Tuesday, 27 October 2020 : 30th Week of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Luke 13 : 18-21

At that time, Jesus continued speaking, “What is the kingdom of God like? What shall I compare it to? Imagine a person who has taken a mustard seed, and planted it in his garden. The seed has grown, and become like a small tree, so that the birds of the air shelter in its branches.”

And Jesus said again, “What is the kingdom of God like? Imagine a woman who has taken yeast, and hidden it in three measures of flour, until it is all leavened.”

Tuesday, 27 October 2020 : 30th Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 127 : 1-2, 3, 4-5

Blessed are you who fear the Lord and walk in His ways. You will eat the fruit of your toil; you will be blessed and favoured.

Your wife, like a vine, will bear fruits in your home; your children, like olive shoots will stand around your table.

Such are the blessings bestowed upon the man who fears the Lord. May the Lord bless you from Zion. May you see Jerusalem prosperous all the days of your life.

Tuesday, 27 October 2020 : 30th Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Ephesians 5 : 21-33

Let all kinds of submission to one another become obedience to Christ. So wives to their husbands : as to the Lord. The husband is the head of his wife, as Christ is the Head of the Church, His Body, of Whom He is also the Saviour. And as the Church submits to Christ, so let a wife submit in everything to her husband.

As for you, husbands, love your wives as Christ loved the Church and gave Himself up for her. He washed her and made her holy by baptism in the Word. As He wanted a radiant Church without stain or wrinkle or any blemish, but holy and blameless, He Himself had to prepare and present her to Himself.

In the same way, husbands should love their wives as they love their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. And no one has ever hated his body; he feeds and takes care of it. This is just what Christ does for the Church, because we are members of His Body.

Scripture says : Because of this a man shall leave his father and mother to be united with his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. This is a very great mystery, and I refer to Christ and the Church. As for you, let each one love his wife as himself, and let the wife respect her husband.

Monday, 26 October 2020 : 30th Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today as we listened to the words of the Scripture we are presented with the reminder for us to be genuine Christians in our lives, and not to be hypocrites and lukewarm in living as Christians. The Lord has called all of us to be fully committed and be filled with love for Him and our fellow men, in each and every moments of our lives.

In our first reading today, taken from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Church and the faithful in Ephesus, we heard the Apostle reminding the faithful in that city to keep their Christian faith and dedicate themselves to the Lord and His path, that they should always put God before anything else, and strive to follow the Lord’s path in their livelihood and actions.

St. Paul reminded the people there to keep themselves away from all sorts of impurities and sins, all wickedness and evils, all negative thoughts and actions that lead to sin. He told them to be exemplary in all of their actions, be it in small or significant things that they truly became faithful and genuine witnesses of their Christian faith before everyone else. Otherwise, they were no better than hypocrites.

In our Gospel today, we heard about the confrontation between the Lord Jesus and the Pharisees, who saw the Lord healing a woman who had been crippled for eighteen years, a very long time indeed. And the Lord healed her even though it was plainly in the sight of all and on the day of the Sabbath. We may think that there is no issue with this at all, as after all the Lord was doing great things for God’s glory.

However, to the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law, mentioned as the rulers of the Synagogues, at that time, what the Lord has done was an aberration and travesty, tantamount to blasphemy and committing evil deeds, as they believed that the Sabbath day is a day when no activity of all sorts were allowed, regardless of the type of action and the circumstances and intentions behind them.

They rigidly interpreted and enforced the Law, that even as the Lord showed love and mercy to the suffering woman, they grumbled and were unhappy seeing what He has done before them and the people. They would rather that the woman suffered longer than to be flexible in their enforcement and application of the Law. Their insistence in enforcing strictly the laws of Moses showed how they failed to understand and appreciate their faith properly.

The Law of God, as the Lord made it very clear, is not meant to oppress or make the people to suffer. The Law of God is meant for the people to rediscover their love and devotion to God, to remind them of the necessary things for them to do, in order to direct their effort and attention on God. Through the Law, including the Law regulating the Sabbath, God wants us all to keep and devote some time, reminding us that He is the chief priority of our lives.

That is why, the Sabbath was meant for keeping a sacred and special time for the people that they might spend it with God and keep themselves from all the distractions and the temptations that the world usually brought to them. Instead, the people ended up focusing on the wrong things, focusing excessively on the minute details, on how each observances of the Sabbath could be done, rather than focusing on the intention of the Law.

Through His healing of the woman suffering for such a long time, the Lord in fact wanted to show them His wonderful love. He wanted us to recognise this love and learn to love Him more and more. And how do we do this, brothers and sisters? It is by living righteously and virtuously in accordance to His Law, dedicating ourselves, our time, attention and effort on Him.

May the Lord help each and every one of us to remain more faithful to Him, and may He bless each and every one of us in our every good endeavours from now on. May God bless us all at all times, and guide us in the journey of life. May God be with us, now and always. Amen.

Monday, 26 October 2020 : 30th Week of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Luke 13 : 10-17

At that time, Jesus was teaching in a synagogue on the Sabbath, and a crippled woman was there. An evil spirit had kept her bent for eighteen years, so that she could not straighten up at all. On seeing her, Jesus called her and said, “Woman, you are freed from your infirmity.” Then He laid His hands upon her, and immediately she was made straight and praised God.

But the ruler of the synagogue was indignant, because Jesus had performed this healing on the Sabbath day, and he said to the people, “There are six days in which to work. Come on those days to be healed, and not on the Sabbath!”

But the Lord replied, “You hypocrites! Everyone of you unties his ox or his donkey on the Sabbath, and leads it out of the barn to give it water. And here you have a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan had bound for eighteen years. Should she not be freed from her bonds on the Sabbath?”

When Jesus said this, all His opponents felt ashamed. But the people rejoiced at the many wonderful things that happened because of Him.