Saturday, 1 March 2014 : 7th Week of Ordinary Time (Scripture Reflections)

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

Brothers and sisters in Christ, as we all know, that children are the greatest of the gifts of God to us. Children are the fruits of love, and they were born pure and innocent. Why are they then so great in their faith? That is because the faith of a child is the purest kind of faith, one that is unadulterated and untainted by the concerns and corruptions of this world.

The Lord Jesus showed His disciples, that if they reject these children, who came to Him in faith, that means they too also reject Him, because they failed to understand that their faith needs to be like these children’s faith. Faith is often clouded and hidden behind a thick cloud of darkness, that is the corruption of sin, and all the concerns of the world.

When we were all still a child, we do not have much worries and concerns. We do not have much things to think about, and like what many of us who have children will know, we understand that children wants just care, love and concern by their loved ones. They were innocent, pure, and if they believe in something, they truly believe in it.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, have our faith been like the faith of children? Or have our faith been muddled with the corruptions of the world? We have many good things in this world, all the pleasures and the joy that this world can offer. The wealth and prosperity which this world can give to us, if we follow the ways of the world.

But if we do so, then are we faithful to the ways of the Lord? The way of this world promotes excessiveness, it promotes self-indulgence and hedonistic lifestyle. It does not necessarily mean bad thing, but if we immerse ourselves too deeply with the concerns of this world, more likely than not, our faith will gradually wear down, and we will then prefer to walk on our own way.

We like to complain and be angry, especially at God, when we face difficulties in life. And we especially are angry with Him when we think that He had not heard us or abandoned us. We often question Him and His love for us, without realising that our every breath is the proof of God’s love and dedication for us.

When we pray and when we ask God for help, much of the time, we do not make those prayers in full sincerity. We pray because we need something, and we need that something be taken care of. Yet, we often fail to realise that prayer is mainly the means of communication between us and our Lord who loves us, so much that He wants to talk to us regularly and continuously. Yet, our stubbornness and lack of true faith prevent the Lord from speaking to us, and for us from listening to Him.

Brethren, this is how the Lord wanted to show us that we have many things we can learn from a child. In particular, we should be like a child in his or her faith. A child’s faith is pure, and untainted by human desires. While we are already tainted by the world and its desires, and by the power and influence of sin, what we can do, is to aspire towards having the faith of a child.

We should all aim to be faithful in the same way a child is faithful. We should unconditionally love and trust the Lord our God, without any hidden agenda or desires that keep us from having a pure faith in the Lord. If we are able to do that, then our lives will be more meaningful, because we will be firmly rooted in the Lord, and no matter what happened to us, we will always be strongly devoted to the Lord and His ways, and we will not be taken away from salvation due to us.

May the Lord therefore continue to foster in us, a strong love for Him, a constant and living faith, that we may persevere and indeed, grow further in our faith to Him. Let us also on our side, do our best to dedicate ourselves in love to the Lord and to His children, our own brothers and sisters. God be with us all. Amen.

Saturday, 1 March 2014 : 7th Week of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

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

Mark 10 : 13-16

People were bringing their little children to Jesus to have Him touch them, and the disciples rebuked them for this. When Jesus noticed it, He was very angry and said, “Let the children come to Me and do not stop them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”

“Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it.” Then He took the children in His arms and, laying His hands on them, blessed them.

Saturday, 1 March 2014 : 7th Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

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

Psalm 140 : 1-2, 3 and 8

Lord, I call on You, hasten to help me! Listen to my plea when I call to you. Let my prayer rise to You like incense, as I lift up my hands as in an evening sacrifice.

O Lord, set a guard at my mouth, keep watch at the gate of my lips. But my eyes are turned to You, o God, my Lord; strip me not of life, for You are my refuge.

Saturday, 1 March 2014 : 7th Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

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

James 5 : 13-20

Are any among you discouraged? They should pray. Are any of you happy? They should sing songs to God. If anyone is sick, let him call on the elders of the Church. They shall pray for him, anointing him with oil in the Name of the Lord.

The prayer said in faith will save the sick person; the Lord will raise him up and if he has committed any sins, he will be forgiven. There will be healing if you confess your sins to one another and pray for each other. The prayer of the upright man has great power, provided he perseveres.

Elijah was a human being like ourselves and when he prayed earnestly for it not to rain, no rain fell for three and a half years. Then he prayed again : the sky yielded rain and the earth produced its fruit.

Brothers, if any one of you strays far away from the truth and another person brings him back to it, be sure of this : he who brings back a sinner from the wrong way will save his soul from death and win forgiveness for many sins.