Saturday, 11 September 2021 : 23rd Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green or White (Saturday Mass of Our Lady)

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day as we listened to the words of the Scripture, hearing the Word of God, we are all reminded to stay true to our faith in God, to believe in Him in all of our lives and committing ourselves to Him in every possible opportunities. We have to be sincere in following God and not just show outwardly our faith and dedication, but rather we must have the right internal orientation and disposition towards God, with a heart that is filled with overflowing love for the Lord.

This is what all of us ought to do as Christians, as those who have been called by God and accepted His call to be His people and dedicated ourselves to be His disciples and witnesses in our communities in these days. We have been entrusted by the Lord with the mission to reach out to those who have not yet known Him and those who have not yet found their way to Him, by showing them the example of true Christian faith and devotion. We should be those who show genuine faith in God in all things, so that who see us and witness our works know that we belong to God.

In our first reading today, from the Epistle of St. Paul to St. Timothy, the Apostle St. Paul in the letter he addressed to his godson, St. Timothy showed his great love and dedication to the Lord, which was the reason why he dedicated himself in such a manner to the Lord, spending much effort and time to reach out to the people of God in various places and communities, in spreading the truth and the word of God to them, and he encouraged St. Timothy in that letter, as he also did with his many other letters to the various communities he had visited.

In our Gospel passage today, the Lord Jesus spoke to the people regarding how one ought to follow the Lord and believe in Him as His followers. The Lord reminded the people that they should establish their faith on a firm foundation, based on true love for God and on genuine desire to serve Him and with full understanding of the teachings and ways of the Lord rather than just being outwardly pious and faithful, and yet inside us, we have no true faith and love for God, as how hypocrites have professed their faith and lived their lives.

The Lord stressed to them all that they had to do as they had believed, and act in ways that are according to their faith. Unless they do this, their faith is empty and founded on shaky foundations, as highlighted by the Lord through the well-known parable of the foundations. In that parable, the Lord compared those who had not done as they had believed, or were hypocritical in their faith, as those who built their houses on shaky foundation of sand.

Meanwhile, those who truly loved the Lord and acted upon the faith which they had professed in the Lord are those who built their houses on rock solid foundation, one that will not be easily harmed or affected by the coming waves or winds, and will remain strong and sturdy throughout the test of time. This represents the faith of all those who held firmly to the Lord and His truth, and not only showing their faith by appearances, but through every actions and deeds, in even the smallest things they do in life.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, this is what we are all called to do as Christians, to dedicate ourselves with love and to follow the Lord with all of our strength, to give our time and effort to glorify the Lord. We are all called to live our lives with true faith in our every actions, and commit ourselves by doing whatever we can to practice our faith in our everyday actions, even in the smallest of things, so that we may not just be believers who have empty and meaningless faith, but that we may have faith which is truly genuine and living.

Are we able to commit ourselves to the Lord in this manner, brothers and sisters in Christ? Are we willing to follow in the footsteps of our holy predecessors, so that we may ourselves be great role models and sources of inspiration for others? Are we capable of dedicating ourselves to the Lord and establishing for ourselves this firm foundation of our faith? Let us all ponder these things carefully and discern in what way we may contribute ever more to our efforts in being faithful Christians in our world today.

May the Lord continue to guide us and watch over us in our journey, that we may persevere through the challenges and trials of life, and that we may be more willing and courageous to take up the crosses of our calling and mission in life, to lead others to God and to help many more people to know the Lord, by showing them His truth and love through our own exemplary life, just as St. Paul and the innumerable other saints had done with theirs. May God bless us all, in our every good works, efforts and endeavours, now and always. Amen.

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