Saturday, 13 February 2021 : 5th Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

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

Genesis 3 : 9-24

YHVH God called the man saying to him, “Where are you?” He said, “I heard Your voice in the garden and I was afraid because I was naked, so I hid.” God said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree I ordered you not to eat?”

The man answered, “The woman You put with me gave me fruit from the tree and I ate it.” God said to the woman, “What have you done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me and I ate.”

YHVH God said to the serpent, “Since you have done that, be cursed among all the cattle and wild beasts! You will crawl on your belly and eat dust all the days of your life. I will make you enemies, you and the woman, your offspring and her offspring. He will crush your head and you will strike his heel.”

To the woman, God said, “I will increase your suffering in childbearing, and you will give birth to your children in pain. You will be dependent on your husband and he will lord it over you.” To the man, He said, “Because you have listened to your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I forbade you to eat, cursed be the soil because of you! In suffering you will provide food for yourself from it, all the days of your life.”

“It will produce thorn and thistle for you and you will eat the plants of the field. With sweat on your face you will eat your bread, until you return to clay, since it was from clay that you were taken, for you are dust and to dust you shall return.”

The man called his wife by the name of Eve, because she was the mother of all the living. YHVH God made garments of skin for the man and his wife, and with these He clothed them. Then YHVH God said, “Man has now become like one of Us making himself judge of good and evil. Let him not stretch out his hand to take and eat from the tree of life as well, and live forever.”

So God cast him from the garden of Eden to till the soil from which he had been made. And after having driven the man out, God posted Cherubim and a flaming sword that kept turning at the east of the garden of Eden to guard the way to the tree of Life.

Friday, 12 February 2021 : 5th Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Genesis 3 : 1-8

Now the serpent was the most crafty of all the wild creatures that YHVH God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say : You must not eat from any tree in the garden?” The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees in the garden, but of the fruit of the tree that is in the middle of the garden God said : You must not eat, and you must not touch it or you will die.”

The serpent said to the woman, “You will not die, but God knows that the day you eat it, your eyes will be opened and you will be like gods, knowing good and evil.” The woman saw that the fruit was good to eat, and pleasant to the eyes, and ideal for gaining knowledge. She took its fruit and ate it and gave some to her husband who was with her. He ate it.

Then their eyes were opened and both of them knew they were naked. So they sewed leaves of a fig tree together and made themselves loincloths. They heard the voice of YHVH God walking in the garden, in the cool of the day, and they, the man and his wife, hid from YHVH God among the trees of the garden.

Saturday, 20 October 2018 : 28th Week of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

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

Luke 12 : 8-12

At that time, Jesus said to the people, “I tell you, whoever acknowledges Me before people, the Son of Man will also acknowledge before the Angels of God. But the one who denies Me before others will be denied before the Angels of God. There will be pardon for the one who criticises the Son of Man, but there will be no pardon for the one who slanders the Holy Spirit.”

“When you are brought before the synagogues, and before governors and rulers, do not worry about how you will defend yourself, or what to say; for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that time what you have to say.”

Friday, 19 October 2018 : 28th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. John Brebeuf and St. Isaac Jogues, Priests and Companions, Martyrs, and St. Paul of the Cross, Priest (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green or Red (Martyrs) or White (Priests)

Luke 12 : 1-7

At that time, such a numerous crowd had gathered that they crushed one another. Then Jesus spoke to His disciples in this way, “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy. Nothing is covered that will not be uncovered; or hidden, that will not be made known. Whatever you have said in darkness will be heard in daylight, and what you have whispered in hidden places, will be proclaimed from housetops.”

“I tell you, My friends, do not fear those who put to death the body and, after that, can do no more. But I will tell you Whom to fear : Fear the One Who, after killing you, is able to throw you into hell. This One you must fear. Do you not buy five sparrows for two pennies? Yet not one of them has been forgotten by God. Even the hairs of your head have been numbered. Do not be afraid! Are you less worthy in the eyes of God than many sparrows?”

Sunday, 6 November 2016 : 32nd Sunday of Ordinary Time (Second Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green
2 Thessalonians 2 : 16 – 2 Thessalonians 3 : 5

May Christ Jesus our Lord Who has loved us, may God our Father, Who in His mercy gives us everlasting comfort and true hope, strengthens you. May He encourage your hearts and make you steadfast in every good work and word.

Finally, brothers and sisters, pray for us that the Word of God may spread rapidly and be glorified everywhere as it was with you. May God guard us from wicked and evil people, since not everyone has faith. The Lord is faithful; He will strengthen you and keep you safe from the Evil One.

