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

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Reflection for Thursday October 2, The Holy Guardian Angels; Matthew 18:1-5, 10

Gospel: Matthew 18:1-5, 10
The disciples approached Jesus and said, “Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?” He called a child over, placed it in their midst, and said, “Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.

“See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father.”
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Reflection:
Why did the disciples asked Jesus about who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? Were they expecting that Jesus would tell them that they would be one of the greatest in the kingdom of heaven because they are close to Him? From all indication this question of the disciples was asked to serve their own egos and Jesus knew about this.

 Therefore to straighten out things and to tell the disciples that self-seeking individuals will not be the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Jesus told the disciples; “Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven (Matthew 18:3-4).

The Kingdom of Heaven is reserved for the humble only for we cannot ascend heaven by our own effort. And we cannot ascend heaven without dependence on the good Lord. Therefore children are not only perfect models of humility they are also perfect examples for their reliance on their parents.  Could children exist by themselves? No they could not exist by themselves they need their parents to be with them to survive.

In like manner the disciples did not rely on themselves they humbly relied on God rather than in themselves. This was perhaps one of the salient point of Jesus when He called the child to their midst (Matthew 18:2).

This also applies to all of us, we cannot rely on our riches (If ever we have riches) no matter how presently rich we are. We cannot rely on our power as well no matter how presently powerful we are for all of these are creation of this world that could evaporate from our hands anytime. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Wednesday October 1, Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus, Virgin and Doctor of the Church; Luke 9:57-62

Gospel: Luke 9:57-62
As Jesus and his disciples were proceeding on their journey, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus answered him, “Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head.” And to another he said, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, let me go first and bury my father.” But he answered him, “Let the dead bury their dead. But you, go and proclaim the Kingdom of God.” And another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but first let me say farewell to my family at home.” Jesus answered him, “No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the Kingdom of God.”
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Reflection:
What does it require to follow Jesus? It requires us to leave everything behind that could hamper our faithful and enduring discipleship. Is it not possible to follow Jesus and then remain attached to the things that we used to have? No, it’s never possible to follow and remain with what we used to have.

Can we follow and at the same time continue to sin? Can we follow and at the same time be attached with material things? Can we follow yet still love the lifestyle of this world? No we can’t, when we decide to follow Jesus this simply means that we are ready to leave everything behind us most especially our own sinfulness for the sake of our discipleship for Jesus.

To follow Jesus is initially difficult no question about it for it requires a radical change of our lifestyles! But fear not to follow because as we decide we will learn also to depend not on ourselves but on Jesus alone.  We will have the enlightenment to bring and trust our everything  including our very lives to Jesus. It’s like you have somebody who is always there for you when you decide to follow Him.

What if we are very much sinful? Would Jesus still call us to follow Him? Yes absolutely, the more sinful we are the more that Jesus calls us to follow Him. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Tuesday September 30, Saint Jerome, Priest and Doctor of the Church; Luke 9:51-56

Gospel: Luke 9:51-56
When the days for Jesus to be taken up were fulfilled, he resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem, and he sent messengers ahead of him. On the way they entered a Samaritan village to prepare for his reception there, but they would not welcome him because the destination of his journey was Jerusalem. When the disciples James and John saw this they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?” Jesus turned and rebuked them,
and they journeyed to another village.
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Reflection:
Why did Jesus decided to enter a Samaritan village when He knew that He would not be welcomed there? He could just have passed by and not went there, He could have chosen another way to avoid passing through the Samaritan territory. But He chose to go to a place where He was not welcome.   

This we attribute with the deep desire of Jesus to build friendship and to reach-out even to those who are hostile to Him. The Samaritans knew that Jesus was a Jew going to Jerusalem an area that the Samaritans dislike.

What does Jesus teach us in this gospel episode? We need to reach-out also even to those who are not welcoming of us. We need to do this so that we could offer the olive branch of peace and friendship to them. If they would not accept our offer it’s up to them what is important is we do what we have to do as followers of Jesus.

It’s not easy to offer peace and friendship to those who do not want our friendship. And it’s not easy to humble ourselves before others most especially before those who dislike us. But this is the way of Jesus, Her did not only made Himself available to those who like Him. He also offered Himself even to those who despised Him.

