Thursday, 31 January 2019 : 3rd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. John Bosco, Priest (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we listened to the words from the Scripture telling us about the need for each and every one of us to be faithful to God, and to live out our lives with faith, and not with just empty gestures and superficial dedication. The Lord has given us many talents, abilities and blessings as gifts, and rightfully we are expected to make good use of them, for the benefit and for the good of all of God’s beloved children.

In the Gospel passage today, we heard about the short parable with which the Lord Jesus taught His disciples, with regards to the use of a light that ought to be placed on a lampstand and not to be hidden. This must be understood in the context of the importance of light for the people at that time, and even in our present day world. Light is very important because in a world where the absence of light is often feared and undesired because of the darkness and our inability to see or to experience things around us, light is truly a very important thing to have.

If light is covered up, then it becomes useless, as its light then cannot be seen by anyone. It is also senseless and meaningless for light to be hidden and not be seen by anyone. Therefore, when we heard the parable that the Lord mentioned about light, it was in fact a comparison to the talents, abilities and blessings that God has given to each and every one of us. Hiding up the light is essentially keeping our talents and abilities without using them for the benefit of men.

That is what the Lord told to the people, with the intention to remind them that each and every one of them have been given plenty of blessings, talents and abilities in order to be used for the benefit and good of one another, and yet, many of them have misused those gifts and blessings. Throughout history, we have seen many circumstances and occasions when there had been suffering because of the misuse of these talents and abilities.

In addition, there had been many occasions when the people were ignorant of the sufferings and difficulties faced by their peers around them. For example, in our world today, many people who are in need, poor and suffering, and at the same time, there are all those who are very rich and having abundant blessings and yet, did nothing to help those who were less fortunate. That is why there are so much injustice in this world today.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today each and every one of us are called to make use of the various gifts and blessings that we have been given, and share them with one another. That is what the Lord truly meant as He told His disciples the parable of the light, put on a lampstand to provide light to dispel the darkness that is present around us. We are called to do this, as part of what God had commanded us all to do.

Today, we celebrate the feast day of St. John Bosco, the saint well known for his dedication and hard work for the benefit of the poor and the less fortunate, in particular his work among the young boys and delinquents, who were gathered by the saint into a house where they could gain education and proper guidance with love and compassion. St. John Bosco showed love, care and compassion for those who need them the most and touched their lives.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today we are all called to follow the examples of St. John Bosco in his dedication in serving the people of God, his love for the poor, the needy and all those who need care and attention. Let us all share the love and the blessings that God has given us so generously, so that none of us will be left unloved and uncared for anymore. Let us turn our hearts and minds wholeheartedly to the Lord from now on.

May the Lord be with us always, and may He continue to lead and guide us down the right path, that in everything we say, do and act, we will always bring glory to God, and will love Him ever more, with each and every passing days. May God bless us all in everything, now and always. Amen.