In the Gospel of today we hear how Jesus taught His audience with authority unlike the scribes and Pharisees who came before Him. To teach with authority is to demonstrate that everything comes from Him and not appealing to any outside authority to convince His audience as done by the scribes and Pharisees of His day. This finds confirmation in the first reading of today, when Moses spoke to the people saying the Lord says, “I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their kin, and will put my words into His mouth, He shall tell them all that I command Him” He taught with personal authority meaning that He needed no authority beyond Himself.READ MORE
One remarkable aspect we see in today’s liturgy is that Jesus begins his first public ministry by callingpeople to repentance and to believe the Gospel. His first sermon after His baptism were “This is thetime of fulfillment. The Kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe in the gospel.” It shows what Hecame to do, to call humanity to repentance and reconcile people with God. This message of repentancewas also the first sermon John the Baptist preached and equally the first sermon of Peter after theresurrection of Christ. Jesus’ sermon of repentance is immediately followed by an invitation of people tofollow Him and to believe in the gospel, the good news He has come to deliver. Similarly, the messageof repentance and reconciliation is also what we see in today’s first reading from the book of Jonah.The Lord orders Jonah to go to Nineveh, capital of Assyria and preach repentance to the Ninevites.READ MORE
The call of Samuel in the first reading demonstrates how God calls each of us individually. Just like Samuel who wasunaware of God’s call at the beginning, we too maybe unaware when God is calling but with patience, steadfastness, focus,open heart and mind we can recognize His voice in our lives. Just as Eli pointed out to Samuel that it was God calling him sotoo we can recognize God’s voice when we pay attention and listen to our parents, teachers, priests and those God hasplaced to look after us. As He called Samuel by name for a particular purpose so also God calls each of us by name for acertain mission and purpose He wants us to do. Samuel responded with “speak your servant is listening” when he realized itwas God calling him. How I am open to hear God’s voice and how ready and disposed I am to do God’s work He may becalling me for? How can I make myself available as to say with confidence like Samuel, “Speak Lord your servant is listening”.READ MORE
Today we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord that our Lord Jesus Christ humbled Himself to receive baptism from John theBaptist. This great act of humility demonstrates Jesus teaching that the way to reach God is through act of humility. What isthe significance of Jesus baptism since He has no sin? Jesus by His Baptism sanctifies the waters of Baptism, making everywater for baptism purified or wholesome. Secondly to identify with sinners whom he has come to save. Jesus puts Himself insolidarity with the crowd and sinful humanity whom He has come to redeem. According to Fulton Sheen “The object of HisBaptism was the same as the object of His birth, namely to identify Himself with the sinful humanity. If He was to be identifiedwith humanity, so much so as to call Himself the son of Man then He had to share the guilt of humanity.” He was expressingHis relationship to His people, on whose behalf He has been sent. The baptism of the Jordan was a prelude to the baptism ofwhich He would later speak, the baptism of His passion. In the waters of the Jordan He was identified with sinners, in thewaters of His death, He would bear the full burden of their guilt.READ MORE
Today, being the feast of Epiphany, we celebrate Jesus, the incarnate word being revealed to all the nations of the world. TheChurch calls it, the feast of appearance or manifestation of the Lord. Epiphany comes from the Greek word and means“Manifestation”. The Church celebrates the light of God’s revelation of his Son as human in Jesus Christ. The story of themagi is the story of the ways in which God reveals Himself to us and even more about the different responses and reactionsthis revelation receives. The Lord of the universe who reveals the star of Bethlehem to the Gentiles of the East gives each oneof us the same light of revelation to recognize and accept Jesus as Our Lord and Savior.READ MORE
My dear beloved people of God,
It is Sunday! I bring you a message of great joy and hope. Jesus the Christ is Risen. Happy Easter and congratulations on the best Lent ever! Yes, the best Lenten discipline ever exercised in the body of Christ the church. Forced by the adjustments we all had to make due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we saw ourselves giving up much more than we anticipated at the beginning of Lent.
Consider how the disciples of Jesus were grief-stricken witnessing the Crucifixion of Jesus over 2000 years ago. The events still have the same effects on us today, the new disciples of Jesus. The Gospel of Mark records Jesus' agony My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? (15:34). In the midst of the suffering of God the Son, God the Father was silent. At Easter, God the Father, spoke eloquently and powerfully. He did not only raised his Son from the dead, but placed him at his right hand where he placed dominion and powers under his feet. Easter is an invitation to Faith; faith that Jesus who died on Good Friday, still lives on.READ MORE
At many moments of our lives, especially when we have to put up with suffering and unexpected sickness like our world Coronavirus, we feel that we are not self-sufficient. In such cases, modern people go to a psychiatrist, a marriage counselor, or a lawyer for guidance and advice. Where does God, visible in Jesus Christ, fit in your schedule? God's advice and wisdom is available in the words and example of the Lord Jesus.
