed of roses since we’ve followed Jesus. Then, we have not really felt the true companionship of Jesus in our lives.

True discipleship for Christ Jesus is felt only when we suffer for His sake, when we are willing to carry our cross for His sake. And when we are willing to give even our very lives so that others may live and have that encounter with Jesus. This is the real essence of authentic discipleship for Jesus.

In the silence of our hearts let us examine our own discipleship for Christ Jesus. Have we already suffered for Him? Have we already carried our cross for Him?  

Sunday, November 3, 2013

My Reflection for Monday November 4, Saint Charles Borromeo, Bishop; Luke 14:12-14

 Gospel: Luke 14:12-14
On a sabbath Jesus went to dine at the home of one of the leading Pharisees. He said to the host who invited him, “When you hold a lunch or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or sisters or your relatives or your wealthy neighbors, in case they may invite you back and you have repayment. Rather, when you hold a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind; blessed indeed will you be because of their inability to repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”
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My Reflection:
The leading Pharisee who invited Jesus obviously was well known and powerful. Thus we could surmise that his circle of friends was naturally well known and powerful also. And Jesus knew about this that’s why Jesus gave the Pharisee something to think about or a food for thought as far as inviting guest is concerned.

Jesus said to him; when you have a lunch or a dinner. Do not invite your friends or your brothers or sisters or your relatives or your wealthy neighbors. Rather, when you hold a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind. Wow! This is very hard to do for the Pharisee and for us as well!

How could we invite them when they are not inside our circle of friends? How could we invite them when most of them live in dirty environment? How could we invite them when they are not externally presentable and there are many more reasons not to invite them.

If we don’t invite them we are judging them already based on what we see about them. And most of the time what we see on them is unpleasant and not worthy for our very judgmental eyes. But we don’t see the heart of the poor, the lame, the cripple, the lame and the blind. If only we could see what’s in their hearts, it’s none other than Jesus, Jesus dwells in their hearts.

Let us seriously take note of these teachings of Jesus because when we invite them we are actually inviting Jesus. …     

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

My Reflection for Wednesday October 30, Thirtieth Week in Ordinary Time, Luke 13:22-30

Gospel: Luke 13:22-30
Jesus passed through towns and villages, teaching as he went and making his way to Jerusalem.Someone asked him, Lord, will only a few people be saved? He answered them, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I tell you, will attempt to enter but will not be strong enough. After the master of the house has arisen and locked the door, then will you stand outside knocking and saying, ‘Lord, open the door for us. He will say to you in reply ‘I do not know where you are from.’ And you will say, ‘We ate and drank in your company and you taught in our streets.’ Then he will say to you, ‘I do not know where you are from. Depart from me, all you evildoers!

And there will be wailing and grinding of teeth when you see Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and all the prophets in the Kingdom of God and you yourselves cast out. And people will come from the east and the west and from the north and the south and will recline at table in the Kingdom of God. For behold, some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.
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My Reflection:
What is the narrow gate that Jesus is telling us to enter before it’s too late? The narrow gate is the pathway that will lead us to Jesus. Jesus is always calling us to renew our lives and follow Him through that narrow gate.

We all know that there’s no certainty in this world. What we own could be taken from us anytime of the day, even our lives could abruptly end at any moment. But before all these happens, Jesus wants us to live our lives worthy in His eyes so that if it ends we can pass thru that narrow door and be permanently with Him in heaven.

What are we waiting for now? Let us renew our lives and let us walk away from our sinfulness for this is what Jesus wants us to do. This will not be easy to do for we already got used with the temptations and sins of this world. But where did these many worldly things has led us so far? It led us to commit many sinful things and it slowly leads us away from Jesus. Be wary therefore if you’re losing your connection with Jesus.

