Thursday, 5 November 2020 : 31st Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today as we heard the words of the Lord through the Scriptures, we are all reminded of the supreme and amazing love of God that He has shown to each and every one of us. God does not abandon us when we are in need, when we are stranded alone in the darkness, but on the contrary, God will go the extra distance to look for us and find us through the darkness.

In our Gospel today, we heard the Lord using two parables to highlight His intent to His people, telling them the parables of the lost sheep and the lost coin to show how the Lord cared for all of His beloved creation, that He would go out of His way just to find that one lost sheep or the one lost coin, leaving everyone else that had already been saved and saving those who need to be saved.

Economically and logically, it is entirely pointless and even befuddling for the Lord to have done so. What was the point of putting effort to go out of one’s way just to get one lost sheep when you already had ninety-nine that were not lost in the first place? But the Lord does not act in ways that are economical or logical, brothers and sisters, as He acts with pure and genuine love towards us.

That was why He willingly looked for us, for those who had been lost to Him, that we may be found and not be lost again. The Lord knew full well what will happen to us if we are not found, and that is we will be lost forever to Him in eternal fire and darkness in hell. No matter how great our sins may have been, as long as it is not too late, the love that God has for each one of us does not permit Him to abandon us.

God Himself has thus laid down His life as He picked up His Cross, suffering for us and went through the most bitter ordeal of the crucifixion, dying for us on the Cross as the perfect sacrifice of love, as the perfect offering for the absolution of all of our sins and our redemption from sin and evil. Through Him, we have been made clean and once again His beloved children.

With all that God had done for us, and by making a New Covenant with us, alluded to in our first reading today by St. Paul in his Epistle to the Philippians, as we Christians are the new and true ‘circumcised’ people, which does not refer to the physical circumcision of the flesh, but the far better ‘circumcision’ of the heart, we have embraced God and been brought back into His grace and love.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, now we know just how much God has loved us, that He has called us all from among the nations, then we should really love Him back in the same way, and be appreciative and thankful how He has done so much for us, as our loving Father and as the Good Shepherd Who lays down His life for His sheep, all of us. And He rejoices when we have been found and were lost no longer.

Can we spend more time with God and put more effort into our faith in Him, in doing His will and being good in our actions and deeds? Let us be good Christians from now on, and make good use of the lives and opportunities that He has given to us. Let us devote ourselves and focus our attention on God from now on, living our live in a Christ-centric way from now on. May God bless us always, now and forevermore. Amen.

Thursday, 5 November 2020 : 31st Week of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Luke 15 : 1-10

At that time, tax collectors and sinners were seeking the company of Jesus, all of them eager to hear what He had to say. But the Pharisees and the scribes frowned at this, muttering, “This Man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” So Jesus told them this parable :

“Who among you, having a hundred sheep and losing one of them, will not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and seek the lost one till he finds it? And finding it, will he not joyfully carry it home on his shoulders? Then he will call his friends and neighbours together, and say, ‘Celebrate with me, for I have found my lost sheep!’ I tell you, in the same way, there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one repentant sinner, than over ninety-nine decent people, who do not need to repent.”

“What woman, if she has ten silver coins and loses one, will not light a lamp, and sweep the house in a thorough search, till she finds the lost coin? And finding it, she will call her friends and neighbours, and say, ‘Celebrate with me, for I have found the silver coin I lost!’ I tell you, in the same way, there is rejoicing among the Angels of God over one repentant sinner.”

Thursday, 5 November 2020 : 31st Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 104 : 2-3, 4-5, 6-7

Sing to the Lord, sing His praise, proclaim all His wondrous deeds. Glory in His holy Name; let those who seek the Lord rejoice.

Look to the Lord and be strong; seek His face always. Remember His wonderful works, His miracles and His judgments.

You descendants of His servant Abraham, you sons of Jacob, His chosen ones! He is the Lord our God; His judgments reach the whole world.

Thursday, 5 November 2020 : 31st Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Philippians 3 : 3-8a

We are the true circumcised people since we serve according to the Spirit of God, and our confidence is in Christ Jesus rather than in our merits. I myself do not lack those human qualities in which people have confidence. If some of them seem to be accredited with such qualities, how much more am I!

I was circumcised when eight days old. I was born of the race of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin : I am a Hebrew, born of Hebrews. With regard to the Law, I am a Pharisee, and such was my zeal for the Law that I persecuted the Church. As for being righteous according to the Law, I was blameless.

But once I found Christ, all those things that I might have considered as profit, I reckoned as loss. Still more, everything seems to me as nothing compared with the knowledge of Christ Jesus, my Lord.