Besides, we have in the Lord this confidence that you are doing and will continue to do what we order you. May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014 : Sixth Day within the Octave of Christmas (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

1 John 2 : 12-17

My dear children, I write this to you : you have already received the forgiveness of your sins through the Name of Jesus. Fathers, I write this to you : you know Him who is from the beginning. Young men, I write this to you : you have overcome the Evil One. My dear children, I write to you because you already know the Father.

Fathers, I write to you because you know Him who is from the beginning. Young men, I write to you because you are strong and the Word of God lives in you who have indeed overcome the Evil One. Do not love the world or what is in it. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

For everything in the world – the craving of the flesh, the greed of eyes and people boasting of their superiority – all this belongs to the world, not to the Father. The world passes away with all its craving but those who do the will of God remain forever.

Homily and Reflection :
https://petercanisiusmichaeldavidkang.com/2014/12/29/tuesday-30-december-2014-sixth-day-within-the-octave-of-christmas-homily-and-scripture-reflections/

Wednesday, 15 October 2014 : 28th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Teresa of Jesus, Virgin and Doctor of the Church (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today we heard about the distinction between the ones who lived in the flesh and in the Spirit, that is those who listen to the whim of their human weaknesses, namely pride, anger, jealousy, desire, arrogance, greed, ignorance, wrath, lust, dishonesty and many others, rather than to walk in the way which the Lord had designed for us.

The Lord had revealed His laws through Moses, with all the rules and regulations designed to help the people to control themselves and prevent themselves from succumbing to the desires and temptations of the flesh and the pleasures of the world, with which Satan constantly and daily assault us all mankind, in order to drag us into damnation together with him for eternity.

The Law of God, as exemplified by the Ten Commandments are a set of guides and rules to help the people of God as focus to lead them in life, just like a lighthouse with its light guides ships away from the shores and from dangerous and sharp rocks, so that they would not flounder and be wrecked on the reefs. Thus the purpose of the Law of God was not to punish, but instead to love the people of God, that is by showing how God loves them through such care that He gave them such guidance that they may not hurt themselves by doing something foolish in life.

Yet, many of the people refused to listen to and obey the laws, despite constant and repeated reminders by the Lord. They continued to persist in their rebelliousness, and they walked with pride, knowingly following the ways of Satan the deceiver, who lavished them with lies and temptations of the flesh. Like the tales of old, again using the example of the ships and the sailors who guide them through rough waters, Satan and his agents were like the legendary sirens who were told to be enchanters who lulled unaware sailors and ships with their songs, that they ended up wrecked on reefs and rocks and be lost.

The lull, the joy and the pleasures of Satan are dangerous, brothers and sisters in Christ, be it then, and be it now. He is always about and around us, looking for opportunities where we are at our most vulnerable. And if we are not careful, we may indeed be trapped by the devices of Satan and fall into damnation. Thus we have to be ever vigilant and be ready to guard ourselves against such vicious attacks.

And how do we best do this? This is by embracing the teachings of Christ and asking the Holy Spirit to be our guide, by entrusting ourselves fully to His love and shunning all things of the devil. That means we have to cast away all acts of fornication and corruption of our flesh, heart and soul, and begin to walk righteously in the sight of God. We have to practice our faith and commit fully to the truth and love of God, showing the faith we have in our words, actions and deeds.

And today, we celebrate the feast of a great woman and saint, whose life can be a model for us all, in living our faith. She is St. Teresa of Jesus, also known famously as St. Teresa of Avila, after the name of the city where she came from. St. Teresa of Jesus was recently made a Doctor of the Church, for her great and numerous works in faith, through which her writings and works became priceless inspiration source for many of the faithful.

St. Teresa of Jesus herself was born in Spain during the time of the early modern era Europe, at the time when the Church was about to be rocked greatly by the so-called Protestant ‘reformation’, where many of the faithful were led away by the lies and falsehoods of the agents of Satan, who infiltrated many hearts of the faithful and turned them against the efforts of the Lord through His Church.

Satan appealed to the people of God, to make themselves free from the Law of God through the Church, which had been seen by many as corrupted. Indeed, the Church leadership and hierarchy at the time had been seen as debauched and corrupt, much like the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law at the time of Jesus. They only fulfilled the Law on the superficial level, but in their hearts, they were corrupt and they served only their own desires.

But many people took matter to their own hands, and rather than listening to the words of the Holy Spirit, they followed the lies of Satan that caused even greater injury to the Church and to the faithful. They refused to help the Church and the faithful to get free from the entanglements of Satan, and instead they themselves became entangled even further.

This was where St. Teresa of Jesus entered the scene. Joining the Carmelites at a young age, St. Teresa of Jesus had always been noted for her great piety and devotion to the Lord, who made herself to belong completely to Christ our Lord. She wrote many books and writings which became model for many who came after her in the subsequent centuries, and she also received many visions about the Lord, and how we mankind ought to live our faith life. She eventually also became a leading figure of the Counter-Reformation efforts to return many souls to the Lord.

