CEASE THROWING STONES

Monday 3rd April – Monday of the 5th week of Lent

Reflection: John 8:1-11

CEASE THROWING STONES

Something in is repulsed at the sight of injustice, dishonesty or maltreatment. We are often taken aback when we see the atrocities committed by people around us. This is rightfully so because the law of good and bad is written on our consciences as human beings. Yet, isn’t it surprising that we excuse our own selves for the same atrocious acts we condemn in others?

The woman in today’s gospel reading was certainly guilty of the accusation brought against her for which the Pharisees and scribes had condemned her to death. Jesus saw the whole episode from a different perspective…the perspective that realizes the struggles with sin we all experience and offers a second chance at holiness. It is this through same perspective Christ sees you and me and calls us to see our brothers and sisters.

Beloved, Lent is a time to celebrate God’s mercy and deep love for us. The love that makes him offer us a chance repeatedly…the love that makes Him say to us “Go away, and do not sin anymore.” Even more so, Lent is a time to stop throwing stones of condemnation and judgement of our brothers and sisters, bearing in mind that we all are sinners in need of redemption. Let us come to our Lord in the sacrament of reconciliation and seek His mercy as we approach the celebration of his passion,

Prayer: Thank you dear Lord for your mercy. Please help me to see others as you see them. Deliver me from urge to pass judgement on others. Amen.

Faith Pearls: CCC 1430 – Jesus’ call to conversion and penance, like that of the prophets before him, does not aim first at outward works, “sackcloth and ashes,” fasting and mortification, but at the conversion of the heart, interior conversion. Without this, such penances remain sterile and false; however, interior conversion urges expression in visible signs, gestures and works of penance.

Hide a Treasure: “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:16 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Dan 13:41-62; Ps 23:1-6; Jn 8: 1-11

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REVIVING OUR HOPE

Tuesday 28th March – Tuesday of the 4th week of Lent

Reflection: John 5: 1-3, 5-16

REVIVING OUR HOPE

Thirty-eight years is certainly a long time, taking into consideration the average life span of we humans. Regardless of how old the man whom Christ healed was, he had endured this crippling illness for most of his life. He must have been brought to the pool side several years earlier with high hopes of receiving healing but when he discovered he could not get into the pool first after so many attempts and so many years gone by, he may have lost all hope that he would ever be well again. He probably woke up that Sabbath morning and wondered if ever he would use his feet and work to the Temple like others did. Everything seemed dark and hopeless to Him until our Lord arrived on the scene and his story changed.

Beloved, we do not have to be paralyzed for thirty-eight years to know what a feeling of hopelessness means. You may feel like the dark tunnel of your life is simply getting longer and longer with no end in view. Christ reassures us in today’s readings that his presence makes all the difference. He asks you today: “Do you want to be well again?” Turn to Him in loving trust and let Him into those most difficult areas of your life. He wills to revive your hope. He desires to speak His word of healing and renewal. He is our helper close at hand in time of distress. Look up to Him in trust today and receive the strength and grace He has for you.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, I want to be made whole again. Please revive my hope that I may trust in you for healing and renewal. Amen.

Faith Pearls: YOUCAT 507 – What happens if you find that prayer does not help?

Prayer does not seek superficial success but rather the will of God and intimacy with him. God’s apparent silence is itself an invitation to take a step farther—in total devotion, boundless faith, endless expectation. Anyone who prays must allow God the complete freedom to speak whenever he wants, to grant whatever he wants, and to give himself however he wants.

Hide a Treasure: “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” Psalm 46:1 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Ezekiel 47:1-9, 12; Ps 46:2-9; Jn 5: 1-3, 5-16

A MERRY HEART

Friday 25th December-. Solemnity of The Birth of Our Lord.
REFLECTION: ISAIAH 52:7-10 A MERRY HEART

Wow! How time flies! Just like it is a dream, today we have come to another yuletide. First of all we wish a “Merry Christmas”. But how merry are you today? Are you truly merry? Well, friend, there may be so many reasons not to be merry, but really we have to find that happy spot in our souls today and give someone a big hug. Yes, a big hug. The Word of God says in the book of Proverbs that “a merry heart doeth good like a medicine”. (Prov. 17:22a). Wonderful, isn’t it?