Are we willing to offer the olive branch of peace and friendship to those who dislike us? Are we willing to reach-out and humble ourselves before them? – Marino J. Dasmarinas      

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Reflection for Monday September 29, Saints Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael, Archangels; John 1:47-51


Gospel: John 1:47-51
Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him, “Here is a true child of Israel. There is no duplicity in him.” Nathanael said to him, “How do you know me?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree.” Nathanael answered him, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than this.” And he said to him, “Amen, amen, I say to you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”
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Reflection:
Do you believe in angels? In the bible there are many passages that tell us of the reality of angels. For example Hebrews 1:13-14 tells us; 13 God never said to any of his angels: Sit here at my right side until I put your enemies as a footstool under your feet. 14 For all these spirits are only servants, and God sends them to help those who shall be saved. Psalm 91:11 tells us this as well; 11 For he will command his angels to guard you in all your ways.

 Angels are real and God sends them to us to direct our ways toward Him. But many of us refuse to listen to the voice of angels we instead listen to what this world dictates upon us. Notice for example the aggressive advertising being employed by companies to announce their new product/s. These advertisers dictate upon us to buy their new hi-tech gadget/s and so forth. But come to think about it, do we really need it? Often times we don’t actually need it we simply listen to the aggressive advertisement.

We must be careful because this is the reality of our world right now. This world uses many devious methods for us to be enslaved by it. Let us not be discouraged nonetheless because God sends us His angels to point our ways to Him and to let us know that the infinite love of God is always there for us.

In hindsight, is it also possible for us to become an angel to somebody in need of spiritual direction? To somebody in need of encouragement, motivation or even material help? Yes it is very much possible that we could become God’s living and walking angel in this world today!

Do you want to become an angel of God? - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Sunday September 28, Twenty-sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time: Matthew 21:28-32


Gospel: Matthew 21:28-32
Jesus said to the chief priests and elders of the people: "What is your opinion? A man had two sons. He came to the first and said, 'Son, go out and work in the vineyard today.' He said in reply, 'I will not, ' but afterwards changed his mind and went. The man came to the other son and gave the same order. He said in reply, 'Yes, sir, ‘but did not go. Which of the two did his father's will?" They answered, "The first." Jesus said to them, "Amen, I say to you, tax collectors and prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God before you. When John came to you in the way of righteousness, you did not believe him; but tax collectors and prostitutes did. Yet even when you saw that, you did not later change your minds and believe him."
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Reflection:
What do we do when we hear the voice of God calling us to walk away from all of our sinfulness? Do we simply hear without acting on it? Or we hear and then we act and live our life once again worthy in the eyes of God. Many of us might be dismissive of this call of God to repentance, we might simply brush it aside and dismiss it as nothing or insignificant to our lives in this world.

But God did not only create us for this world alone there is something higher that lies beyond this world. There is something that follows after our existence in this world; and this is no other than heaven.

In our gospel for this Sunday there is this son who was asked by his father to work in his vineyard (Matthew 21:28). The son initially said that he will not go to his father’s vineyard but upon pondering about the order of his father. The son had a change of heart and went to the vineyard to work there (Matthew 21:29).   

God in our readings and our gospel for this Sunday is inviting us to have a conversion. We who are all sinners are being encouraged by God to have a change of heart so that we could walk away from our sinfulness.  Let us not worry if for so many times we said no to His offer of conversion. For He will not count the many times that we refused Him what is important for the Lord is the here and now and our yes to Him!

Are we all not tired yet of committing sin? Are we not tired yet of a noisy life, life without peace and serenity? The reality is sin has not brought us anything good except more problems and disturbance in our lives. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Why not have a change of heart and completely walk away from sin? - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Repleksyon para sa September 28, Ika-26 na Linggo sa Karaniwang Panahon; Mateo 21:28-32

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Reflection for Saturday September 27, Saint Vincent de Paul, Priest; Luke 9:43b-45


Gospel: Luke 9:43b-45
While they were all amazed at his every deed, Jesus said to his disciples, “Pay attention to what I am telling you. The Son of Man is to be handed over to men.” But they did not understand this saying; its meaning was hidden from them so that they should not understand it, and they were afraid to ask him about this saying.
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Reflection:
We can’t help but wonder why the disciples were afraid to ask Jesus to elaborate His meaningful statement that He is going to be handed over to men. Did they sense that something disturbing is going to happen to Jesus soon? Were they afraid to hear something that would deal with suffering and the cross? Or the disciples were simply used to the image of Jesus as a miracle worker and healer.

Is it only for His miracles and healings that we follow Jesus? Perhaps yes, many of us are only after Jesus the miracle worker and Jesus the healer. But if we are only after His miracles and healings then this is not true discipleship.

True discipleship happen to us when we are also ready to suffer for Jesus and when we are also ready to carry our own cross for Jesus. We cannot separate Jesus from suffering because He himself brutally suffered. Thus we cannot also separate ourselves from suffering/s if we truly follow Jesus.