She suffered from many illnesses and diseases throughout her life as a religious sister, but she did not complain or become bitter because of that. Instead, she saw it as a suffering being suffered for the sake of the Lord. She also promoted the need for mankind to put themselves completely in trust to God, and to surrender themselves and subject themselves to the love of God.

This and many of her other teachings in her writings help mankind to find a clear path towards the Lord, avoiding all the efforts of the devil who constantly tried to turn mankind away from the path towards salvation and into damnation with him. Like the clear and bright light of the lighthouse, what St. Teresa of Jesus had written, had said and had done in her life, enduring suffering after suffering in joy with the Lord, and in her complete and undying trust in God, she showed us all, who still wander in the darkness of this world, how to reach our target and destination, that is the Lord our God.

Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, let us today ask for the intercession of St. Teresa of Jesus and of other holy saints of God, that they may help intercede for our sake, and pray for us before the Lord, that we may follow their leads and examples, to avoid falling into the traps and devices of Satan and that we may also reject firmly all forms of fornications of the flesh, and begin to live according to the Spirit. May Almighty God guide us on our way, and lead us to Himself, that we may find our way to resist Satan and remaining true to our faith in God. God bless us all. Amen.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014 : 27th Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we heard in the Scriptures, in the first reading, in the letter which St. Paul addressed to the Church in Galatia, on the conflict which existed even among the Apostles, and of the good works which they had performed among the people of God, teaching and spreading the Good News of our Lord Jesus Christ.

However, indeed, the Apostles themselves were still human, although they had indeed been blessed and inspired by the Holy Spirit which they had received together at the day of the Pentecost, and which they spread to those chosen to be Apostles and leaders by the laying on of the hand. The Holy Spirit strengthened and guided them in their actions, but they were still humans after all, even that of St. Paul.

It was human nature for them to feel fear and insecurity, which sometimes may lay in the way of the good works of the Lord, as St. Paul put it, in how Peter, the chief of the Apostles acted in such a way to the people of God, to those among the faithful who did not belong to the Jewish race, in a prejudiced and biased manner, to please those who came from Jerusalem.

It is in our human nature to think first about our own self-preservation and for our own safety and benefits first before thinking about others. We are by nature selfish and proud of ourselves, which if we can see, even St. Paul in his letter to the Galatians espoused this, in his manner to establish how his own actions compared to that of Peter was righteous and just.

That is why, brothers and sisters in Christ, we need to be in constant touch with our Lord and God, so that we may always be reminded our own frailties and insecurities, and also reminded of what God has in stock for us, and as well as the nature of our God, that is mercy and love. He is loving just as He is forgiving, and to all those who walk in His ways, He would grant them much grace and blessings. He provides for us all in all things, so that we really have no need to worry or fear.

And today Jesus showed us in the Gospel, how to pray to the Lord, with proper disposition and attitude, which will definitely bring spiritual goodness to our hearts, minds and souls. We may think that we know how to pray, and we may think that we do not need to be coached and taught on how to do so, but that is where we are again very, very wrong.

If we notice, many of us when we pray, we end up in creating a litany of requests and demands, asking God to fulfill and heed to our wishes and wants. As a result, our prayers became insincere, and what ought to be a communication and loving contact between us and our Father in heaven, who loves us and cares for us, end up being like a spoilt child crying for demands to be fulfilled by his parents.

That is why, the Lord’s Prayer, Pater Noster, the prayer which Jesus taught His disciples is the perfect prayer, which establishes between us the crucial link with God our Father, beginning by extolling His greatness and holiness, as well as showing our perfect and complete obedience to His will and graces, which He as the Lord of all heaven and earth, has right to justify all that He has planned for us.

And instead of boasting of our achievements and demanding from Him what we want to have in life, we should rather give thanks to Him for His provision in our lives, that in our daily lives, we have enough to live for ourselves, and if we do not have enough, that He moved the hearts of those around us to help us make ends meet in this life, just as He moved those with excess to generously give part of what they have more.

And ultimately, that we seek God’s mercy for the sins and wrongs we have committed in the course of our lives. Our days do not pass without us committing sins and unworthy things, and no matter how small they are, they bar us from proceeding forward to be closer to God. And we have committed sins and cause injury, both physical and mental, to our brethren around us, just as they have done the same unto us.

If we persist in our hatred and unwillingness to forgive one another, this will merely lead to more and more pain and suffering among us, which will lead to even more sin and darkness in our lives, that will end up separating us further and further from the love of God and bring us ever closer to the brink of damnation. Thus, it is beautiful and wonderful indeed if we can truly forgive one another, that is to forgive each other the sins and mistakes.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, therefore, we who are all children of God, the members of His Church, we must all stand together as one. Do not let our ego and Satan break our unity and strength. Let us all forgive one another when we committed any wrongs or mistakes, and let us all renew our faith and commitment to the Lord, by spending precious time with Him, in deep and genuine prayer, not for our own needs and desires, but for our spiritual growth and salvation in God.

