Friday, 14 September 2018 : Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Red

John 3 : 13-17

At that time, Jesus said to Nicodemus, “No one has ever gone up to heaven except the One Who came from heaven, the Son of Man. As Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that whoever believes in Him may have eternal life.”

“Yes, God so loved the world that He gave His only Son that whoever believes in Him may not be lost, but may have eternal life. God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world; instead, through Him the world is to be saved.”

Thursday, 27 April 2017 : 2nd Week of Easter (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White
John 3 : 31-36

At that time, John the Baptist said, “He Who comes from above is above all; he who comes from the earth belongs to the earth, and his words belong to the earth. He Who comes from heaven speaks of the things He has seen and heard; He bears witness to these things, but no one accepts His testimony. Whoever does receive His testimony acknowledges the truthfulness of God.”

“The One sent by God speaks God’s words, and gives the Spirit unstintingly. The Father loves the Son and has entrusted everything into His hands. Whoever believes in the Son lives with eternal life; but he who will not believe in the Son will never know life, and always faces the justice of God.”

Wednesday, 26 April 2017 : 2nd Week of Easter (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White
John 3 : 16-21

At that time, Jesus said to Nicodemus, “Yes, God so loved the world that He gave His only Son that whoever believes in Him may not be lost, but may have eternal life. God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world; instead, through Him the world is to be saved.”

“Whoever believes in Him will not be condemned. He who does not believe is already condemned, because he has not believed in the Name of the only Son of God. This is how the Judgment is made : Light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.”

“For whoever does wrong hates the light, and does not come to the light, for fear that his deeds will be seen as evil. But whoever lives according to the truth comes into the light, so that it can be clearly seen that his works have been done in God.”

Wednesday, 14 September 2016 : Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Red
John 3 : 13-17

At that time, Jesus said to Nicodemus, “No one has ever gone up to heaven except the One Who came from heaven, the Son of Man. As Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that whoever believes in Him may have eternal life.”

“Yes, God so loved the world that He gave His only Son that whoever believes in Him may not be lost, but may have eternal life. God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world; instead, through Him the world is to be saved.”

Thursday, 7 April 2016 : Second Week of Easter, Memorial of St. John Baptist de la Salle, Priest (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we are presented from both the readings from the Acts of the Apostles and the Holy Gospels, of the realities of the contrast and conflicts that are present between the ways and the thinking of this world, as opposed to the ways of our Lord, which He had revealed to us through Jesus, His Son, and which He had passed down to us through His Apostles and His Church.

In the first reading, taken from the Acts of the Apostles, we continue on from the discourse of the previous days, telling us how the Pharisees, the elders and the chief priests were trying to bully the Apostles and the followers of Christ, using threats and fear in order to pressure them to stop their work and their preaching among the people of God. They thought that by doing so, they would be able to halt such an insurgency against their authority, but they were very wrong in this matter.

Not only that they were not at the least disturbed or affected by the threats, but they even courageously fought back by stating the truth before all of them to hear, as they pointed out that they ought to be obeying God rather than obeying any human authority above that of God’s. And that was a direct rebuke against the elders, the chief priests, the teachers of the Law, the Pharisees and all those who had been trying to stifle and hinder the works of God as exercised through His Apostles.

Through their examples, we can see how courageous we should be as well in how we lived our lives and in how we live our faith. Many of us today prefer to conform to the world and its ways rather than to stand by our Lord and God. Certainly, we have not been as faithful to Him as the Apostles had been. But if we think that those Apostles were extraordinary and beyond our means, then let us remember that they were once sinners too like us, and human as they were, they were not perfect. They too had their doubts and uncertainties, and moments when their faith was challenged.

But God showed them the way, and led them out of their uncertainty and doubts, and He blessed them with courage and strength in order to persevere through those challenges and made their faith firmer and stronger. And through His Holy Spirit, they spoke the truth of the Gospel and the truth as revealed through Jesus Christ our Lord to the whole world, that all those who heard the truth may find their way to salvation.

Today, we celebrate the feast day of a great educator, a holy and devout man, namely, St. John Baptist de la Salle, a priest hailing from Rheims, who lived about two hundred years ago. St. John Baptist de la Salle inspired a great movement and effort through which Christian education and evangelisation were boosted and spread rapidly throughout the world, as missionaries and faithful educators went forth to the four corners of the world preaching the truth of Christ through education.

St. John Baptist de la Salle was born from a privileged family, and he eventually entered the priesthood and devoted himself as a canon of the Cathedral of Rheims, living a comfortable life as how many of the clergy of those years had lived. But instead of remaining as he was in that comfortable position, he went forth and abandoned those comforts, as he heard the higher call to serve the less privileged, the abandoned and the unloved, especially those who have none to bring them the truth of our God.