Nevertheless, let us not be afraid to suffer for our discipleship for Jesus because our suffering for Jesus will not be in vain. There is always something glorious after carrying our own cross for Jesus. We may not know it immediately but there surely will be glory after we endure our cross for the sake of Jesus. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Friday September 26, Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time; Luke 9:18-22


Gospel: Luke 9:18-22
Once when Jesus was praying in solitude, and the disciples were with him, he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” They said in reply, “John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, ‘One of the ancient prophets has arisen.’” Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter said in reply, “The Christ of God.” He rebuked them and directed them not to tell this to anyone.

He said, “The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised.”
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Reflection:
If Jesus would ask us, who am I to you? How would we answer Him? Would we answer based on what we know about Jesus or we answer Him in a much profound manner like you are my Lord and my God and I feel your abiding presence in my life everyday.

We must not limit our knowledge about Jesus to what we read or up to what only our minds would feed us. We must dive deeper than that in such a way that Jesus is already part and parcel of our daily lives. This only means that we read and live His teachings.

We become more productive followers of Jesus if we read and live His teachings because this would open us to a much deeper intimacy with Him. If we only read or hear and we don’t live His teachings our discipleship is lacking in substance.

We have to know Jesus and then we have to live Jesus these two (Know and live Jesus) must always go together. For it will help us endure the many trials/even sufferings that we would be facing as we exist in this world.  

Do you live the teachings of Jesus? - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Thursday September 25, Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time; Luke 9:7-9


Gospel: Luke 9:7-9
Herod the tetrarch heard about all that was happening, and he was greatly perplexed because some were saying, “John has been raised from the dead”; others were saying, “Elijah has appeared”; still others, “One of the ancient prophets has arisen.” But Herod said, “John I beheaded. Who then is this about whom I hear such things?” And he kept trying to see him.
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Reflection:
What happens to us when we do something wrong and immoral? We are perpetually bothered by our conscience; we are quick to conclude that some events in our life are related to the wrong that we have done. This disturbance in our minds would continue to bother us until such time that we reach a closure (Whatever that closure would be) on the wrong that we have done.    

Herod the tetrarch was very much bothered when news came to him about Jesus. Why? Because Herod killed an innocent man in John, King Herod was already being tortured by his conscience about the wrong that he had done to John. This is perhaps the reason why Herod said, “John I beheaded. Who then is this about whom I hear such things (Luke 9:9)?”

What is the cure so that we would not be bothered by our conscience and so that we would not lose sleep over something? Let us avoid doing wrong and immoral let us strive to be clean before God and our fellowmen. This is the only cure available for us so that we could avoid being tortured by our conscience. – Marino J. Dasmarinas

Monday, September 22, 2014

Reflection for Wednesday September 24, Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time; Luke 9:1-6


Gospel: Luke 9:1-6
Jesus summoned the Twelve and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them to proclaim the Kingdom of God and to heal the sick. He said to them, “Take nothing for the journey, neither walking stick, nor sack, nor food, nor money, and let no one take a second tunic. Whatever house you enter, stay there and leave from there. And as for those who do not welcome you, when you leave that town, shake the dust from your feet in testimony against them.” Then they set out and went from village to village proclaiming the Good News and curing diseases everywhere.
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Reflection:
How do you live in this world? Do you live with your trust and confidence in Jesus or you are living with your trust on yourself and in this world?

When Jesus sent the twelve apostles to their mission of evangelization He told them this: “Take nothing for the journey, neither walking stick, nor sack, nor food, nor money, and let no one take a second tunic (Luke 9:3). What does this very important statement of Jesus imply to the apostles? Jesus in essence was telling the apostles, rely on no one but me for I will provide for all of your needs!

Did they rely on Jesus? Yes of course except for Judas Iscariot who betrayed Him. The eleven of them relied on Jesus that’s why they were very successful in their mission of evangelization. Many of them even gave their lives for their mission and reliance for Jesus.

This is a good point of reflection for all of us as we continue our journey in this fleeting world. To whom do we rest our lives in this world? Do we rest it on Jesus or we rest it on this world and ourselves. Many of us continue to work so hard to accumulate temporal things. There are even some of us or many of us who even work during Sundays so that we could have what we want. In exchange for what, our worship for God at Holy Mass?

Reliance on material things of this world will bring us only to emptiness. Even if we accumulate all of the material things of this world we would still not be happy we would still have this very deep feeling of void. What if we rely on Jesus? Then we are already complete and we are the happiest and most contented person in this world.  For the simple reason that Jesus is more than enough than any material thing/s of this world.    

