Tuesday, 7 June 2016 : 10th Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 4 : 2-3, 4-5, 7-8

Answer when I call, o God, my justice! When I was in distress, You gave me solace. Have compassion on me and hear my plea. And you people, how long will you harden your hearts? How long will you delight in deceit and go in search of falsehood?

But you must know that the Lord has shown His kindness to me. When I call to Him, He hears me. Be angry, but do not offend. Keep your words to yourself, when you are in bed, and be still.

Many ask, “Who will give us a happy time? Would that His favour shine upon us!” You, o Lord, have put joy in my heart; more than by giving me wine and food.

Friday, 23 January 2015 : 2nd Week of Ordinary Time, Week of Prayer for Christian Unity (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we heard two main things in the readings from the Holy Scriptures. The first, from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Hebrews spoke about the new covenant which Christ brought with Him and sealed with mankind, superseding the old covenant of God with Abraham and the people of God. And them the second, from the Holy Gospel according to St. Mark, is the calling of the Twelve Apostles, whom Jesus made as the chiefs of His disciples.

Today’s readings talk about the change brought about by Christ, to establish at last the promises which He had made to His people over the millennia. After long ages and years of difficulty, conflict and disobedience by the people of God, finally He came to straighten things out and remade things anew. And this is to remind us also that while we are ever disobedient and unfaithful, but our Lord is ever faithful to us, to the point of coming down Himself to seal the covenant, the new covenant with all of us.

The old covenant of Abraham and God was set after he obeyed the Lord’s call, who called him from his ancestral lands, to follow where the Lord instructed him to go to. Abraham was faithful, and he followed the Lord throughout his life, and he was even willing to sacrifice his own son, as a sign of that undying and ultimate faith which he had to the Lord. And for that faith, God rewarded him and promised him the great and rich inheritance and blessings which He would provide him and his descendants if they remained true to their part of the promise and the covenant.

The covenant which God established with Abraham and His descendants had been broken many, many times, and just as their ancestors had done, they disobeyed the Lord and broke their part of the covenant. They forgot about the Lord, abandoned Him, found and worshipped other gods instead of the one true God. The people of God had been rescued and protected from various harm and liberated even from the Egyptians, and yet still they had the nerve to complain against God and rebel against Him.

That was why the wrath of God was against them, and He scattered them over the nations. But this does not mean that He wanted their destruction or annihilation, but rather that they may return to Him and turn back on the evils that they have committed. And that covenant, having been broken by the disobedience of the people of God, had become a useful and empty covenant, without use or benefit, and that is why He sent us our Lord Jesus Christ, to be the Mediator and the bearer of the New Covenant.

And what is this new covenant? If we look at the first covenant, God established that covenant following the faithfulness of Abraham in following His will, and upon the sacrifices of animals, lambs and goats, the blood of those animals, He established the first covenant, but being based on imperfect offering of animal blood, it is not a steady and firm covenant, and it is dependent on both sides of those involved in the covenant, and if one party does not fulfill their part of the covenant, then it would be null and void.

That is why our Lord Jesus Christ established the new covenant with us all, which was sealed not by a mere offering of bull’s blood and lamb’s blood, but by the very blood of the Lamb of God, Christ Himself, who let Himself to be led to the slaughterhouse by His enemies, and allowed Himself to be humiliated and scourged, to be wounded for our sins, and thus to die for the sins we have committed, for all the rebelliousness and disobedience which we have committed through all time.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today we have to realise that we have all been given a second chance by our loving God. He has given us this new chance through the sacrifice of His Son, who died on the cross for us. Are we grateful for the wonderful gifts which He had given us? Have we been thankful for all the love and mercy He had shown us all?

If our answers for all these are no, then we should really rethink our lives and reflect deep in our lives. Do we see the Lord as our loving Father, and as the One who has provided us with all that we need? Do we see the Lord as our Saviour who had freed us from the debts of sin which weighed us down and prevented us from being liberated from the bonds of Satan?

Therefore, brethren, let us all from today on, renew our commitment to the Lord our God, be faithful to Him and no longer commit anything that is wicked in the eyes of the Lord. Let us all realise that with every sin we committed, we brought great pain and sorrow for our Lord who desires nothing else but our salvation and liberation from death, which is caused by our sins.

Let us all change our ways for the better, sinning no more and following what our Lord had shown us. May Almighty God be with us all, and may He guide us all to life eternal, through the loving sacrifice which He had shown to all of us. Amen.

