Saturday, 27 July 2019 : 16th Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

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

Exodus 24 : 3-8

Moses came and told the people all the words of YHVH and all His laws. The people replied with one voice : “Everything that YHVH has said, we shall do.”

Moses wrote down all the words of YHVH, then rose early in the morning and built an altar at the foot of the mountain with twelve raised stones for the twelve tribes of Israel. He then sent young men from among the sons of Israel to offer burnt offerings and sacrifice bullocks as peace offerings to YHVH.

And Moses took half the blood and put it in basins; and with the other half of the blood he sprinkled the altar. He then took the Book of the Covenant and read it in the hearing of the people. They said, “All that YHVH said we shall do and obey.”

Moses then took the blood and sprinkled it on the people saying, “Here is the blood of the Covenant that YHVH has made with you in accordance with all these words.”

Friday, 26 July 2019 : 16th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Joachim and St. Anne, Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Exodus 20 : 1-17

God spoke all these words. He said, “I am YHVH your God Who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. Do not have other gods before Me. Do not make yourself a carved image or any likeness of anything in heaven, or on the earth beneath, or in the waters under the earth; you shall not bow down to them or serve them.”

“For I, YHVH your God, am a jealous God; for the sin of the fathers, when they rebel against Me, I punish the sons, the grandsons and the great-grandsons; but I show steadfast love until the thousandth generation for those who love Me and keep My commandments.”

“Do not take the Name of YHVH your God in vain for YHVH will not leave unpunished anyone who takes His Name in vain. Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy. For six days you will labour and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath for YHVH your God.”

“Do not work that day, neither you, nor your son, nor your daughter nor your servants, men or women, nor your animals, nor the stranger who is staying with you. For in six days YHVH made the heavens and the earth and the sea and all that is in them, but on the seventh day He rested; that is why YHVH has blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.”

“Honour your father and your mother that you may have a long life in the land that YHVH has given you. Do not kill. Do not commit adultery. Do not steal. Do not give false witness against your neighbour. Do not covet your neighbour’s house. Do not covet your neighbour’s wife, or his servant, man or woman, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is his.”

Alternative reading

Sirach 44 : 1, 10-15

Let us now glorify illustrious men, the ancestors of our people. But now consider the godly men whose good deeds have not been forgotten. Those who came after them benefitted from the rich legacy they left; their race remained faithful to the Covenant, their children followed their example.

Their family will endure forever and never will its glory be tarnished. Their bodies will be buried in peace but their memory lives through generations. People will speak of their wisdom and the assembly will celebrate their praise.

Sunday, 12 February 2017 : Sixth Sunday of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green
Psalm 118 : 1-2, 4-5, 17-18, 33-34

Blessed are they whose ways are upright, who follow the law of the Lord. Blessed are they who treasure His word and seek Him with all their heart.

You have laid down precepts to be obeyed. O, that my ways were steadfast in observing Your statutes!

Be kind to Your servant, that I may live to follow Your word. Open my eyes that I may see the marvellous truths in Your law.

Explain to me, o Lord, Your commandments, and I will be ever faithful to them. Give me understanding, that I may observe Your law with all my heart.

Sunday, 9 October 2016 : 28th Sunday of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Denis, Bishop and Companions, Martyrs, and St. John Leonardi, Priest (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green
Psalm 97 : 1, 2-3ab, 3cd-4

Sing to the Lord a new song, for He has done wonders; His right hand, His holy arm, has won victory for Him.

The Lord has shown His salvation, revealing His justice to the nations. He has not forgotten His love nor His faithfulness to Israel.

The farthest ends of the earth all have seen God’s saving power. All you lands, make a joyful noise to the Lord, break into song and sing praise.

Tuesday, 5 May 2015 : 5th Week of Easter (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : White

Psalm 144 : 10-11, 12-13ab, 21

All Your works will give You thanks; all Your saints, o Lord, will praise You. They will tell of the glory of Your kingdom and speak of Your power.

That all may know of Your mighty deeds, Your reign and its glorious splendour. Your reign is from age to age; Your dominion endures from generation to generation.

Let my mouth speak in praise of the Lord, let every creature bless His Holy Name, forever and ever.

Monday, 14 April 2014 : Monday of Holy Week (Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Purple/Violet

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today in the Gospel is the sad reality of some portions of the Church and our faith, where people became and end up as hypocrites in their faith, in the name of false almsgiving, charity and humility and end up discrediting the faith itself.

What am I talking about here? It is about some of those who held the view that the Church has to become simple, but for the very wrong reasons. The poverty that these people talked about is literal poverty, stripping the beauty and splendour of the celebration of the Holy Sacrifice of the Lord at the Mass. In the name of false simplicity and poverty, they turned the Holy Mass and its celebration into a playground.

