Saturday, 12 November 2016 : 32nd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Josaphat, Bishop and Martyr (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Red
Luke 18 : 1-8

At that time, Jesus told His disciples a parable, to show them that they should pray continually, and not lose heart. He said, “In a certain town there was a judge, who neither feared God nor people. In the same town there was a widow, who kept coming to him, saying, ‘Defend my rights against my opponent!'”

“For a time he refused, but finally he thought, ‘Even though I neither fear God nor care about people, this widow bothers me so much, I will see that she gets justice; then she will stop coming and wearing me out.'”

And Jesus said, “Listen to what the evil judge says. Will God not do justice for His chosen ones, who cry to Him day and night, even if He delays in answering them? I tell you, He will speedily do them justice. But, when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on earth?”

Saturday, 12 November 2016 : 32nd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Josaphat, Bishop and Martyr (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Red
Psalm 111 : 1-2, 3-4, 5-6

Alleluia! Blessed is the one who fears the Lord, who greatly delights in His commands. His children will be powerful on earth; the upright’s offspring will be blessed.

Wealth and riches are for his family, there his integrity will remain. He is for the righteous a light in darkness, he is kind, merciful and upright.

It will be well with him who lends freely, who leads a life of justice and honesty. For the righteous will never be moved; he will be remembered and loved forever.

Saturday, 12 November 2016 : 32nd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Josaphat, Bishop and Martyr (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Red
3 John 5-8

Beloved, you do well to care for the brothers and sisters as you do. I mean those coming from other places. They spoke of your charity before the assembled Church. It will be well to provide them with what they need to continue their journey, as if you did it for God.

In reality, they have set out on the road for His Name without accepting anything from the pagans. We should receive such persons, making ourselves their cooperators in the work of the truth.

Friday, 11 November 2016 : 32nd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Martin of Tours, Bishop (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we listened to the words of the Lord in the Sacred Scriptures speaking to us all about obedience to His commandments and laws, as St. John in his Epistle made it clear that as Christians all of us ought to obey His laws and commandments, that is the commandments of love. Ever since God revealed His laws through Moses to His people, the first Ten Commandments, we have known ever since what is the Lord’s ways.

And this is what we are expected to do as Christians, as those who belong to the Lord. If God is love, then should our actions as His children not be love as well? If we truly say that we belong to Him, then should we not then do as He had wanted us to do? Should we not show care and concern for the weak, the poor, those who are suffering and dying, those who are unloved and rejected by others?

In the Gospel today, our Lord warned His disciples about the coming of the day of judgment, when the Lord was about to come to deliver His people from the hands of this wicked world, and which in the Gospel today He mentioned how the righteous ones would be snatched away, and those who are unworthy of the Lord would be left behind.

And as Jesus our Lord had mentioned several times in the Gospel today, the coming of the Lord, His second coming into this world will come suddenly and totally unexpected by us, like a thief entering and breaking into the house without anyone noticing him. When we realise what had happened, by then, everything will be already too late for us if we have not even started yet.

What is it that we need to start to do, brothers and sisters in Christ? It is that we Christians should begin acting as Christians should, and we as the followers and servants of our Lord should walk the talk, doing what the Lord asked us to do, and acting in the ways that our faith had prescribed rather than just showing empty gestures and obedience without substance.

Many Christians today are lukewarm in their faith, and many even are Christians on paper only. They call themselves as Christians, and yet by looking at their actions, the kind of wickedness they had done in life, and how they treated one another badly, we can truly be ashamed to have them numbered among us Christians. However, this is where we really need to help one another and work together in order that we may all find our way to the Lord and to His salvation.

And perhaps by following the examples of today’s saint, St. Martin of Tours, we can know better how to live as a Christian. St. Martin of Tours was the Bishop of Tours renowned for his holiness, great works and devotion to God and His people, but earlier in his life he was actually a member of the Roman military forces, and was a convert to the faith against the wishes of his own family.

He served as a member of the cavalry forces and eventually became one of its commanders. It was told that he resigned from the military in order to pursue his calling to serve the Lord, as due to his works in the military, dealing with killing and violence, he was not able to fully commit himself to the way of the Lord. It was told that on one occasion, he encountered the Lord Jesus Himself Who was disguised as an old man suffering naked in a cold and wintry night.

And in that occasion, it was told that St. Martin of Tours cut off half of his army centurion’s cloak and use that cloth to cover the old man. Later on, the Lord would appear to St. Martin of Tours in a vision, showing him that the old man was truly the Lord in disguise, and He praised him for what he had done. And this would encourage and strengthen his own conviction to serve the Lord and His people with zeal and devotion.

And that was exactly what he had done as the shepherd of God’s people, caring for them and for their spiritual growth, guiding them towards the Lord and helping them to resist against heresies and false teachings. And the faithful had greatly benefitted from all of them. Therefore, all of us are also called to serve the Lord in the same manner, devoting ourselves to real actions and commitment, caring for those less fortunate among us and help our struggling brethren in their faith.

May the Lord help us all, and by the inspiration of St. Martin of Tours, his life and his works, may we all who belong to the Church will be able to work together for the sake of the salvation of souls, and through us, may the love of our Lord be made evident and manifest in this world. God bless us all. Amen.