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

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Ang aking repleksyon para sa Marso 31, Linggo ng Pagkabuhay: Juan 20:1-9

Ang Aking Repleksyon:
May isang lalaking katoliko na mahal na mahal  ang kanyang pananampalataya. Tuwing lingo ng pagkabuhay ay naglalagay siya ng napaka laking tarpaulin sa harap ng kanyang bahay na may naka guhit na imahe ni Jesus na  muling nabuhay na papalabas sa kanyang pinag himlayan. Pero siya ay hindi kinagigiliwan ng kanyang mga kapatid at kapitbahay dahil siya ay madamot, makasarili at mapag mataas.

Marami sa atin ang katulad ng lalaki na lubhang nag papahalaga sa ating pananampalataya kay Hesus na muling nabuhay. Pero ito ay hangang sa pag papahalaga lang at kulang na kulang naman sa pag sasabuhay.

Ano ba ang gusto ni Hesus na gawin natin simula ngayong lingo ng pagkabuhay? Gusto ni Hesus na tayo ay maging tagasunod niya na nag sasabuhay ng kanyang pananampalataya. Hindi maganda na sabihin natin na tayo ay sumasampalataya kay Hesus na muling nabuhay pero manhid naman tayo sa mga pangangailagan ng ating kapwa na nag hihirap. Sadya natin silang pinabababayaan kahit na tayo ay may kakayahang tumulong sa kanila. Ano ang silbi ng ating pananampalataya kay Hesus na muling nabuhay kung tayo ay ganyan? 

Ang gusto ni Hesus ay tayo ay maging buhay na buhay niyang mga taga sunod na nag sasagawa ng ating pananampalataya sa kanya. Gusto niya ay tayo ang mag bubukas sa mga mata ng ating kapwa patungkol sa maraming mga katotohanan sa ating simbahan. Gusto niya ay tayo ang kanyang maging mga kamay na tutulong sa mga naghihirap. Gusto niya ay tayo ang kanyang maging tainga na makikinig ng taimtim sa mga pasakit at paghihirap ng ating mga kapwa.

Magiging makabuluhan lamang ang ating pananampalataya kay Hesus na muling nabuhay pag tayo ay handa na maging kanyang mga mata, kamay at tainga dito sa mundo.

Handa po ba tayo na maging mata, kamay at tainga ni Hesus?

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

My Reflection for March 29, Good Friday: John 18:1-19:42

My Reflection:
Why did Jesus die on the cross? It was in loving obedience to the will of the Father. It was also out of His immense love for us, Jesus willfully died on the cross so that we may live and have life.   

We ask ourselves this question: What have we done in return to give back and to gratefully acknowledge this self-emptying of Jesus on the cross? Have we lived and shared His teachings? Have we also willfully carried or helped carry the cross of others to lighten their burdens? Have we become another Christ for our fellowmen?

The cross is a sign of contradiction because it is a sign of sacrifice but at the same time it is also a sign of salvation and enlightenment. Let us not be afraid to carry our own cross even if it seems that we would be burdened by it. Let us not be afraid to lighten the cross of our fellowmen also because there will come a time that we will harvest something worthy from that cross.

As Jesus learned to love the cross for our sake, let us also learn to embrace and love our cross no matter how hard and difficult it may seem. For on that cross lies our salvation and redemption. …    



My Reflection for March 28, Holy Thursday: Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper John 13:1-15

My Reflection:
What would we do if we know that we are to have the Last Supper of our lives? We will be doing something for ourselves; perhaps we will isolate ourselves and pray with all seriousness before our God.

Jesus knew beforehand that He would be having His Last Supper but instead of doing something for himself. He washed the feet of the apostles; it was leadership by example personified. He did that act of humility for the reason that He wanted to strongly imprint into the minds of the apostles and to us also. That those who truly desire to follow Him must first learn to become humble and learn to serve and not to be served.

Many are not inclined to follow our faith or many are inclined to embrace other faiths because they don’t see the humility of Jesus in us. And who is to blame for this? No other than many of us because we fail to embrace Jesus template of humility.

This Holy Thursday let us reflect and ponder on these words of Jesus in the gospel: I have given you a model to follow, so that as I have done for you, you should also do (John 13:15).”  

My Reflections for March 27, Wednesday in Holy Week, Matthew 26:14-25

My Reflections:
Who was the man who opened his house for Jesus and his apostles? We don’t know, what we are certain about him is he was gracious and kind enough to offer his house to Jesus. There was no ulterior motive when he allowed them to use his house for their Passover remembrance.

