Friday, 4 June 2021 : 9th 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 called to reflect on the most amazing and wonderful love of God which He has expressed from time to time again, by giving us His love as evident in the readings we have just heard. In our first reading today, we have the story of how Tobit was healed by God through His Archangel Raphael, concluding the amazing story of God’s providence to His servants in their hour of need. Then in the Gospel, we heard of the revelation that Jesus made to the people gathered, how He was indeed the Messiah, the Son and Heir of David, as promised and prophesied.

In our first reading, Tobit was one of the Israelites who had been brought into exile by the Assyrians who destroyed the northern kingdom of Israel, its cities and brought most of its people into exile. He was righteous and God-fearing, and an accident caused him to lose his eyesight. Nonetheless, he remained firm in his faith and never lost hope. He prayed to the Lord and the Lord heard his prayers and remembered his virtues and charitable actions to his fellow brothers and sisters, and thus, God sent Archangel Raphael to assist Tobit and to heal him from his blindness.

After helping Sara, the wife of Tobit’s son, Tobias, freeing her from the influence of a powerful demon, the Archangel Raphael then administered God’s healing for Tobit, opening his eyes and allowing him to see once again after what must have been quite some time. His sight restored and his energy restored, Tobit became whole once again, by the grace of God. Tobit and his whole household henceforth praised and glorified the Lord for all of His wonderful deeds, for His love and His faithfulness to the Covenant that He had made with His people.

What we heard in our Gospel then is an even more powerful reminder for us of God’s love, for that time, God sent not just one of the Archangels, but His own Begotten Son, the One and only promised Saviour of the world, that by His entry into this world, He has brought healing and salvation to us all. He is the fulfilment of all the prophecies and all the promises of God made through His messengers and prophets. And through Christ, all of us have been healed and made whole, the veil of darkness and the power of sin had been lifted up and away from all of us.

Now, brothers and sisters in Christ, having been reminded as such of God’s generous love and kindness, have we realised and appreciated just how fortunate all of us are to have been beloved in such a manner by God? We are mere sinners, weak and unworthy, wicked and terrible, corrupted and dirty, and yet, God willingly embraced us, sought us and wanted us all to be healed, made whole and rejuvenated, reconciled fully and completely with Him.

That is exactly just how beloved and how fortunate all of us are, and many of us unfortunately still do not yet recognise this fact and reality. And we continue to disregard the Lord and His generous love for us. We focus on ourselves and our worldly desires, and we turn away from God’s truth and way, following our own selfish desires and wants, our ambition and pride. Today we are all called to discern carefully our path going forward in life, that we do not end up in the wrong path.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all seek the Lord therefore with renewed faith and conviction, and let us all turn towards Him with new dedication. We are all called to be genuine in how we live our lives, full of Christian charity and faith. Because God has loved us so much then it is only right and just that we also love Him and dedicate ourselves to Him. It is a constant reminder for us that we must not be idle or ignorant of our Christian faith and calling. As much as we are able to, in every opportunity, we should show good examples in our actions in life.

Let us ask the Lord for strength and courage, that we may persevere in being faithful and good throughout life. May all of us draw ever closer to the Lord and commit ourselves wholeheartedly to Him, and may all of us grow ever stronger in our Christian faith and commitment. May God bless us all and our many works, and may He remain with us always, through every moments of our lives. Amen.

Friday, 4 June 2021 : 9th Week of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Mark 12 : 35-37

At that time, as Jesus was teaching in the Temple, He said, “The teachers of the Law say that the Messiah is the Son of David. How can that be? For David himself, inspired by the Holy Spirit, declared : The Lord said to my Lord, ‘Sit at My right hand, until I put Your enemies under Your feet!'”

“If David himself calls Him Lord, in what way can He be his Son?” Many people came to Jesus, and listened to Him gladly.

Friday, 4 June 2021 : 9th Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 145 : 1-2, 6c-7, 8-9a, 9bc-10

Alleluia! Praise the Lord, my soul! I will sing to the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to God while I live.

The Lord is forever faithful; He gives justice to the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The Lord sets the prisoners free.

The Lord gives sight to the blind, the Lord straightens the bent. The Lord loves the virtuous, but He brings to ruin the way of the wicked. The Lord protects the stranger.

He sustains the widow and the orphan. The Lord will reign forever, your God, o Zion, from generation to generation. Alleluia!

Friday, 4 June 2021 : 9th Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Tobit 11 : 5-17

Now Anna was sitting there, scanning the road along which her son should return. She saw Tobias and Raphael coming in the distance and said to the father of Tobias, “Your son is coming with the man who accompanied him.”

While Tobias and Raphael were still going along the road, Raphael said to Tobias, “I am sure that your father will regain his sight. Rub his eyes with the fish gall and when he feels his eyes itching, he will rub them and the film will come away like scales from his eyes. He will regain his sight and see the light.”

Anna ran to meet Tobias and threw her arms around his neck saying, “At last I have seen you again, my child. Now I can die!” And both of them began to cry. Tobit also got up and, stumbling, arrived at the door of the courtyard. Tobias ran to him with the fish gall in his hand. He breathed on his father’s eyes, embraced him and said, “Father, have confidence!”

Then he spread the fish gall on Tobit’s eyes. Tobias waited. When his eyes began to itch, Tobit rubbed them and with both hands scaled off the film from the corners of his eyes. When Tobit saw his son he threw his arms around Tobias’ neck and began to weep. He said, “Blessed be You, o God. Blessed be Your Name forever. Blessed be Your holy Angels. You have punished me, but You have taken pity on me, and now I can see my son, Tobias.”

Tobias was very happy. After entering the house he told his father about the important things that had happened in Media. He told his father about the successful outcome of his journey, how he got his money, and how he married Sara, daughter of Ragouel, who just then was approaching the gates of Nineveh.

Tobit, happy and praising God, went out to meet his daughter-in-law at the gates of Nineveh. All those who saw him walking alone and unaided, were amazed that he could see. Tobit proclaimed to them that God had taken pity on him and cured him. Then he went to Sara and blessed her saying, “Welcome, daughter! May God be blessed for having brought you to us and may your father and mother also be blessed.”

It was a day of great rejoicing for all Tobit’s relatives who lived in Nineveh.