May Almighty God, our Father who is in heaven, forgive us our sins, just as we have forgiven others who have sinned against us, and may He never cease to love us and grant us His daily blessings. God be with us all. Amen.

Tuesday, 30 September 2014 : 26th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Jerome, Priest and Doctor of the Church (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we heard how Job, the rich man who encountered great calamities because of the works of Satan to tempt him and test his faith in God, lamented about the sufferings which he had endured, and cursed that life which he had been brought to difficulties in, even to the point of cursing and regretting his own birth, a great lamentation and sorrow indeed.

But to all those who are familiar and know the Book of Job well, even though Job complained and complained about many things, and questioned about many things, but in no way that he was being directly disrespectful or insulting against God. Job also in the end realised the love which God had for him and all mankind, and was truly very sorry and repentant for all the abuses and curses which he had uttered.

And in the Gospel according to St. Luke, we heard how Jesus was proceeding to Jerusalem to embrace His mission as the Saviour of mankind, and then when He was passing by a Samaritan village, He asked for a lodging and dwelling, and was rejected because the people heard and knew that He was going to Jerusalem, the capital city of Judea and where the Jews have their centre of power.

We all should know that the Jews and the Samaritans at that time, as it had been for centuries before the coming of Christ, had been at odds and relationship between them had been stormy at best. The Samaritans feared the Jews because the Jews often mistreated them and have strong prejudice against them, and at times they had also suffered under the rule of the Jews, while the Jews themselves, puritan in nature, particularly the Pharisees, strongly condemned and looked down at the Samaritans as pagans and barbarians.

Therefore, it was likely that the Samaritans in the village refused to accept Jesus, not because of any hostile intent or malice, as what was shown by the Pharisees and the people of Israel themselves towards Jesus, but rather because of fear, uncertainty and doubt about what would happen to them, if they were to accept Jesus into their midst. Surely they were also aware that the Jews were particularly not at friendly terms with Jesus and His disciples at the time. It was after all, moments just before Jesus would carry on with His Passion and suffer death at their hands.

And notably, we should see that, Jesus did not punish them, and He even rebuked the Apostles for suggesting that the Lord should punish them for their apparent rejection of Him. This is in fact the same as what happened to Job, when his friends, fellow faithful ones of the Lord, counselled him and in a sense, persuaded him to be admonished, because they thought that Job was a sinner, and it was because of sin that he was punished. The truth was that Job was special, and he suffered not because of his sins, but rather, because he was truly faithful.

Today, we also celebrate the feast of St. Jerome, one of the great early Church fathers, and one of those who initiated the translation of the Bible from the original Greek version, the Septuagint, into a Latin version, which was more comprehensible to the Latin speaking world of the western portion of the Roman Empire, and eventually how we all know the Scriptures we have today, which are further translations from the Latin Bible written by St. Jerome, the Vulgate Bible.

St. Jerome himself once lived a pleasurable and debauched life early in his life, but soon his experiences, especially as he studied the occurrences of death in catacombs awakened him to the realities of hell to come. Thus, he atoned for his sins, and turned his energy into intellectual pursuits, working hard to study the teachings of the Lord and the teachings of His Church.

St. Jerome was indeed quite a scholar and writer, and his contributions to the Church was indeed immense. He wrote extensively, and his writings, together with his contemporary, St. Augustine of Hippo, another Doctor of the Church and important pillar of the Western Christendom, they formed the strong foundation and basis for the development of the faith and the Church in the subsequent years, including up to today.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, the fact highlighted here very clearly, after we heard the Scripture and Gospel readings, as well as the life of St. Jerome, we should all realise how our Lord is great, loving and merciful. God does not desire our destruction and suffering, but rather our prosperity and happiness. That is why He will never punish us without good reason, and more often than not, the suffering we encounter in life, was because of the works of Satan and his agents, as well as from ourselves.

It is indeed our wickedness and our lack of faith which caused us to suffer, because these separate us from the love and harmony of God, and we end up to dwell in the darkness of sin and evil, and it is this darkness that cause us suffering, and if we are not careful, we risk losing ourselves completely and fall into eternal damnation together with Satan and his angels.

Clearly this is not what we want. Therefore, let us all today vow to renew our faith to the Lord, and show it through concrete action, so that through our words and deeds, we may bring glory to God and show all those who see us, how great and loving is our God, and how merciful He is to forgive us from all our sins. May all of us be freed from the suffering of evil and this world, and be led into a new life in perfect happiness and joy of the Lord. Amen.