 Beloved, today being the celebration of the birth of our Lord offers a wonderful opportunity for us to show that spirit of fraternity and oneness that should exist between us and those around us. We are encouraged to be the channel through which Christ will be born anew in the heart of someone else. The birth of Christ should be for us a new beginning. We don’t have to wait for the New Year before we take the decision to be a better person. Beloved, time waits for no one. One of the best decisions we can make this season is to be a blessing to someone else. Remember that when you give people joy, you also reap joy in return, when you give people peace, you also reap peace as well. 

So let’s go all out today and be merry, not forgetting to show love to all around us. One again, Merry Christmas.

PRAYER: Father please fill my heart with joy today by Your Holy Spirit, I ask in Jesus’ name. Amen.

HIDE A TREASURE: “Being cheerful keeps you healthy.” Proverbs 17:22a. GNB.

Today’s Readings: Isa.52:7-10; Heb.1:1-6; John1:1-18

CHRIST IS THE WAY

Monday 14th November – Memorial of St. John of the Cross, Priest & Doctor

Reflection: Psalm 25: 4-9

CHRIST IS THE WAY

Virtually every religion acknowledges the existence of a supreme deity and a definite means of communicating and connecting with the deity. From the most popular to the least, each one attempts to trace humanity to its divine source. Our faith as Christians is in the supreme creator of the universe; the one true God, and every true Christian would seek to stay connected with Him at every moment. In its deepest sense, Christianity provides Christ who is God made man as our means of staying connected with God. In living like Christ who is the “Way” we live in commune with our Heavenly Father.

The Psalmist’s prayer today is one that we often join in as we seek to know God’s ways and truth and God answers our heart-felt request through His son, Jesus Christ. In overcoming human weakness, Christ shows sinners how to be perfect as our heavenly Father is. (Matt 5: 47-48). Christ reveals to us the true nature of God which is Love. (1 Jn 4: 16) In Christ’s death and resurrection, we find strength to live in the image of God.

Friend in Christ, today try to live as Christ would; relying on God’s unfailing grace. Follow Christ and you will never get lost.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, today give me the grace to walk in your footsteps. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 339 – What does God’s grace do to us?

God’s grace brings us into the inner life of the Holy Trinity, into the exchange of love between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It makes us capable of living in God’s love and of acting on the basis of this love.

HIDE A TREASURE: “Our High Priest is not one who cannot feel sympathy for our weaknesses. On the contrary, we have a High Priest who was tempted in every way that we are, but did not sin.  Let us have confidence, then, and approach God’s throne, where ther is grace. There we will receive mercy and find grace to help us just when we need it” Hebrews 4: 15-16 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Numbers 24: 2-7, 15-17; Psalm 25: 4-9; Psalm 85: 8; Matthew 21: 23-27.

WHAT MATTERS MOST?

Thursday 3rd September- Memorial of St. Gregory the Great, Pope & Doctor

WHAT MATTERS MOST?

LUKE 5: 1-11

What a great day it is today! Jesus has not stopped doing good things, He is still in the business. Today’s reading recorded the great miracle he performed for Peter and his companions. It should however be noted that this miracle was able to take place because Simon Peter obeyed the master’s instruction. At the end, the miracle did not matter the most to them, rather the One who performed the miracle did. It is amazing how a person’s life can be transformed in just one genuine encounter with the Lord. It can make all the difference needed.

In our modern world today, it seems most of us have completely missed the goal of Christianity. Many of us come closer to God only when there is a pressing need and once the request is granted, off we are to our usual routine of doing things. God is indeed very merciful to us, but we must not take the mercy of God for granted. We are called as Christians to go after what matters the most, which is God Himself. When Peter and his companions pulled the net ashore, they left everything to follow Jesus because they have found something more to live for. They immediately switched from being ordinary fishermen to great soul winners. Therefore friend let’s buckle up and stop chasing things, instead let us chase the Maker Himself, He is worth devoting a lifetime to find. Ask yourself today what matters most to me? If your answer is not focused on Christ, kindly re-examine your life. “Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” (Mt 6:33)

PRAYER: Lord, help me that I may focus on you. Lead me not into the tempt of all ungodly things that matters to me.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: CCC 151: “We can believe in Jesus Christ because He is Himself God, the Word made flesh: “No one has ever seen God; the only Son, who is in the Father, He has made Him known.”

