Tuesday, 29 September 2015 : Feast of the Holy Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Daniel 7 : 9-10, 13-14

I looked and saw the following : Some thrones were set in place and One of Great Age took His seat. His robe was white as snow, His hair white as washed wool. His throne was flames of fire with wheels of blazing fire. A river of fire sprang forth and flowed before Him. Thousands upon thousands served Him and a countless multitude stood before Him. Those in the tribunal took their seats and opened the book.

I continued watching the nocturnal vision : One like a Son of Man came on the clouds of heaven. He faced the One of Great Age and was brought into His presence. Dominion, honour and kingship were given Him, and all the peoples and nations of every language served Him. His dominion is eternal and shall never pass away; His kingdom will never be destroyed.


Alternative reading

Revelations 12 : 7-12a

War broke out in heaven with Michael and his angels battling with the dragon. The dragon fought back with his angels, but they were defeated and lost their place in heaven. The great dragon, the ancient serpent known as the devil or Satan, seducer of the whole world, was thrown out. He was hurled down to earth, together with his angels.

Then I heard a loud voice from heaven : “Now has salvation come, with the power and the kingdom of our God, and the rule of His Anointed. For our brothers’ accuser has been cast out, who accused them night and day, before God. They conquered him by the Blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they gave up their lives going to death.”

“Rejoice, therefore, o you heavens and you who dwell in them.”

Monday, 20 October 2014 : 29th Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we are asked through the Scriptures we have heard, to reflect on our own lives, on whether our lives have been filled with selfishness, self-centredness, egoistic acts and behaviours, as well as pride or arrogance, or whether our lives had been filled with love, that is genuine love for one another, and the love for God just as much as we love ourselves.

It is very difficult for us men to live according to the latter standards as compared to the former standards. We have a big ego with us, just as the word ‘Ego’ in Latin means ‘I’, that is we are first and foremost always concerned first about ourselves, and then far below that concern is the concern about others who are around us. We are by our nature selfish, and filled with desire to the point of greed and unwillingness to show charity to others.

This ‘I’ is dangerous indeed, and do you all know who was Satan, our great enemy, before he is known now as the prince of evil and darkness? He was Lucifer, the ‘lightbringer’, one created bright, beautiful, mighty and great among all the angels who serve the Lord day and night, not to outshine his Creator, but to show all creation how great and mighty the Lord is, in creating such a perfect and wonderful creation.

Yet, in the beauty, greatness and perfection in which he had been created, Lucifer grew proud and attached to his perfection and wonders, and thus his ego grew, and his desires grew to the point that he aspired to be like God and even to surpass His own creation, in his own words, that he wanted to raise his throne above the stars of God, and to rule over all creations.

It is this pride that led to his downfall, and it is this same arrogance over his apparent greatness and abilities that made him to commit sin before God. And his rebellion against God brought him nothing but his own downfall, as he was cast out of heaven, as a sign to all others who also followed him into his rebellion, thinking that in the greatness and all the endowments they had received, they had the right to boast or be proud of those achievements.

And what did he get in the end? Nothing but damnation and eternal punishment, for the pride and greed that brought him nothing else but oblivion. Hence, this is also to help remind us, just as we heard in the Holy Scriptures, how Jesus and St. Paul both urged the people of God to let go of their ego, their pride, their arrogance, their selfishness, and all of the vices they had committed in life, and embrace the true faith, in accepting the fullness of the faith as taught to them by the Lord and through His Apostles and disciples.

How is this relevant to us? We can look at our own lives. It is very obvious that at some points and moments in our lives, we are vulnerable to our ego and our desires. How many times in our respective lives, that we put our own prosperity above that of others? How many of us did not hesitate to do certain actions, even when fully knowing that such actions may bring hurt to others, but may benefit us in some ways?

Surely this life is filled with many of such examples, when we mankind succumb to our desires and began to greedily desire on things and possessions, even often beyond our means and at the expense of others. This is also the precise cause of the many evils and miseries in the world, namely wars, conflicts, abuses, hatred and jealousy of one another. That is because mankind had grown proud of themselves and what they can do, and by what they have discovered in life, that they think too highly of themselves and as a result, inevitably come into conflict with one another due to conflicting interests.

Thus, brothers and sisters in Christ, what then, we can do so that we can prevent or to settle this matter? We are often too focused on the world, and all things worldly, to the point that we ended up worrying too much about what we ought to eat, what we may receive in life, what possessions we should have or obtain, and many other things, while forgetting that in our pursuit of such things and in our worry, we may end up causing trouble for one another.

Worry and fear is not the way, brothers and sisters in Christ. We have to realise that our Lord and God loves us very much, and He wants to love us tenderly just as a father loves his children. He provides us with essentially everything that we need in this life. He will care for us as He had always done, and if we put our complete trust and faith in Him, we shall never be disappointed.