We cannot bring to the next life the worldly things that we rely on this world. But if we rely on Jesus if we rest our lives in Him this would assure us of eternal life in heaven with Jesus. 

To whom do you rely? - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Tuesday September 23, Saint Pius of Pietrelcina, Priest; Luke 8:19-21


Gospel: Luke 8:19-21
The mother of Jesus and his brothers came to him but were unable to join him because of the crowd. He was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside and they wish to see you.” He said to them in reply, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and act on it.”
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Reflection:
Who would not want to become a relative of Jesus? Of course we all want to become His relatives. But Jesus has one important requirement for all of us so that we could become His relatives: Hear His word/s and act on it (Luke 8:21).

Do we hear the word of God and act upon it? For example the commandment of Jesus to love our enemies and to do good to those who hurt us (Matthew 5:44). Do we love our enemies and do good to them?  Or we immediately follow our natural instinct not to love those who don’t love us and hurt those who hurt us.

But what would happen if we follow our selfish human instinct? There would be more hatred and hurt, more walls than bridges. Mahatma Gandhi once said: An Eye for an eye would only make the whole world blind.

It’s not easy to become a relative of Jesus if we put so much value to ourselves. If we look at ourselves so highly and we immediately despise those who’ve hurt and disrespected us. But Jesus himself has forgiven those who’ve hurt, persecuted and killed Him.   

Though it’s difficult to become a relative of Jesus for it requires humility and forgetting of ourselves. Nevertheless we must aspire to become a relative of Jesus and not aspire to become a lover of our egos and high sense of ourselves – Marino J. Dasmarinas

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Reflection for Monday September 22, Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time; Luke 8:16-18

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Gospel: Luke 8:16-18
Jesus said to the crowd: No one who lights a lamp conceals it with a vessel or sets it under a bed; rather, he places it on a lampstand so that those who enter may see the light. For there is nothing hidden that will not become visible, and nothing secret that will not be known and come to light. Take care, then, how you hear. To anyone who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he seems to have will be taken away.”
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Reflection:
What is our mandate as baptized followers of Jesus? It’s to share in the ministry of evangelization of Jesus, this means that whatever we know about our catholic faith we must learn to share. So that our faith would continue to grow and prosper and in the process we save more lives and we give spiritual direction and substance to others lives.

In the midst of this world darkened by sin we should be like the lighted lamp that is placed on a lampstand that Jesus mentions in our gospel for today. We light this darkened world with the teaching of Jesus we light this darkened world by living our lives the way Jesus wants us to live it.

Just imagine a family that does not talk about Jesus. This means that they do not know Jesus and it’s safe to assume that the same family does not go to church or seldom goes to church for Holy Mass. What will happen to this kind of family? This is where the critical role of parents comes-in as bearers of the light of Jesus.

As much as possible parents must take advantage of the docility of their children  by giving and teaching them Jesus. Just imagine the life a child being lighted by Jesus as he/she grows. This means that this child is brought to Holy Mass by his/her parents. This means that the same child is introduce to Jesus by His life in the bible. And this means that this child is being lighted by the teachings of Jesus and the church. 

This kind of child will never go wrong as he/she grows-up.  This kind of family will have no fear as it journeys through life because the light of Jesus is with them.

Do you still share the light of Jesus to the internet savvy children of today? Is the lamp of Jesus always aflame in your family? - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Reflection for Saturday September 20, Saint Andrew Kim Tae-gŏn, Priest, and Paul Chŏng Ha-sang, and Companions, Martyrs; Luke 8:4-15

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Gospel: Luke 8:4-15
4 When a large crowd gathered, with people from one town after another journeying to him, he spoke in a parable. 5 “A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path and was trampled, and the birds of the sky ate it up. 6 Some seed fell on rocky ground, and when it grew, it withered for lack of moisture. 7 Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew with it and choked it. 8 And some seed fell on good soil, and when it grew, it produced fruit a hundredfold.” After saying this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear.

9 Then his disciples asked him what the meaning of this parable might be. 10 He answered, “Knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of God has been granted to you; but to the rest, they are made known through parables so that ‘they may look but not see, and hear but not understand.’ 11 “This is the meaning of the parable. The seed is the word of God. 12 Those on the path are the ones who have heard, but the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts that they may not believe and be saved. 13 Those on rocky ground are the ones who, when they hear, receive the word with joy, but they have no root; they believe only for a time and fall away in time of trial. 14 As for the seed that fell among thorns, they are the ones who have heard, but as they go along, they are choked by the anxieties and riches and pleasures of life, and they fail to produce mature fruit. 15 But as for the seed that fell on rich soil, they are the ones who, when they have heard the word, embrace it with a generous and good heart, and bear fruit through perseverance.
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Reflection:
How do you receive the word of God that you read and hear? For example when you read the words of Jesus in  the bible, do you reflect upon it, discern it and then share it? Or you just read it and then it ends there nothing eventful with your reading of the words of God. 