The writers of the New Testament were concerned to bring out who the Risen Christ is and how we are related to Him. This Sunday we are invited to see the Lord as both the gate of a sheepfold, through which we should enter in security, healing and our shepherd, whom we should follow.READ MORE
Indeed, our hearts are still filled with Easter joy as we continue to celebrate the victory of the Cross and Resurrection. The victory of life over death, of good over evil, of the Father of mercies over the father of lies.
The tradition of celebrating the Sunday after Easter as Divine Mercy Sunday was started by St. John Paul II, who was inspired by the visions of St. Faustina. We are all familiar with the image of Jesus that St. Faustina had painted. The painting shows Jesus with the rays of light flowing from out of His wounded side, like the blood and water that flowed from His heart on the Cross. This is what calls for our celebration today. Little wonder the readings for the feast are carefully selected to tell us more about God's mercy, the necessity for trusting Faith and the need for the forgiveness of sins.READ MORE
Dear Parish Family,
Jesus' total victory over all sin and death is won today in His Resurrection. He defeated these enemies by looking them straight in the eye as He took them on in a battle for our lives. Jesus humbled Himself in our humanity and accepted death on a cross in order to conquer all death. Because of this ,God raised Him from the dead to new and eternal life. His Resurrection is our victory over the enemy of death.
There is a strong tendency in our culture to avoid dealing with death. We want to see the resurrection as God's easy answer to the problem of death. It is God's answer, but not an easy answer. At this time the human family is doing battle with a new and dangerous virus. The danger is that this virus can lead to death.READ MORE
Dear Parish Family,
Baby Jesus has come to you. He had you in mind when he created the world and when he made a promise to Abraham, Jacob, Moses and David. He was born for you and carried his cross for you. He prepared a way for you on the day of his resurrection and on the day of his ascension. He prepared a place for you on the day he entrusted the keys of the kingdom of heaven to Peter and the Apostles, and also on the day of Pentecost, the birthday of his Church. All of this from the beginning of time until today is for you. Jesus is born for you.
This is an important truth that can be easily lost. While Jesus surely came to save the whole human family, he also came for your own family. In our own human limitations, we often find ourselves anonymous in a large crowd, and we can get used to this kind of thinking. But, none of us is anonymous to God. He knows you intimately and completely as if you were the only family in the world. God’s attention is not distracted away from us by other people. He sees and knows and loves us for who we are, and he came to love us into the family that he intended from the beginning.
My prayer for your family this Christmas is that Jesus, who is born for you, will live in your home, talk with you, eat with you, work with you, and rest with you. I pray that you let him be born into your hearts without hesitation. I pray that he truly dwells in your home so that you may one day dwell in his home forever.
Today is the Fourth Sunday of Advent and few days from now we celebrate the anniversary of the birth of Christ, the Nativity. The liturgy invites us to bow in reverence to that great event, worshipping God who was made flesh to bring us to glory. Yes, today's liturgy is all about God with us, the Emmanuel and this takes us to the moment of the celebration of God’s presence within the human family.
Nothing can be said about this more than the fact that the Emmanuel of Advent-Christmas, the God who is with us, witnesses our social life from within the community, so that God is not far away but is actually among us as we become part of each others lives. In all of these, Mary remains the center of attraction. We all get deeply captivated by what she was subjected to go through in order for God to achieve this and her courage to respond positively and with deep faith and trust in the same God that has designed everything for her.READ MORE
We remind ourselves again that Advent marks the four-week celebration before Christmas. We have also come to know that traditionally it is a season of penance and preparation before Christmas. The official Church liturgical color is purple, a symbol of penitence. As part of expressing our contrition, weddings used to be forbidden during this season – as also during Lent.
However the Third Sunday is Gaudete Sunday, from the Latin word for "rejoice." The central message is comfort and joy (gaudete means rejoice), and the readings are always carefully selected to give reason for our rejoicing. Before on this day, everyone took a break from the penitential theme and pink vestments, altar cloths, and candles were allowed in the Church for a little celebration to establish the fact that God is about to fulfill his promise.READ MORE
It is Advent Season! In the next four weeks we look forward, waiting in hope. We try within these weeks to understand what actually to wait and hope for.
To get the meaning of this season correctly, we must ask these relevant and important questions: what are we preparing for? What are we looking or hoping for? Are we looking for a miracle? If we are waiting for Christ to be born, Christ was already born more than two thousand years ago. He is our Savior and our brother too. If we are waiting for the Holy Spirit to dwell among us, He is already in us but we do not recognize His presence and role in our lives. If we are waiting for the Church to be born, the Church is already in our midst. If we are waiting for the faith, God gives everything to us. What are we waiting for then?READ MORE