Tuesday, 3 April 2018 : Tuesday within Easter Octave (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we continue to hear the testimony of St. Peter the Apostle, who spoke to the multitudes of people gathered in Jerusalem, about the Lord Jesus Christ, Saviour of all mankind, by Whose death and resurrection He had given all of us a new hope of being saved and being liberated from the tyranny of sin.

Then in the Gospel, we heard about the Lord Who appeared to Mary Magdalene, one of His closest disciples, right after He was risen from the dead. Mary was distraught and sorrowful, thinking that someone had indeed stolen the body of the Lord, but the Lord appeared to her and showed her the truth, how He has conquered death, and by appearing to her in the flesh, He proved that He has indeed truly risen from the dead.

Whatever St. Peter and St. Mary Magdalene has witnessed, of the Lord Who fulfilled all of His words and promises, was based on true witness and true senses, as the disciples saw with their own eyes, heard with their own ears, and touched with their own hands and limbs, the Lord resurrected from the dead, in the Body and in His real presence. He was not a mere Spirit or Ghost, but present again amongst them in Body, until the day when He ascended into heaven.

And that is why the Apostles and the disciples were so courageous and so devoted in spreading the truth and their witness of the Resurrection. Had the resurrection of the Lord been a lie, as propagated by the chief priests and the Pharisees, who tried to prevent the truth from going out to the public, the disciples would not have done what they have done, even risking suffering and martyrdom for the sake of the Lord.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, although we have not seen the Lord risen in person, but we too believe in the Risen Christ. Why is that so? That is because the Apostles who witnessed to the truth, spoke up about the truth, and did not hide anything from those to whom they spoke. In that way, they passed on the faith they had to their successors, the bishops and priests of the Church, and from them, to all of us the faithful throughout the ages.

Now, we are called to the same calling and to the same ministry as the Lord has given to His Apostles and disciples. All of us who have received the sacrament of holy baptism and therefore become a member of the Church are called to be witnesses of the Lord’s life, work, death and resurrection that is to speak the same truth as the Apostles and the disciples of Christ had spoken.

This is what each and every one of us as a baptised Christian have to do. It does not mean that we should go to the streets and preach about the Lord’s Good News, as indeed, we can speak directly of His truth to others just as St. Peter had done, but more importantly, have we embodied our faith in our own respective lives? Have we lived our lives filled with actions that truly mark us all as people worthy of God’s grace and love?

Let us all make this to be our Easter commitment and resolution, to be ever better Christians, devoting our time and effort to be the Lord’s faithful and hardworking servants, that through us and our works, we may bring more and more souls closer to God’s redeeming grace. As such, more and more people will come to receive God’s salvation and more souls will be saved from the threat of eternal damnation in hell.

May the Lord be with us all, that we may be ever more courageous in our faith, so that we will always persevere through the challenges we may face if we continue to be faithful Christians, devoted to the Lord our God. Amen.

Tuesday, 3 April 2018 : Tuesday within Easter Octave (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

John 20 : 11-18

At that time, Mary stood weeping outside the tomb; and as she wept, she bent down to look inside. She saw two Angels in white, sitting where the Body of Jesus had been, one at the head, and the other at the feet. They said, “Woman, why are you weeping?”

She answered, “Because they have taken my Lord and I do not know where they have put Him.” As she said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not recognise Him. Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Who are you looking for?”

She thought it was the gardener and answered Him, “Lord, if You have taken Him away, tell me where You have put Him, and I will go and remove Him.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned, and said to Him, “Rabboni!” – which means Master. Jesus said to her, “Do not touch Me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to My brothers and say to them : I am ascending to My Father, Who is your Father, to My God, Who is your God.”

So Mary of Magdala went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord, and this is what He said to me.”

Tuesday, 3 April 2018 : Tuesday within Easter Octave (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : White

Psalm 32 : 4-5, 18-19, 20 and 22

For upright is the Lord’s word and worthy of trust is His work. The Lord loves justice and righteousness; the earth is full of His kindness.

But the Lord’s eyes are upon those who fear Him, upon those who trust in His loving-kindness to deliver them from death and preserve them from famine.

In hope we wait for the Lord for He is our help and our shield. O Lord, let Your love rest upon us, even as our hope rests in You.

Tuesday, 3 April 2018 : Tuesday within Easter Octave (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Acts 2 : 36-41

Peter said, “Let Israel then know for sure that God has made Lord and Christ this Jesus Whom you crucified.” When they heard this, they were deeply troubled. And they asked Peter and the other Apostles, “What shall we do, brothers?”

Peter answered : “Each of you must repent and be baptised in the Name of Jesus Christ, so that your sins may be forgiven. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise of God was made to you and your children, and to all those from afar whom our God may call.”

With many other words Peter gave the message and appealed to them saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” So those who accepted his word were baptised; some three thousand persons were added to their numbers that day.