How do you react when you hear the words of God proclaimed during Holy Mass? Do you allow yourself to be moved by it? That it immediately stirs you to do good and live your faith so that you could make a positive Impact on the lives of your fellowmen.

Jesus words is the seeds that He plants in our hearts and Jesus expectation is always for us to be fruit bearing followers. Where others could learn about Jesus and our faith from us. We must not allow ourselves to become followers in name only who simply absorb the words of God and do nothing. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Friday September 19, Twenty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time; Luke 8:1-3

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Gospel: Luke 8:1-3
1 Afterward he (Jesus) journeyed from one town and village to another, preaching and proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. Accompanying him were the Twelve 2 and some women who had been cured of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out, 3 Joanna, the wife of Herod’s steward Chuza, Susanna, and many others who provided for them out of their resources.
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Reflection:
Have you already preached or even shared the good news about Jesus? The gospel for this Friday opens our eyes to the preaching ministry of Jesus. Have you shared Jesus? For example through your life, through actual preaching or sharing or even writing on the internet anything that deals about Jesus.

An active follower is not ashamed to share Jesus, he/she find ways and means to share the teachings of Jesus. Let us reflect on this for we may have not yet shared Jesus or yes we have already shared Jesus but we don’t actually live what we have shared or preached about Jesus.

Be not be afraid to share Jesus for by sharing Jesus you straighten crooked lives. By sharing Jesus you are able to give hope to the hopeless and by sharing Jesus you save lives. Jesus is alive and kicking up to this very moment for He dwells in your heart.

It is therefore incumbent upon you to share this living Jesus and to let others know how Jesus continuously creates miracles in your daily life. So that they would also be transformed by Jesus the same way that Jesus is continuously transforming you up to this very hour.

Have you already preached or even shared the good news about Jesus? - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Reflection for Thursday September 18, Twenty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time; Luke 7:36-50

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Gospel: Luke 7:36-50
36 One of the Pharisees asked him to eat with him, and he went into the Pharisee's house, and took his place at table. 37 And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was at table in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment, 38 and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears, and wiped them with the hair of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment. 

39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited him saw it, he said to himself, "If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of  woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner." 40 And Jesus answering said to him, "Simon, I have something to say to you." And he answered, "What is it, Teacher?" 41 "A certain creditor had two debtors; one owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he forgave them both. Now which of them will love him more?" 43 Simon answered, "The one, I suppose, to whom he forgave more." And he said to him, "You have judged rightly." 

44 Then turning toward the woman he said to Simon, "Do you see this woman? I entered your house, you gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet  my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. 46 You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment.

 47 Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven, for she loved much; but he who is forgiven little, loves little." 48 And he said to her, "Your sins are forgiven." 49 Then those who were at table with him began to say among themselves, "Who is this, who even forgives sins?" 50 And he said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you; go in peace."
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Reflection:
What compelled the woman to wet the feet of Jesus with her tears? What compelled her to wipe Jesus feet with her hair and to kiss Jesus feet and anoint them with an ointment?

It was her sinfulness, she was already tired of living her life in sin that’s why when she learned that Jesus was in Simon’s house. She did everything to get near Him so that she could humbly honor Him with whatever humble gesture that she could offer Jesus.

Never did she thought that Jesus would condemn and judge her  she simply focused on her need to be forgiven. This is Jesus for all of us, a God who will never condemn our sinfulness no matter how serious. A God who will never judge us based on the sins that we have committed in the past.

What is important for Jesus is the here and now, never mind the past sins for as long as we have the humility to ask for forgiveness. Perhaps, the humble gesture that the woman did was her way of asking for forgiveness of her past sins. The woman spoke to Jesus through her heart, she spoke through her acts of humility. And Jesus heard the desire of her repentant heart.