Monday, 3 November 2014 : 31st Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Martin de Porres, Religious (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green or White (Religious)

Luke 14 : 12-14

At that time, Jesus also addressed the man who had invited Him, and said, “When you give a lunch or a dinner, do not invite your friends, or your brothers and relatives, or your wealthy neighbours. For surely they will also invite you in return, and you will be repaid.”

“When you give a feast, invite instead the poor, the crippled, the lame and the blind. Fortunate are you then, because they cannot repay you; you will be repaid at the resurrection of the upright.”


Homily and Reflection : 

Sunday, 12 October 2014 : 28th Sunday of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Isaiah 25 : 6-10a

On this mountain YHVH Sabaoth will prepare for all peoples a feast of rich food and choice wines, meat full of marrow, fine wine strained. On this mountain He will destroy the pall cast over all peoples, this very shroud spread over all nations, and death will be no more.

The Lord YHVH will wipe away the tears from all cheeks and eyes; He will take away the humiliation of His people all over the world : For YHVH has spoken. On that day you will say : This is our God. We have waited for Him to save us, let us be glad and rejoice in His salvation. For on this mountain the hand of YHVH rests.

Thursday, 25 September 2014 : 25th Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 89 : 3-4, 5-6, 12-13, 14 and 17

You turn humans back to dust, saying, “Return, o mortals!” A thousand years in Your sight are like a day that has passed, or like a watch in the night.

You sow them in their time, at dawn they peep out. In the morning they blossom, but the flower fades and withers in the evening.

So make us know the shortness of our life, that we may gain wisdom of heart. How long will You be angry, o Lord? Have mercy on Your servant.

Fill us at daybreak with Your goodness, that we may be glad all our days. May the sweetness of the Lord be upon us; May He prosper the work of our hands.

Tuesday, 10 June 2014 : 10th Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 4 : 2-3, 4-5, 7-8

Answer when I call, o God, my Justice! When I was in distress, You gave me solace. Have compassion on me and hear my plea. And you people, how long will you harden your hearts? How long will you delight in deceit and go in search of falsehood?

But you must know that the Lord has shown His kindness to me. When I call to Him, He hears me. Be angry, but do not offend. Keep your words to yourself, when you are in bed, and be still.

Many ask, “Who will give us a happy time? Would that His favour shine upon us!” You, o Lord, have put joy in my heart; more than by giving me wine and food.

Friday, 6 June 2014 : 7th Week of Easter, Memorial of St. Norbert, Bishop (Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today we heard about the calling and the commissioning of St. Peter the Apostle, when the Lord Jesus talked to him, heart-to-heart on the shore of the Lake of Galilee after His resurrection. He asked Peter three times whether he loved Him more than anything or anyone else, and Peter affirmed his love and faith in Jesus. And Jesus gave him His sheep to care for, as His vicar on earth, which is the position inherited by our Pope today as the successor of St. Peter the Apostle.

For those of us who do not realise the significance of such an action by Jesus in today’s readings, Jesus asked Peter three times for his answer whether he loved Him is exactly because, for the same number of times, Peter had betrayed His Lord by denying Him on that night when Jesus was brought before the Sanhedrin, that is the Council of the elders and the chief priests to be condemned to death.

Peter surely knew that the Lord did such when He asked for his love three times, that the Lord knew of His denial, and how he had fallen as a disciple of His, but yet when Jesus asked him and affirmed his love for Himself, Peter had truly been forgiven by the most merciful Lord, and from then on, became the greatest servant of the Lord, leading the flock of Christ as His vicar on earth.

Today we focus on the Lord in His merciful and loving aspect, just as He is caring to all of us. But He also revealed today that to be His followers and servants is definitely not easy, and various challenges will await us if we decide to remain true to His path, as St. Peter himself had been told and what truly happened to him at the end of his life, as well as what had happened to St. Paul, who had to endure prison and incarcerations after incarcerations.

Jesus told Peter himself how he would die at the hands of the godless, and those who refused to listen to the truth of Christ. This was in fact the same fate that awaits all those who went on to preach the Good News, including the other Apostles and disciples of Christ, and St. Paul himself. They all met their deaths in various ways, but nevertheless, through their death, they brought glory to God, and through them more and more people came to know of the Lord and be saved.