That was when St. John Baptist de la Salle founded the society of the Brothers of Christian Schools, which members devoted themselves to the advancement of the education of the masses, and the evangelisation of the truth of God through the same education, that through the practice of the faith in their daily action, all of them may find the path to God’s salvation through greater understanding of their faith.

We should see in his examples, and the examples of those who have been inspired by his examples, as the inspiration for us as well, that we may follow in the footsteps of St. John Baptist de la Salle and the Apostles, in preaching the Word of God through words and actions, that all of us may receive the salvation which God has promised to us through His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Let us commit ourselves anew, brothers and sisters in Christ, and commit ourselves wholly to help one another to reach out to the Lord and His salvation. Let us help one another, reminding each other of the obligations we have to follow the Lord and to obey Him even if the whole world may be against us. Let us make use of this season of Easter to deepen our faith and commitment to the Lord, and help to propel ourselves further on the way to eternal life. May God help us and bless us all in our endeavours. Amen.

Thursday, 7 April 2016 : Second Week of Easter, Memorial of St. John Baptist de la Salle, Priest (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

John 3 : 31-36

At that time, John the Baptist spoke to his disciples about Jesus, “He Who comes from above is above all; he who comes from the earth belongs to the earth, and his words belong to the earth. He Who comes from heaven speaks of the things He has seen and heard; He bears witness to these things, but no one accepts His testimony. Whoever does receive His testimony acknowledges the truthfulness of God.”

“The One sent by God speaks God’s words, and gives the Spirit unstintingly. The Father loves the Son and has entrusted everything into His hands. Whoever believes in the Son lives with eternal life; but he who will not believe in the Son will never know life, and always faces the justice of God.”

Wednesday, 6 April 2016 : Second Week of Easter (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we heard that very famous phrase from the Holy Scriptures, from the Holy Gospel according to St. John, verse 3, which spoke about the love of God, that it is so great, that He was willing to send us His Son, Who is Jesus our Lord, that through Him we may not face death, but find eternal redemption and eternal life through Him.

What we have learnt from the Scripture readings today is that God loves us all, and He wants to save us all from the threat of hellfire and eternal damnation, as well as everlasting death. He shall not abandon us to the sufferings of eternal hell. God will protect all those who are faithful to Him, and He shall send His Angels to protect His people, guarding them from those who sought to bring them to damnation.

This was seen in the examples of the Holy Apostles which we heard as told by the Acts of the Apostles. The Apostles were preaching the faith and the truth told by Jesus our Lord to the people, and the Pharisees, the teachers of the Law, the elders and the chief priests were not happy that these Apostles were drawing the people away from them and gaining in influence and human regards.

As a result, they persecuted the Apostles, restricting them and arresting them whenever they could, including what we have witnessed today from the Acts of the Apostles. They imprisoned them and wanted to judge them falsely with false accusations and false judgments in order to silence them and stop their evangelising works. But God had other plans for them, one that no human authority and power could have undone.

For God freed the Apostles through His Angels, and by His guidance, they continued their ministry to the people of God, and despite the continued opposition by the Pharisees and the other enemies of the Lord and His truth, the Apostles continued to establish the Church and strengthened it through turbulent and difficult times. And more and more souls were saved by being welcomed into the Church and by their belief in the Lord Jesus.

God shows His grace and blessings to all those who have kept their faith in Him, and He shall not disappoint all those who have placed their trust in Him. For indeed, while the trust of men is feeble and weak, and can cause disappointments easily, but to trust in God is like to trust in a strong and firm rock, immovable and solid, amidst all the uncertainties and challenges of this life.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, as we proceed through this joyous season of Easter, let us all reflect on our own lives, our deeds and actions. Let us all think about how we have lived our lives and in how we have interacted with one another. Have we truly been faithful to God? Or have we instead been swayed by the temptations of this world to deviate from the necessity for us to keep our faith strongly anchored in Him?

Let us ask ourselves, if we have placed our trust far more in ourselves rather than trusting in God and in His promises. This is the reason why so many of us were so reluctant in following God and in committing ourselves to His cause. Remember, brethren, that the Lord Himself had spoken, how the harvest is plentiful in this world, and yet the labourers are few. We have to step up and be courageous in committing ourselves to bring the Lord closer to ourselves and to our brethren around us.

Let us help one another on our path, and help each other to strive to walk in His path in our actions and our dealings with one another. Let our actions be examples for others, through whose actions, we may bring them closer to God, and therefore make ourselves each to be worthy of the Lord and of the salvation and the eternal life He has promised us. May God bless us all and keep us always in His love. God bless us all. Amen.