What are you capable of doing to show Jesus that you’re repentant of your sins? - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Reflection for Wednesday September 17, Twenty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time; Luke 7:31-35

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Gospel: Luke 7:31-35
(Jesus said to the crowds) 31 “Then to what shall I compare the people of this generation? What are they like? 32 They are like children who sit in the marketplace and call to one another, ‘We played the flute for you, but you did not dance. We sang a dirge, but you did not weep. 33 For John the Baptist came neither eating food nor drinking wine, and you said, ‘He is possessed by a demon. 34 The Son of Man came eating and drinking and you said, ‘Look, he is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners. 35 But wisdom is vindicated by all her children.”
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Reflection:
Why did the Pharisees and scribes refuse to hear the message of conversion and hope of John and Jesus? There are many reasons why they refused to hear their message of conversion. But primarily Jesus and John were nobody for them; they (Pharisees and scribes) were the ruling class and rulers of their time. So why hear the message of these two nobodies?

 By their contemptuous treatment of John and Jesus they deprived themselves of a meaningful life. A life that is not based on earthly power but based on a higher power that is beyond this world.

Why do many of us refuse to hear the conversion message of John and Jesus? Because we love this world more than we love the heavenly world beyond this world. This is the reason why so many of us refuse to hear the conversion message of John and Jesus.

But what will it do us if we amass all the things in this world if we are without Jesus? Could we bring to the next life the wealth that we have amassed in this world? Could our love of earthly wealth help us gain passage to heaven?

What if we hear and ponder the conversion message of John and Jesus?  We will certainly gain entry to heaven even if we are materially poor in this present and fleeting world.  

It’s definitely better to be materially poor yet have Jesus in our lives than to be rich without Jesus. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Monday, September 15, 2014

Reflection for Tuesday September 16, Memorial of Saints Cornelius, Pope, and Cyprian, Bishop, Martyrs; Luke 7:11-17

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Gospel: Luke 7:11-17
11 (Jesus) journeyed to a city called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd accompanied him. 12 As he drew near to the gate of the city, a man who had died was being carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. A large crowd from the city was with her. 13 When the Lord saw her, he was moved with pity for her and said to her, “Do not weep.” 14 He stepped forward and touched the coffin; at this the bearers halted, and he said, “Young man, I tell you, arise!” 15 The dead man sat up and began to speak, and Jesus gave him to his mother. 16 Fear seized them all, and they glorified God, exclaiming, “A great prophet has arisen in our midst,” and “God has visited his people.” 17 This report about him spread through the whole of Judea and in all the surrounding region.
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Reflection:
Imagine the sorrow, loneliness and perhaps the feeling of hopelessness of the widow whose son was to be buried. She had nothing more to rely on, her husband has already died and her only son is to be buried. Thus the feeling of loneliness pervade all over her.

Then came the unexpected encounter with Jesus who was going to a place called Nain. Jesus saw her, He went to her and told her, Do not weep (Luke 7:13); after which Jesus raised back to life her dead son. Surely her feelings of loneliness was suddenly replaced by feelings of hope, optimism and gladness. For the reason that her only son was  brought to life again by Jesus.

We all go through this feeling of loneliness, emptiness and feeling of being alone as if nobody cares anymore with our plight. But make no mistake about it because somebody still cares and that somebody is no other than Jesus. Let us continue to have Faith and Hope in Him for He will always be there for us.

Do you know how to avoid the feeling of being alone, the feeling of without hope and the feeling of emptiness?  Always have an encounter with Jesus through the Holy Mass through our personal prayer and through the Holy Rosary. Through the prayers that were taught to us by the church and by Jesus himself (Matthew 6:9-13).

Do you always seek an encounter with Jesus? – Marino J. Dasmarinas

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Reflection for Monday September 15, Our Lady of Sorrows; John 19:25-27

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Gospel: John 19:25-27
25 Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala. 26 When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son.” 27 Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his home.
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Reflection:
Do you know how it is to be sorrowful? The Blessed Mother knows it deep in her immaculate heart. It started when Simeon told her that her son will be a sign of contradiction and her soul would be pierced by a sword (Luke 1:34-35). Then it culminated to the point where we are now in our gospel.

We cannot fathom how the Blessed Mother felt during that time when she was at the foot of the cross looking-up to her badly bruised and dying son Jesus. Nonetheless, even if she was deep in her sorrow she still found courage and strength in her son. For she obeyed what Jesus told her that from thereon she would treat John her son that’s why she went to the house of John and stayed there.

Do you always find strength and courage in Jesus especially during the sorrowful moments of your life? Do you always ask the Blessed Mother to pray for you to make your faith in Jesus as strong as hers?

Prayer:
Lord Jesus in the midst of our sorrows, trials and sufferings we pray to you to give us the strength and courage to face whatever this world would give us. Give us the same strength and courage that you gave the Blessed Mother when she was sorrowfully looking-up to you at the foot of the cross.

Please continue to strengthen us Dear Lord Jesus, give us the gift to trust you more than we trust ourselves.        

