Monday, 13 May 2019 : 4th Week of Easter, Memorial of Our Lady of Fatima (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we celebrate the occasion of the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, celebrated every thirteenth day of the month of May, marking the moment when Our Blessed Mother Mary appeared at Fatima in Portugal to three young shepherd children, bringing forth with her the message intended for mankind, for the salvation and liberation of man through God.

Mary is calling all of us to follow her Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, to repent from our sinful ways and from our wicked actions in life. She appeared several times over the few months in that same year before the three children, showing them visions of hell, and the warning of what would happen should mankind continue to live in sin. She gave the prophecies of what would happen, the suffering of many throughout the past century, due to the persecution of the Church and the faithful.

And today, we celebrate Mary, Our Lady of Fatima and remember her intense love for each one of us, that she appeared and showed her care and concern for us, as unless we make a change and difference in our lives, we will be lost forever to her Son, and to her as well. And God has entrusted us all to her, as her own children, just as He entrusted her to us as our own Mother. Which mother will not care for the well-being of her own children or be concerned about them?

That is why today, as we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, all of us are reminded to reflect on our lives and to think about how we have lived out our lives all these while. Have we been truly acting in a most Christian way in our daily living or have we instead been following the ways of the world all these while? We are challenged by the Lord to follow the good examples which His own mother Mary has shown us.

For Mary is the perfect disciple, one who has attuned herself so completely to the will of God, obediently following the will of God and submitting herself so perfectly, that she became the role model for each and every one of us Christians. She is so honoured and well-praised precisely because of her commitment to God, her devotion to do what God has willed and not of her own selfish desires in life.

That is why we are often so attached to Mary, for she is not just our Mother, but someone whom we can truly look up to in our daily living, as the example and the guiding light by which we can find our way towards God. And that is what we perhaps need to reflect today, as we continue to live our lives in this world. We should heed our loving Mother’s call and encouragement for us to turn away from sinful ways and to embrace wholeheartedly her ways, imitating her love and commitment for God in our own lives.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, as we continue to embark through this holy and blessed season of Easter, let us all draw ever closer to God, through His mother Mary, our role model, intercessor and our loving Mother, who has appeared so many times in the past centuries, calling on all of us her children to turn towards her Son in a new faith and in a new life that is no longer subjugated by sin.

Let us all be role model ourselves, in how we live up to our lives, filled with faith and commitment to love and serve the Lord with all of our might. Let us all devote ourselves, our time and attention towards Him, and let us all be ever more committed, day after day, to be His true disciples and to be more like His mother Mary, that others may come to believe in Him also, through our role model and examples. May God be with us always in these endeavours. Amen.

Monday, 13 May 2019 : 4th Week of Easter, Memorial of Our Lady of Fatima (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

John 10 : 1-10

At that time, Jesus said to His disciples, “Truly, I say to you, anyone who does not enter the sheepfold by the gate, but climbs in some other way, is a thief and a robber. But the shepherd of the sheep enters by the gate. The keeper opens the gate to him and the sheep hear his voice; he calls each of his sheep by name and leads them out.”

“When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him for they know his voice. A stranger they will not follow, but rather they will run away from him, because they do not recognise a stranger’s voice.” Jesus used this comparison, but they did not understand what He was saying to them.

So Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, I am the Gate of the sheep. All who came were thieves and robbers, and the sheep did not hear them. I am the Gate. Whoever enters through Me will be saved; he will go in and out freely and find food. The thief comes to steal and kill and destroy, but I have come that they may have life, life in all its fullness.”

Alternative reading (Mass of Our Lady of Fatima)

Luke 11 : 27-28

At that time, as Jesus was speaking, a woman spoke from the crowd and said to Him, “Blessed is the one who gave You birth and nursed You!”

Jesus replied, “Truly blessed are those who hear the word of God, and keep it as well.”

Monday, 13 May 2019 : 4th Week of Easter, Memorial of Our Lady of Fatima (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : White

Psalm 41 : 2-3 and Psalm 42 : 3, 4

As a deer longs for flowing streams, so my soul longs for You, o God.

My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I go and see the face of God?

Send forth Your light and Your truth; let them be my guide, let them take me to Your holy mountain, to the place where You reside.

Then will I go to the Altar of God, to God, my gladness and delight. I will praise You with the lyre an harp, o God, my God.

Alternative reading (Mass of Our Lady of Fatima)

Psalm 44 : 11-12, 14-15, 16-17

Listen, o daughter, pay attention; forget your father’s house and your nation, and your beauty will charm the King, for He is your Lord.

All glorious as she enters is the princess in her gold-woven robes. She is led in royal attire to the King, following behind is her train of virgins.

Amid cheers and general rejoicing, they enter the palace of the King. Forget your fathers and think of your sons, you will make them princes throughout the land.

Monday, 13 May 2019 : 4th Week of Easter, Memorial of Our Lady of Fatima (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Acts 11 : 1-18

News came to the Apostles and the brothers and sisters in Judea that even foreigners had received the Word of God. So, when Peter went up to Jerusalem, these Jewish believers began to argue with him, “You went to the home of uncircumcised people and ate with them!”

So Peter began to give them the facts as they had happened, “I was at prayer in the city of Joppa when, in a trance, I saw a vision. Something like a large sheet came down from the sky and drew near to me, landing on the ground by its four corners. As I stared at it, I saw four-legged creatures of the earth, wild beasts and reptiles, and birds of the sky.”

“Then I heard a voice saying to me : ‘Get up, Peter, kill and eat!’ I replied, ‘Certainly not, Lord! No common or unclean creature has ever entered my mouth.’ A second time the voice from the heavens spoke, ‘What God has made clean, you must not call unclean.’ This happened three times, and then it was all drawn up into the sky. At that moment three men, who had been sent to me from Caesarea, arrived at the house where we were staying.”

“The Spirit instructed me to go with them without hesitation; so these six brothers came along with me and we entered into the man’s house. He told us how he had seen an Angel standing in his house and telling him : ‘Send someone to Joppa and fetch Simon, also known as Peter. He will bring you a message by which you and all your household will be saved.”

“I had begun to address them when suddenly the Holy Spirit came upon them, just as it had come upon us at the beginning. Then I remembered what the Lord had said : ‘John baptised with water, but you shall be baptised with the Holy Spirit.’ If, then, God had given them the same gift that He had given us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I to resist God?”

When they heard this they set their minds at rest and praised God saying, “Then God has granted life-giving repentance to the pagan nations as well.”

Alternative reading (Mass of Our Lady of Fatima)

Isaiah 61 : 9-11

Their descendants shall be known among the nations and their offspring among the peoples. All who see them will acknowledge that they are a race YHVH has blessed.

I rejoice greatly in YHVH, my soul exults for joy in my God, for He has clothed me in the garments of His salvation, He has covered me with the robe of His righteousness, like a bridegroom wearing a garland, like a bride adorned with jewels.

For as the earth brings forth its growth, and as a garden makes seeds spring up, so will the Lord YHVH make justice and praise spring up in the sight of all nations.