All of these bring about the reality about our faith. For too long we have indeed been complacent in our faith, and we often take a laid-back attitude about it, pretending that we have easy and blissful life all the time in this world. On the other extreme is also that we are afraid to seek the Lord and ask for His forgiveness whenever we have committed sins in our respective lives. We therefore become isolated and do not receive the Lord’s forgiveness and instead we fall into even greater darkness, committing even greater evils.

We have to realise, brothers and sisters in Christ, as today’s Scripture readings had highlighted it to us, that we have to accept the realities it presented to us, that first, God is loving and merciful, for to those who have the will and desire to love God, He will grant them pardon and rich blessings. And secondly, that His way is different from the ways of the world, and this is why, suffering and persecution will be a part of the lives of those who keep their faith in God.

But God is always with us, and He will guide us, if we remain faithful, and that He assured the disciples and the Apostles, and rich indeed would be their reward for keeping the faith in heaven. And today, brethren, we also commemorate yet another faithful servant of God, that is St. Norbert, a bishop of Germany, who lived during the middle of the Medieval era Europe, and was also known as St. Norbert of Xanten, for he was born in that city.

St. Norbert led a very holy and religious life, and a life of simplicity and humility, especially after an incident which almost took his life, which he attributed to divine protection, and ever since, he deepened further his spirituality and dedication to the Lord. He established and strengthened religious orders and helped to spread the teachings of the faith to many people, and gained great following in the process.

He was a great reformer of the Church and the faith, adamant and strong in his principles in reforming the Church for the better, especially after he was appointed as the Archbishop of Magdeburg, an important position in the Church. And in conducting and pushing forward with his reforms, he made many enemies, many of whom sent assassins after him. Nevertheless those attempts failed, and St. Norbert continued to carry out his good deeds and works until his passing from this world.

We have to realise, brethren, that we have many graces awaiting us if we allow God to come to us, and do not close ourselves to the loving hands of the Lord, which He extends freely to us, offering us forgiveness and everlasting love. May St. Norbert intercede for us, that we may be brought ever closer to reconciliation with our God, and receive great blessings in our lives. Let us also face the challenges and opposition in life with joy and happiness, knowing that God is always with us, His beloved children. God bless us all. Amen.

Sunday, 1 June 2014 : Seventh Sunday of Easter, World Communications Sunday (Second Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

1 Peter 4 : 13-16

Instead, you should be glad to share in the sufferings of Christ because, on the day His glory is revealed, you will also fully rejoice. You are fortunate if you are insulted because of the Name of Christ, for the Spirit of glory rests on you.

I suppose that none of you should suffer for being a murderer, a thief, a criminal or an informer; but if anyone suffers on account of being a Christian, do not consider it a disgrace; rather let this Name bring glory to God.

Saturday, 31 May 2014 : Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Zephaniah 3 : 14-18

Cry out with joy, o daughter of Zion; rejoice, o people of Israel! Sing joyfully with all your heart, daughter of Jerusalem!

YHVH has lifted your sentence and has driven your enemies away. YHVH, the King of Israel is with you; do not fear any misfortune. On that day they will say to Jerusalem : Do not be afraid nor let your hands tremble, for YHVH your God is within you, YHVH, saving Warrior. He will jump for joy on seeing you, for He has revived His love.

For you He will cry out with joy, as you do in the days of the Feast. I will drive away the evil I warned you about, and you will no longer be shamed.


Alternative reading


Romans 12 : 9-16b

Let love be sincere. Hate what is evil and hold to whatever is good. Love one another and be considerate. Outdo one another in mutual respect. Be zealous in fulfilling your duties. Be fervent in the Spirit and serve God.

Have hope and be cheerful. Be patient in trials and pray constantly. Share with other Christians in need. With those passing by, be ready to receive them. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not wish evil on anyone. Rejoice with those who are joyful, and weep with those who weep. Live in peace with one another. Do not dream of extraordinary things.

Saturday, 12 April 2014 : 5th Week of Lent (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Purple/Violet

Jeremiah 31 : 10, 11-12ab, 13

Hear the word of YHVH, o nations, proclaim it on distant coastlands : He who scattered Israel will gather them and guard them as a shepherd guard His flock.

For YHVH has ransomed Jacob and redeemed him from the hand of his conqueror. They shall come shouting for joy, while ascending Zion; they will come streaming to YHVH’s blessings.

Maidens will make merry and dance, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness. I will give them comfort and joy for sorrow.