Our Most Blessed Virgin Mary we dearly ask you to pray for us. Amen. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Friday, September 12, 2014

Reflection for Sunday September 14, Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross: John 3:13-17

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Gospel: John 3:13-17
(Jesus said to Nicodemus) 13 No one has gone up to heaven except the one who has come down from heaven, the Son of Man. 14 And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up 15  so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.” 16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him.
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Reflection:
Why do we suffer or what is the purpose of our suffering in this world? We suffer because we refuse to embrace the love of God. Human suffering is not a suffering that God created for us because it’s us who create our own suffering/s. And when we suffer we point not to ourselves as the culprit but to God as the creator of our suffering/s.

Think about the many wars that the powerful leaders of this world have created. Think about the many personal and family problems that we have created for ourselves. Nevertheless in the midst of our self-created sufferings there’s hope and this hope is being offered to us by Jesus on the cross.

Perhaps, many of us are averse to look at this cross of Jesus because we are reminded of Jesus’ own sufferings. We are reminded that to suffer entails hardship and sacrifice. But how could we know that there’s hope, healing and salvation in the cross of Jesus if we will not look-up to it, if we will not embrace it and if we will not hold-on to it?   

In our first reading the people that were saved by Moses from the slavery of Pharaoh created their own sufferings by complaining to Moses about their hardships. And by complaining they were severely punished by God yet they would also be saved by the same merciful God. If they’ll look up the bronze serpent mounted on a pole. We all know that the bronze serpent that was mounted on the pole that healed the suffering people in our first reading is now represented by Jesus on the cross in our gospel.   

We have so many sufferings in this world and majority if not all of these sufferings are created by us that we ironically often times blame on God. Nevertheless our merciful God so loved us that He let His only begotten son to die on the cross for our salvation.

Do you have a cross with Jesus nailed upon it in your house or in your room? Look at it hold it if you could and prayerfully ask Jesus to heal all your pains and sufferings. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Repleksyon para sa September 14, Pagtatampok sa Krus na Banal; Juan 3:13-17

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Mabuting Balita: Juan 3:13-17
(Sinabi ni Jesus kay Nicodemo) 13 Wala pang sinumang umakyat sa langit kundi ang bumaba mula sa langit, ang Anak ng Tao. 14 At kung paanong itinaas ni Moises ang tansong ahas doon sa ilang, gayundin naman, kailangang itaas ang Anak ng Tao, 15 upang ang sinumang sumampalataya sa kanya ay magkaroon ng buhay na walang hanggan. 16   Sapagkat gayon na lamang ang pag-ibig ng Diyos sa sangkatauhan, kaya't ibinigay niya ang kanyang kaisa-isang Anak, upang ang sinumang sumampalataya sa kanya ay hindi mapahamak, kundi magkaroon ng buhay na walang hanggan. 17 sinugo ng Diyos ang kanyang Anak, hindi upang hatulang maparusahan ang mga tao, kundi upang iligtas ang mga ito sa pamamagitan niya.
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Repleksyon:
Bakit ba tayo may mga paghihirap dito sa mundo? Tayo ay may mga paghihirap dahil ayaw nating yakapin ang pag-ibig ng Diyos. Ang ating mga paghihirap ay hindi mga paghihirap na ginawa ng Diyos para sa atin. Sa dahilan na tayo mismo kadalasan ang gumagawa nito at pag tayo ay nag hihirapan na ay karamihan sa atin ay ang sinisisi ay ang Diyos.

Isipin nalang po natin ang napakaraming giyera na ginagawa ng mga lider nga mga makapangyarihan mga bansa. Isipin nalang natin ang ating mga personal at mga problema sa pamilya na walang ibang may gawa kundi tayo rin naman. Pero sa gitna ng ating mga ginagawang mga problema o sa gitna ng ating mga paghihirap ay may pag hilom at pag-asa at ito ay gustong ibigay sa atin ni Jesus na naka pako sa krus.  

Marahil ay karamihan po sa atin ay ayaw tingnan si Jesus na nasa krus dahil ito ay nag papaalala sa atin ng pagpapakasakit ng ating panginoong Jesu Kristo. Nagpapaalala ito sa atin na ang paghihirap ay may kaakibat na mga sakripisyo at mga problema. Pero paano po natin ma didiskubre na may pag-asa, may pagpapagaling at kaligtasan sa krus ni Jesus kung hindi tayo titingin dito kung hindi natin yayakapin ito at kung hindi natin hahawakan ito?  