Judas was with Jesus and his fellow apostles but he was not there to be in communion with them. He was with them because he was planning something sinister, none other than the betrayal of Jesus. 

On this Wednesday of Holy Week let us reflect on our motives when we give help. Do we do it with the purest of intentions? Or we give help because we expect something in return. How about when we help the church? Do we help because we really desire to help? Or we help because we want something in return from God.

Let us help without expecting anything in return… let us always desire the company of Jesus out of our great love and devotion to Him. …

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

My Reflections for March 24, Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord, Luke 23:1-49

My Reflections:
When Jesus was already on the cross only a handful stood by Him: His mother Mary, His apostle John and a few others. That is very understandable; for who would want to be identified with a badly punished defeated man hanging on the cross?

However, there was another man who suddenly had that enlightenment to follow Jesus, none other than one of the criminals on the cross beside Him. The enlightened criminal was in a hellish situation but he was unexpectedly brought into paradise by Jesus.

What was the key to the criminal’s sudden salvation? He humbly asked Jesus to remember him when He is already in His kingdom. This was the key to the criminal’s salvation. What does this gospel episode tells us? We who’ve been betraying Jesus through our countless sins have hope also. We too could possess that same paradise no matter how grave the sins that we have committed.     

As we are ushered into this Holy Week let us try to recall our sins. If we have not yet been through the Sacrament of Reconciliation let us humbly submit to this Healing Sacrament. Let us also not forget to follow the solemn church liturgical activities during this holiest of weeks.

Let us be ready with our palms to rejoice with Jesus as we celebrate His triumphant entry into Jerusalem. And be prepared also to join Him in His passion through the Way of the Cross. Let us be present in the Institution of the Eucharist and emulate the humility of Jesus as He washes the feet of the apostles during Holy Thursday. 

Let us not forget to venerate the Cross this Good Friday. Finally, let us be present in the Easter Vigil after sundown on Holy Saturday and fulfill our Sunday obligation during Easter Sunday.    

Our paradise with Jesus begins this Palm Sunday. …

Monday, March 18, 2013

My Reflections for March 19, Tuesday Solemnity of Saint Joseph, husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary: Mathew 1:16, 18-21, 24A

Gospel:
Jacob was the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Of her was born Jesus who is called the Christ.

Now 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.” 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 Reflections:
When Saint Joseph discovered that Mary was already pregnant he decided to quietly divorce the Blessed Mother. Why quietly divorce? Why not broadcast it to their whole community so that Mary will be embarrassed and severely punished by stoning to death.

Joseph decided to quietly divorce Mary because deep in his heart he already loved the Blessed Mother. Deep in his humble and righteous heart Joseph already loved the baby in the womb of Mary. That is why Joseph wanted to quietly divorce Mary so that Mary and the baby Jesus would avoid the punishment of death by stoning. But his plan did not push through for the simple reason that Joseph listened to the angel of the Lord. Who told him that the Blessed Mother conceived by the grace of the Holy Spirit.  

The love that Saint Joseph exercised towards the Blessed Mother and the baby Jesus must also be the love that we must always give to our family. We must at all times first take into consideration the welfare of our family more than our own selfish interest.

In his heart Saint Joseph was always quietly praying for guidance and enlightenment. This may be the reason why he never said a single word. He was always waiting for the voice of God to tell him what to do during that critical moment of his life. Humility, selfless love, obedience and prayerful silence these are the values of Saint Joseph.

Are we like Saint Joseph? Or do we have some of these values of Saint Joseph?

Sunday, March 17, 2013

My Reflections for March 18, Monday of the fifth Week of Lent: John 8:12-20

Gospel:
Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” So the Pharisees said to him, “You testify on your own behalf, so your testimony cannot be verified.” Jesus answered and said to them, “Even if I do testify on my own behalf, my testimony can be verified, because I know where I came from and where I am going. But you do not know where I come from or where I am going. You judge by appearances, but I do not judge anyone. And even if I should judge, my judgment is valid, because I am not alone, but it is I and the Father who sent me. Even in your law it is written that the testimony of two men can be verified. I testify on my behalf and so does the Father who sent me.” So they said to him, “Where is your father?” Jesus answered, “You know neither me nor my Father. If you knew me, you would know my Father also.” He spoke these words while teaching in the treasury in the temple area. But no one arrested him, because his hour had not yet come.
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My Reflections:
Jesus boldly proclaims to us that He is the light of the world. He further adds that whoever among us decides to follow Him will not anymore walk in darkness but will have the light of life. This declaration of Jesus is always true, always timely and always significant in our lives. If only we would care to listen we will discover that a worthy life in this world is a life that is centered on Jesus.  