Indeed, those who put their trust in themselves will be disappointed, and just like the rich man who worried about where he ought to put his excess harvest products and building new barns to contain them, he did not put their trust in God and thus he will suffer for his selfishness and lack of love, both for men and for God. Thus, this is exactly what we need to avoid.

Let us all from now on, lead a life filled with genuine faith in God, seeking God at all times, and seeking to imitate Him in all that we do, so that in everything we do in this life, we may be truly like the children and the servants of God, and like the Apostles and disciples in their lives, so that our lives may be filled with love and charity, love that we show for our fellow men, particularly those who are in most need for our love, the last, the lost and the least among men.

And lastly, let us all love God by devotion and by action, showing our genuine faith to Him founded in love. May Almighty God see our love and our faith, and by those love and faith we have done in this life, may we be made justified and worthy of salvation and the promise of eternal life which God had made through Jesus His So. Let us pray therefore for one another, and helping one another that all of us will reach the Lord our God safely. Amen.

(Usus Antiquior) Feast of Dedication of St. Michael the Archangel (I Classis) – Monday, 29 September 2014 : Homily and Scripture Reflections

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we celebrate the great feast of a great protector, our great defense against the assaults of the evil one, Satan, the prince and progenitor of all evils. We celebrate today the feast of the chief of all the angelic hosts of heaven, that is St. Michael the Archangel, prince of all the angels, and chief of the seven Archangels who served before the throne of God.

The angels were created by the Lord to be His servants, that is to be the ones who carry out His will throughout the world, to be His messengers and the bearers of His good works, to exercise His power throughout the universe He had created. He created angels of many forms and kinds, and they have various tasks and functions, depending on how they were created.

Just like men, when we were first created, the angels were initially pure and blameless, free from what is now called as sin, the impurities and imperfections that blemished the purity of creation, through disobedience against the will of God. The angels too, were granted free will just like us, so that, just as we are able to choose our path and destination in life, then they too were able to choose.

But everything was good and perfect, just as our ancestors once lived in perfect peace and harmony in the gardens of Eden, the angels were all pure and immaculate, free from all evil and taints of sin, that is until the corruption and fall of Lucifer, the greatest, brightest and the mightiest of all the angels, and unfortunately, his pride too was the greatest of all the angels, his vanity and sense of superiority over others, which proved to be his greatest undoing.

While now we speak of St. Michael the Archangel as the chief of all the heavenly hosts, he was not made such because of his greatness and his power or might, neither it was because he was the most beautiful or splendid among the angels of God. It was rather because of St. Michael’s great obedience and faith in the Lord, which made him to be the greatest defender of the Lord and His beloved people against the forces of evil.

For as mentioned, that Lucifer was once the greatest and the mightiest among the angels, but this made him proud beyond any pride, and he began to plot his rise among the angels, and eventually even boasted that he would make his throne rise above the stars of God, namely the angels, to be the ruler of them, and displacing God as the ruler over all creations.

Lucifer was proud and haughty, and he was brought down, because he was thinking too highly of himself, aspiring to be the ruler of all surpassing the Creator, while he is merely a creation, albeit a glorious and great one at that. On the contrary, St. Michael was known for his great faith and piety, and the complete trust he has for the Lord. And in addition to this, he was also told to be trembling at always before the presence of God.

This does not mean that St. Michael was fearful or weak, but rather, in doing so, he actually by himself acknowledging the superiority of God, and how great God is as compared to himself. It is his humility, courage and piety which made the Lord to choose him and honour him to be the great commander of His heavenly forces. And he courageously led the forces of the faithful against the deceiver and the evil one, the fallen Lucifer, who was struck down and cast out of heaven, to suffer for eternity the fate prepared for him.

The examples of St. Michael’s faith, piety, dedication and courage therefore should become guiding lights for us to follow, that in our actions and deeds, we may model them after what St. Michael had once done, and what he is doing now, that is leading the hosts of the Lord in a constant and regular battle for the salvation of our souls, against Satan, the fallen Lucifer, and his allies, those angels who were also ensnared in his pride and vanity, and ended up rebelling against God.

We mankind are special indeed, for we are the greatest of God’s creations, including even the angels, and we are the most beloved ones of all the things which God had created. As such, while the angels who rebelled were given no second chance to turn back to the Lord, and receive forgiveness, we mankind alone had been given this gift of forgiveness, that as long as we repent our sins and rebelliousness, and if we are willing to follow the way of the Lord, we will be saved.

That is why, even though our ancestors had disobeyed the Lord, through the instigation of the snake, the form assumed by the fallen Lucifer, who wanted mankind to also follow into his rebellion, God gave us a second chance, and by no other means than to send His very own Son, part of Himself, Jesus Christ our Lord, to assume our own form, and through what He had done, He gave up His life and through His sacrifice, gained for us a new hope and a new justification in Himself.