This is a true scandal of the faith, one that is sadly quite existent in our Church these days as it had been in the past decades. They substituted the Lord for their own human desires and lack of appreciation for the true faith that the Lord wants from us. In doing what they had done, they not only doom themselves, but also many others who were innocent, in the process.

In the recent years and decades ever since the end of the renewal of the Second Vatican Council, there had been many mistaken and wayward interpretations on what the Council was truly about, and it ended up on the destruction of the beauty of worship which had been preserved for millenia, and for many years, many parts of the world devolved into anarchy of the faith, because they have failed to understand what the Lord truly wants from them.

They brought low the true meaning of the sacrifice in the Mass, the offering of our hearts and love to the Lord. Yes, just as Mary the sister of Martha and Lazarus once offered her love and devotion to the Lord, only to be rebuked unfairly by the betrayer, Judas Iscariot. She offered the Lord her love and the best offering of her humble heart, anointing and preparing Him for His Passion, while Judas rebuked her for the reason of a hypocrite, pretending to love the poor while in his heart, it was truly a selfish concern for himself.

The same too can be said, even today, on those who wreak havoc on the offering of mankind, who had given their best of all as the gifts and offerings of their heart, in the name of false humility and concern for poverty, or the poverty gospel as one may say. We have to love and care for all, especially the poor for they have little or nothing, and there is much that we can give them. But, this must not be used as an excuse to attack the faith or those who love God and seek to glorify Him by giving Him their all.

We like to make these excuses because we fail to understand and have God in our hearts. Our hearts are not filled with the love and goodness of God, but with malice and ill intent, as Judas Iscariot once did, thinking only about himself and his own benefit with the pretext of giving lip service to God and His way.

This we must not do or we risk to walk the same path that Judas had taken. Mankind had lived for far too long under the influence and corruptions of the evil one. Shall we take the proactive stance and say a definitive no to the devil? Let us cast away all the temptations and false promises which the devil has offered us and instead be true followers of the Lord.

May God be with us, and guide us on our way, as we proceed on this journey of life, that we may always persevere and be strong, rejecting the evil and his falsehoods and be like Mary, giving her all to glorify and to serve the Lord. Let us all remain faithful, brethren! Amen.

Monday, 24 March 2014 : 3rd Week of Lent (Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Purple/Violet

Brothers and sisters in Christ, the key message of today’s readings is that we have to be humble, and cast aside all of our prejudices and judgmental attitudes, and not be stubborn but instead put our trust in God and in His wisdom. That is what we need to know.

Why so, brethren? Why this message for us today? That is rightly so because Jesus and His prophets, shown through the example of Elisha, had been rejected in their own land and were cast aside by their own people. And Jesus pointed out to them, that prophets are not welcome in their own land, in their own hometown, and they were not honoured there.

All is because of the sin of human presumption and assumption. We like to judge and have our opinion on anything and everything around us. And the closer we are related to each other, the more we are likely to form our judgments and opinions on others.

And that was what the people of Jesus’ hometown of Nazareth thought about Him, when He came and proclaimed to them the truth about Himself, and about the Good News that He had come to proclaim. The people of Nazareth hardened their hearts and shut off their ears from listening to the words of salvation offered by Jesus, because to them, He can be no more than just a carpenter, and a carpenter’s son.

And in their minds, surely they will think that, who is this Jesus think He is? How dare He proclaims Himself as the One mentioned in the Scriptures? He thinks that He is a prophet is it? He is only a humble and good-for-nothing carpenter’s son! Is He and His father Joseph not the ones who repaired our wooden furnitures all these while? How can He then be the Prophet! Preposterous!

Yes, brethren, these are likely the thoughts that run inside of the people’s minds as they listened to Jesus, and that was why they were indignant and refused to listen to Him, and they were deep in their prejudice against Jesus and therefore they did not try to understand what Jesus was telling them, to the point of even open and blatant hostility against Him.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, shall we be like them? We have the benefit of knowing who Jesus Christ our Lord is, through the teachings of the Church which was passed down to us from the Apostles of Jesus themselves. Nevertheless, that does not mean that we may always be faithful to God and listen to Him and  His words.

We too can be wayward and walk down the wrong path if we are not careful, and if we do not cultivate and strengthen our faith in the Lord. And this also certainly taught us not to be judgmental or be prejudiced against others, our own brothers and sisters in the faith, or think in any way that we are more righteous or worthy of salvation than others because of who we are.

Let us instead help one another, and help indeed, so that all of us will be able to go as one people and reach out together towards the Lord, that at the end of our journey, we may glorify the Lord our God together as one! God bless us all. Amen.