Sa ating unang pagbasa ang mga taong na iniligtas ni Moises sa pagka alipin ng Paraon ay gumawa ng kanilang sariling problema. Nang sila ay mag reklamo kay Moses tungkol sa kanilang paghihirap sa ilang. At ng dahil sa kanilang pag rereklamo sila ay pinarusahan ng Diyos. Pero sila rin naman ay ililigtas ng mahabaging Diyos na ito kung sila ay titingin sa ahas na tanso na nasa dulo ng tikin. Alam po natin na ang tansong ahas na nasa dulo ng tikin na gumamot sa kanila ay kulmakatawan kay Jesus na nakapako sa krus sa ating mabuting balita.

Marami po tayong mga problema at paghihirap dito sa mundong ito at karamihan po nito ay tayo rin ang may gawa na sa kasamaang palad ay isinisisi natin sa Diyos. Pero ganon na lamang tayo kamahal ng Diyos na ibinigay niya sa atin ang kanyang bugtong na anak na mamatay sa krus para sa ating kaligtasan.

Mayroon kabang krus na nakapako si Jesus sa bahay mo o sa kuwarto mo? Tingnan mo ito, hawakan mo ito at boung pananampalatayang hilingin mo kay Jesus. Na gamutin niya ang lahat ng iyong mga pinagdadaanang pasakit, problema at pagdurusa. - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Reflection for Saturday September 13, Saint John Chrysostom, Bishop and Doctor of the Church; Luke 6:43-49

Gospel: Luke 6:43-49
(Jesus said to his disciples) “A good tree does not bear rotten fruit, nor does a rotten tree bear good fruit. For every tree is known by its own fruit. For people do not pick figs from thornbushes, nor do they gather grapes from brambles. A good person out of the store of goodness in his heart produces good, but an evil person out of a store of evil produces evil; for from the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks.

“Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ but not do what I command? I will show you what someone is like who comes to me, listens to my words, and acts on them. That one is like a man building a house, who dug deeply and laid the foundation on rock; when the flood came, the river burst against that house but could not shake it because it had been well built. But the one who listens and does not act is like a person who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the river burst against it, it collapsed at once and was completely destroyed.”
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Reflection:
Who is the foundation of your life? If Jesus is the foundation of your life you’re in the hands of the most powerful rock of this world. Nothing can defeat you and nothing can destroy you because your life is strongly founded in Jesus.

Should you rest already and feel secure because you trusted your life in Jesus? No, because you have a mission and your mission is to share the gentleness of Jesus to your fellowmen. Remember that you are the good tree that Jesus mentions in the gospel and out of your goodness you must share your fruit which is no other than Jesus.

Let us not keep our love for Jesus to ourselves let us share this burning love with others so that they too will feel the love of Jesus. They too will feel the healing and forgiveness of Jesus because Jesus is very much needed today more than any other time in our history.

Just imagine those who live their lives without the guidance of Jesus there are hundreds even millions of them. If you share Jesus even to only one of them you have already fulfilled your mission as His fruitful follower. And who knows by your courage of sharing Jesus you may change lives because you cared to share Jesus.  

Will you care to share Jesus? - Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for Friday September 12, Twenty-third Week in Ordinary Time; Luke 6:39-42

Gospel: Luke 6:39-42
Jesus told his disciples a parable: “Can a blind person guide a blind person? Will not both fall into a pit? No disciple is superior to the teacher; but when fully trained, every disciple will be like his teacher. Why do you notice the splinter in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own? How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me remove that splinter in your eye,’ when you do not even notice the wooden beam in your own eye? You hypocrite! Remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter in your brother’s eye.”
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Reflection:
In courtroom litigation before a judge gives his verdict or judgment he sees to it that every witness from the different sides is heard. This assures that whatever decision that the judge would give, is appropriate and based on the facts of the case.

We often times act as judge in our own sphere of environment. For example a father or a mother acts as a judge when he/she gives orders to their children not to do this and that.  They also act as judge when they admonish and give disciplinary actions to their children.

But in giving judgment or orders, do we see to it that we are worthy to give judgment?   If we are worthy of the judgment that we give then that is very good for our orders  will be followed. But what if we are not good role models? Here the problem lies, if we are not worthy to give judgment.
 
The gospel tells us that before we give judgment to anyone we must see to it first that we have the moral authority and ascendancy to give that judgment. And how would we do this? We always have to have a self-reflection about ourselves, such as, am I a good role model? Do I follow what I tell others to do? Well and good if we are good role models and if we lead by example.

But what if we are not?  Then the judgment or orders that we give will simply not be heard and it might even boomerang back to us. - Marino J. Dasmarinas