And we also have to note that the Lord is thoroughly concerned with us, brothers and sisters in Christ. He is truly concerned about our fate, and whether we will share the fate of the devil, that is to suffer in the hell fire, or to be reunited with Himself in perfect love and harmony, just as what He intended for us at the very beginning when He first created us.

That is why, He sent us Jesus His Son, so that through what He taught His disciples, and from them passed down to us, we may all know what we need to do in order to avoid the dark fate which awaits us if we remain in our life of sin. But we need to be aware that, what Jesus said today in the Gospels, we should not interpret or take it literally, which means that if a part of our body made us to sin, then we should not chop it off just like that.

There is indeed wisdom and thought put into that kind of decision, to cut off the part that corrupts the entire body and soul, but that also means that we can no longer do good with the same part of the body, which God had given us. This is where we need to truly understand, that what the Lord means is that, we have to really do our best to excise from ourselves any actions or parts which have been great hindrances to our salvation, beginning from within ourselves.

Sin corrupts everything it touches, my dear brothers and sisters in Christ, and it is caused by the accumulation of the negativity in our hearts, of which things such as pride, jealousy, hatred, greed and many others consist of. And it was this same thing that had corrupted even the greatest and the brightest of the angels into rebellion against God and therefore sinned against Him.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, therefore let us renew our faith in the Lord, not by just mere empty words and promises, but also through real action and devotions, that is by following the examples of St. Michael the Archangel. Let us excise from our hearts, all evils and darkness, that we may truly become pure and worthy of the Lord once again. We can do this by sincere love and devotion to the Lord, and by listening to what He had said to us through Jesus.

Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all sharpen the edges of our humility and obedience to God, that we may always listen to Him and follow Him, obeying Him in His will for us rather than to listen to our own desires and pride, as Lucifer had done. Let us all not be enslaved by our emotions and pride, that we may truly rebuke Satan and let him to suffer alone the fate which he had earned for himself. Do not let him to drag us into hellfire, brethren!

Let us pray and ask for the help and intercession of St. Michael the Archangel and the holy angels, so that they may help us and protect us from all the harm which the evil one and his allies, the fallen angels had intended for us. St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, so that by the power of God, you who are the prince and leader of all the heavenly hosts, may smite down Satan and all his lies, and all those who are working their evils in our world, seeking after the ruination of all the souls of the faithful. Amen.

Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel, by Pope Leo XIII (1886)

Guido_Reni_031

Sancte Michael Archangele,

St. Michael the Archangel,

 

defende nos in praelio;

defend us in battle

 

contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium.

Safeguard us against the wickedness and the snares of the devil.

 

Imperet illi Deus, supplices deprecamur:

May God therefore restrain him, we humbly pray:

 

tuque, Princeps militiae Caelestis,

and you, the Prince of the heavenly hosts

 

satanam aliosque spiritus malignos, qui ad perditionem animarum pervagantur in mundo,

divina virtute in infernum detrude.

by the power of God, thrust down to hell Satan, and with him the other wicked spirits

who wander through the world for the ruin of souls.

 

Amen.

Amen.

 

(By Pope Leo XIII, in 1886, recited every time after the Holy Mass as an invocation for the intercession of the mighty Archangel in the rebuke of Satan)

Monday, 6 January 2014 : Monday after the Epiphany (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

1 John 3 : 22 – 1 John 4 : 6

Then whatever we ask we shall receive, since we keep His commands and do what pleases Him. His command is that we believe in the Name of His Son Jesus Christ and that we love one another, as He has commanded us.

Whoever keeps His commands remains in God and God in him. It is by the Spirit God has given us that we know He lives in us. My beloved, do not trust every inspiration. Test the spirits to see whether they come from God, because many false prophets are now in the world.

How will you recognise the Spirit of God? Any spirit recognising Jesus as the Christ who has taken our flesh is of God. But any spirit that does not recognise Jesus is not from God, it is the spirit of the antichrist. You have heard of his coming and even now he is in the world.

You, my dear children, are of God and you have already overcome these people, because the One who is in you is more powerful than he who is in the world. They are of the world and the world inspires them and those of the world listen to them.

We are of God and those who know God listen to us, but those who are not of God ignore us. This is how we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error as well.

Friday, 3 January 2014 : Weekday of Christmas Time, Memorial of the Most Holy Name of Jesus (Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Today we glory in Jesus Christ, and we praise Him with the greatest exaltation we can give. Indeed, we ought to do that every single day of our lives without ceasing, with every single breath that we take. For it is through Christ that we have life, and it is also through Christ that we have hope for a new and everlasting life in joy and happiness.