HIDE A TREASURE: “You will seek me, and you will find me because you will seek me with all your heart” Jeremiah 29:13.

Today’s readings: 1 Cor 1:9-14; Ps 98:2-6; Lk 5:1-11

CHRIST: THE GOOD SHEPHERD

Sunday 19th July – 16th Sunday of the year

CHRIST: THE GOOD SHEPHERD

Mark 6: 30-34

He took pity on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd, and he set himself to teach them at some length” Mk 6:34

The image of sheep needing a shepherd to guide them is one that very well describes us as young Christians. We are vulnerable and therefore need to be constantly guided and mentored. Just as Jesus was eager to teach the crowd in today’s gospel reading, so also does He earnestly desire to teach us.

He is the good shepherd who never abandons us even in the most inconvenient moment; the good shepherd who willingly lays down his life for the sheep (Jn 10:11). As loving as a good shepherd is, he has no power to protect the sheep that strays. Even though he makes effort to find the lost sheep, as long as the sheep is yet to be found, it remains an easy prey to wild animals. Hence, in our youthful exuberance and desire to be independent, let us not leave Christ’s covering. He guides us through our families, the Church, our teachers and other superiors. Let us not turn deaf ears to them as they try to guide us aright.

Dear friends, the crowd in today’s reading sought after Christ and got His attention and teaching as a reward. Are you willing to seek after Christ too? Are you willing to studying His word, to spend time with Him in prayer and to be united with Him in the Eucharist? Seek after Him beloved and you will receive all the direction and care the good shepherd has for you.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus, thank you for your constant care and direction. Please help me not to remove myself from your protection that I may not be prey to the evil ones. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 471Why is Abraham a model of prayer?

Abraham listened to God. He was willing to set out for wherever God commanded and to do what God willed. By his listening and his readiness to make a new start, he is a model for our prayer.

HIDE A TREASURE: “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me” John 10: 27 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Jeremiah 23: 1-6; Psalm 23: 1-6; Ephesians 3: 13-18; Mark 6: 30-34

LOOK BEYOND THE BREAD YOU EAT…

Sunday 7th June –Solemnity of the most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi)

Reflection: Mark 14: 22-26

LOOK BEYOND THE BREAD YOU EAT…

The body and blood express the life of the being that possesses them. Christ once taught His disciples in these words at the close of His earthly life: “Greater love has no man than this, than to lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13). There is therefore no greater expression of love than a sacrifice of life in its totality.

God; who is Love, gives His life in the sacrifice of His begotten Son (true God from true God and consubstantial with the Father). Christ out of perfect love gave a sacrifice of Himself for the salvation of the world at the first Eucharistic feast (Mass) during the Passover; with a perfect accomplishment of this ‘once for all’ sacrifice by His death on the Cross (Hebrews 9:12-14). At the Last Supper, He instituted the Eucharist as a memorial of His infinite Love. He gave us a daily nourishment of His true life: in the appearance of bread and wine that we may live His life of Love here on earth and join in the unending feast in heaven. With this perfect sacrifice, He sealed His covenant of love with us; as with the Israelites when Moses sprinkled the blood of sacrificed oxen after all the people had promised to live by the same divine covenant (Exodus 24: 3-8).

Friends in Christ, today we celebrate God’s love for us fully expressed in the mystery of the Holy Eucharist. Let us learn from Christ’s sacrifice as we feast at His table. Let us love as we have been loved: this is living by the divine commandment. Look beyond the bread you eat, see your savior and God. Look beyond the wine you drink, see His love for the world.

PRAYER: Dear God, give me perfect love like Yours. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 211 – How important is the Eucharist for the Church?

The celebration of the Eucharist is the heart of the Christian communion. In it the Church becomes Church.
We are not Church because we get along well, or because we happen to end up in the same parish community, but rather because in the Eucharist we receive the Body of Christ and are increasingly being transformed into the Body of Christ.

HIDE A TREASURE: “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him” John 6: 56 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Exodus 24: 3-8; Psalm 116: 12-13, 15-18; Mark 14: 12-16, 22-26