Many of us are walking in darkness because we don’t have Jesus in our lives. We may have all the material wealth and earthly power but it amounts to nothing if we don’t have the light of Jesus in our lives.

What would it do us if we have all the earthly riches and influence yet we don’t have the light of Jesus in our lives? Instead of following the dictates of this world which only leads us to worldliness and emptiness let us follow the light of Jesus.

We will never regret it if we allow Jesus to illuminate our lives. …

Thursday, March 7, 2013

My Reflections for March 9, Saturday of the Third Week of Lent: Luke 18:9-14

Gospel:
Jesus addressed this parable to those who were convinced of their own righteousness and despised everyone else. “Two people went up to the temple area to pray; one was a Pharisee and the other was a tax collector. The Pharisee took up his position and spoke this prayer to himself, ‘O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of humanity —greedy, dishonest, adulterous — or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week, and I pay tithes on my whole income.’ But the tax collector stood off at a distance and would not even raise his eyes to heaven but beat his breast and prayed, ‘O God, be merciful to me a sinner.’ I tell you, the latter went home justified, not the former; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and the one who humbles himself will be exalted.”
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My Reflections:
There were two officemates who were promoted at the same time. One suddenly became proud of his newly found fame he left his friends for a new set of friends that befits his new status. The other one remained humble and remained in-touch with his old friends. Whom would we favor amongst these two? Of course we will favor the humble one.

The same is true with Jesus, He favors the humble as stated in the gospel. Those who do not change whatever fame and fortune they may possess. They remain grounded; they never allow their sudden fame and fortune to go into their heads. They are well aware that whatever they have now is a gift from God that they must not brag.   

Let us always be humble before the eyes of God and our fellowmen. … 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

My Reflections for March 8, Friday of the Third Week of Lent: Luke 12:28-34

Gospel:
One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him, “Which is the first of all the commandments?” Jesus replied, “The first is this: Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.” The scribe said to him, “Well said, teacher. You are right in saying, He is One and there is no other than he. And to love him with all your heart, with all your understanding, with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.” And when Jesus saw that he answered with understanding, he said to him, “You are not far from the Kingdom of God.” And no one dared to ask him any more questions.
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My Reflections:
A homeless man was basically alien to the word love of God and neighbor until someone pitied him. The good Samaritan helped the homeless man by means of teaching him how to love God and neighbor through his selfless actions.

Many are like the homeless man but only a few of us are like the Good Samaritan. We are averse to be in contact with the homeless and those who stray in the streets. Thus they don’t know how to love God and neighbor.

If only we would listen to Jesus two greatest commandments about love. …

Friday, March 1, 2013

My Reflections for March 4, Monday of the Third Week of Lent: Luke 4:24-30

Gospel:
Jesus said to the people in the synagogue at Nazareth: “Amen, I say to you, no prophet is accepted in his own native place. Indeed, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah when the sky was closed for three and a half years and a severe famine spread over the entire land. It was to none of these that Elijah was sent, but only to a widow in Zarephath in the land of Sidon. Again, there were many lepers in Israel during the time of Elisha the prophet; yet not one of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian.” When the people in the synagogue heard this, they were all filled with fury. They rose up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town had been built, to hurl him down headlong. But he passed through the midst of them and went away.
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My Reflections:
What is selective love? It is a kind of love that is only directed to those whom we want to give it. This is how we normally exercise our love. The love of God for us is not a selective kind of love; it is rather a love that doesn’t discriminate. Regardless of who we are and whatever sins that we have committed.

If we think that Jesus doesn’t love us anymore because of the gravity of our sins. We are badly mistaken, we are still very much loved by Jesus for the reason that Jesus doesn’t love as we love. His love for us is infinite while our love for our fellowmen is finite. Let us therefore take advantage of this infinite love of God by completely walking away from our sinfulness.

Let us thank Jesus for loving us even if we don’t deserve to be loved and let us humbly ask Him to forgive us for the many sins that we’ve committed.  …