Reconnect and follow Him through the narrow gate now. … 

Sunday, October 27, 2013

My Reflection for Monday October 28, Feast of Saints Simon and Jude, Apostles, Luke 6:12-16

Gospel: Luke 6:12-16
Jesus went up to the mountain to pray, and he spent the night in prayer to God. When day came, he called his disciples to himself, and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles: Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called a Zealot, and Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.
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My Reflection:
Before making the crucial decision to appoint the twelve apostles Jesus prayed first for guidance from God. Perhaps Jesus also asked the guidance of the Holy Spirit, this is how it must always be for us also. Whenever we will make a crucial decision or any decision in our lives we must pray first and ask guidance from God.

After praying Jesus went on to choose the twelve apostles. They were ordinary people like us, some were fishermen who became fishers of men and they were sinners like us. What does this gospel tells us? It tells us that everyone of us could be a partner of Jesus in His desire to evangelize the whole world. 

During this time of internet, evangelization is not anymore limited to actual or physical evangelization. We can evangelize using the cyberspace:  write about Jesus, post on your facebook anything about Jesus and your Christian faith. 

 If you can’t be a physical missionary be a cyber missionary. The avenues for effective evangelization in cyberspace is unlimited. Let us therefore take advantage of the technology that is available in the palms of our hands.

Be not afraid to respond to this call of Jesus, He will empower you and He will be there for you. …

Saturday, October 26, 2013

My Reflection for Saturday October 26, Twenty-ninth Week in Ordinary Time, Luke 13:1-9

Gospel: Luke 13:1-9
Some people told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with the blood of their sacrifices. He said to them in reply, “Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were greater sinners than all other Galileans? By no means! But I tell you, if you do not repent, you will all perish as they did! Or those eighteen people who were killed when the tower at Siloam fell on them— do you think they were more guilty than everyone else who lived in Jerusalem? By no means! But I tell you, if you do not repent you will all perish as they did!

And he told them this parable: “There once was a person who had a fig tree planted in his orchard, and when he came in search of fruit on it but found none, he said to the gardener, ‘For three years now I have come in search of fruit on this fig tree but have found none. So cut it down. Why should it exhaust the soil? He said to him in reply, ‘Sir, leave it for this year also and I shall cultivate the ground around it and fertilize it; it may bear fruit in the future. If not you can cut it down.
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My Reflection:
Repentance is something that we all need to do for we are all sinners. But why is it that many of us are not willing to obey this call of Jesus? The reason behind is we don’t have the virtue of humility, this is the sole reason why we refuse God’s call for us to repent. Otherwise we would have easily followed this call of Jesus.

The moment we repent a huge burden would immediately be removed from our hearts. We will feel light and peaceful and our seamless connection with Jesus will immediately be restored. But we refuse to repent we instead prefer to be burdened by sin. This is the paradox of our times we prefer to embrace the devil rather than God.  

Jesus in our gospel for today is calling for a wholesale repentance not selective repentance but wholesale repentance. This simply means that we would be willing to walk away from any sinful actions and thoughts. We completely walk away from any actions that would only make us sin.

But if we will not repent now, when will we repent? Should we wait for a critical point in our lives to happen before we humbly embrace Jesus call of repentance?

Friday, October 18, 2013

My Reflection for Saturday October 19, Twenty eight week in ordinary time, Luke 12:8-12

Gospel: Luke 12:8-12
Jesus said to his disciples: “I tell you everyone who acknowledges me before others the Son of Man will acknowledge before the angels of God. But whoever denies me before others will be denied before the angels of God.

“Everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. When they take you before synagogues and before rulers and authorities, do not worry about how or what your defense will be or about what you are to say. For the Holy Spirit will teach you at that moment what you should say.
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My Reflection:
The Holy Spirit is the initiator of our faith, before we know God the father and Jesus the Son it was first the Holy Spirit that was first introduced to us through our Baptism and Confirmation. This is how important the Holy Spirit to all of us. Perhaps this is the reason why Jesus said, the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.

But it’s also ironic that among the three persons in one God it’s the Holy Spirit that is least known. Then, how could we have that special awareness of the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives? And how could we develop that deeper intimacy with the Holy Spirit? How could we unleash its presence within us?

It’s through prayers that we could have intimacy and awareness of it’s presence in our lives. If we develop a very prayerful life it’s second nature for us to be aware of the presence of the Holy Spirit. It would not introduce itself to us for the simple reason that it has been with us ever since our Baptism.

Be prayerful therefore and always invite God the Holy Spirit to be an active presence in your life. He will surely not fail you if you ask with faith. …  

My Reflection for Friday October 18, Feast of Saint Luke, Evangelist, Luke 10:1-9

Gospel: Luke 10:1-9
The Lord Jesus appointed seventy-two disciples whom he sent ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit. He said to them, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.

Go on your way; behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves. Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals; and greet no one along the way. Into whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this household. If a peaceful person lives there, your peace will rest on him; but if not, it will return to you.

Stay in the same house and eat and drink what is offered to you for the laborer deserves payment. Do not move about from one house to another. Whatever town you enter and they welcome you, eat what is set before you cure the sick in it and say to them ‘The Kingdom of God is at hand for you.
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My Reflection:
We may wonder, why Jesus sent the seventy-two disciples in pairs? Jesus could have sent them one by one so that they could cover more ground thus the spread of His gospel would be much faster. But Jesus chose them to go in pairs.

In pairs for the reason that He wanted them to help each other in doing their mission for Him.   Jesus had it already in His mind that to do His mission is realistically not that easy. So He deemed it right and wise to send them in pairs for them to help each other as they face the many challenges of their mission.

Why do you exist in this world? Do you exist for yourself only? Of course not! You and I exist in this world for a reason. And that reason is to help our fellowmen; we need to extend to them the good news about Jesus. We need to feed the hungry; we need to clothe those who do not have clothes. And we need to give hope to those who are losing hope.  

This is our vocation as followers and missioners for Christ Jesus. … 

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

As we see now the devastation brought about by the 7.2 quake which hit Bohol, Cebu and nearby towns yesterday October 15, is beyond human comprehension. Let us continue to include them in our PRAYERS AND MASS INTENTIONS. Let us also extend whatever HELP we can give them.

As we see now the devastation brought about by the 7.2 quake which hit Bohol, Cebu and nearby towns yesterday October 15, is beyond human comprehension. Let us continue to include them in our PRAYERS AND MASS INTENTIONS. Let us also extend whatever HELP we can give them.

Monday, October 14, 2013

My Reflection for Wednesday October 16, Twenty-eighth Week in Ordinary Time, Luke 11:42-46

Gospel: Luke 11:42-46
“Woe to you Pharisees! You pay tithes of mint and of rue and of every garden herb, but you pay no attention to judgment and to love for God. These you should have done, without overlooking the others. Woe to you Pharisees! You love the seat of honor in synagogues and greetings in marketplaces. Woe to you! You are like unseen graves over which people unknowingly walk.”

Then one of the scholars of the law said to him in reply, “Teacher, by saying this you are insulting us too. And he said, “Woe also to you scholars of the law! You impose on people burdens hard to carry, but you yourselves do not lift one finger to touch them.
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My Reflection:
Seldom do we see Jesus angry and this gospel episode is one of the rare ones. What made Jesus angry? He was angry with the Pharisees, (the learned ruling class during that time) for the reason that they imposed so much religious requirements to their people. But unfortunately they were only good at imposing these requirements. They were not actually willing to live what they wanted their people to do.

Some if not many of us are like the Pharisees. We love to give orders: do this and to that but it ends there. We don’t lift a finger to do it ourselves, we want others to do things for us while we watch and relax. How could we become good examples or good leaders if we are not willing to walk our talk? How could we make Jesus happy if we are not willing to live what we learn from Him?

Effective faith in Jesus is faith that is alive and kicking and faith that is leading and working. This is the most effective faith, let us therefore live our faith. Not because we want others to see us living it. We live our faith because this is our moral obligation as true followers of Jesus. …