Why is Jesus so special? And why is He so important to all of us? That is because as we all know, He is God Himself, and yet He is not a distant and unloving God who lords Himself over us as gods typically do, in our understanding of the term divine. Instead, Jesus is the Word, who is God and who is with God since the very beginning of all, begotten of the Father not created, and who emptied Himself of His glorious divinity, so that He might be born into this world, as one of us, a lowly human.

His coming had been prophesied by the prophets and the messengers of God for many millennia, and His coming had been expected and awaited by the people of God. God was known as the God named I am who I am, or YHVH in short. His Name is holy, and as one of the Ten Commandments stated, that the people of God must treat this Holy Name with the greatest respect.

We who are the most beloved ones of the Lord’s entire creation, had sinned against Him and rebelled against His will and commands, preferring to trust in Satan rather than in the power of the One and only True God. Yet, God is Love, and in us, He saw that there were good in us, just as all of creation was once perfect in goodness.

Everything was good then, until rebellion, pride and jealousy entered into the heart of Satan, who rebelled against Him and boasted that he would sit at the throne of God, only to be cast down, away from heaven. From there, Satan tricked and lied to our ancestors, that they were deceived and sin entered into the hearts of mankind. Ever since then we had been made dirty by the presence of sin in us, and yet in each one of us good is still present.

That is why God decided to come down upon this world in order to save us all from our fate that is death. He came to us, through the intermediary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, His mother, who bore Him as He remained in her womb for nine months after He, by the power of His own Spirit, entered into the world of mankind

And just like all of us, He has a Name, and a Name was given Him, that is Jesus, which in the original Aramaic is Yehosuah in approximation, containing the Name of YHVH, that is the Lord. Yes, that is in conjunction with the other name that Jesus is known, that is Emmanuel, or God-is-with-us. Yes, the very Name of Jesus is Holy and great, for it is the Name of God Himself, and not just any gods, but the One and only True God who dwells with us, by being born into the world, in order to be our Saviour.

He came into this world and began His ministry, of healing, of teaching, of feeding the people of God. He gave a great revelation on the nature of God and His love. Indeed, as we all know, that God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, so that all who believe in Him will not perish in death, but gain eternal life, which was promised to us by the Lord Himself.

Jesus came into this world with power and authority, and not just any kind of authority or power, but the true authority, out of whom all authorities came about. There can be no power or authority that does not have its source in Jesus. Even the devil, Satan, who had reigned mercilessly upon us as our jailor in the slavery by sin, and who had exercised power and control over us, was powerless and is powerless, and will ever be powerless before Jesus.

The evil spirits feared Him, and said His Holy Name aloud to the people to hear, that is Jesus, the Holy One of God, the Christ Himself. They trembled with fear upon hearing His Name, knowing the fate that they will suffer at the hand of God’s justice. They were once beautiful angels in heaven, but they followed the devil, once Lucifer, the brightest and greatest angel into his rebellion as I mentioned earlier. Ever since then, they were doomed, and destined to suffer for eternity by God’s justice.

The Lord’s authority is over everything, every single matter that exists in our universe and beyond. He is the Lord of all things visible and invisible. That is why even at the utterance of His Name, every knee and every beings shall bow down, genuflect, even flat to the floor! Yes, every beings, everything created by God, be it angels, mankind, animals, plants, or even the demons, the evil spirits, and Satan the great enemy of all himself.

Yet, brethren, sadly, many of us these days seem to take lightly upon this Most holy Name of all names. They made fun of His Name and disrespected His glorious Name. They did not respect the Name of the Lord, through whose sacrifice on the cross, we have been made whole once again, and gained the hop e of life eternal in Him. We instead prefer to deal with the devil, just as our ancestors had done, and glorify him instead of glorifying the Lord in Jesus.

This must not be the way we live our lives, brethren in Christ! We have to seek a total and complete change of our wayward ways, and seek to rectify the impropriety we had done upon the Lord. Keep the Lord’s Name sacred and glorified, just as He had commanded us in the Ten Commandments He gave to Moses. We cannot mock or disdain the Holy Name of Jesus.

Remember, brethren, the power of the Holy Name is powerful. If we are faced with a great power of evil, and we recite this great Name with faith, that is with true faith, and if we are upright in our lives, then no power, no matter how great or how evil it may be, can assail us. God Himself will come to protect us, and those who are against us will flee in fear, because they know that God is with us, Emmanuel! Jesus indeed! The One whose Name is exalted above every other names!

Yes, let us all give glory to our Lord Jesus, and glorify His Name from now on if we have not done so. Come Lord Jesus, be with Your people, and with Your children, and deliver us from the evil one, with the might of Your hands and with the glory of Your Name!

Sunday, 17 November 2013 : 33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time (Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, the Lord shall come as He had promised, and the hour of His coming is drawing very near indeed. And we do not know when this will exactly happen. It is only the Lord who knows the time of His second coming, when He will come to judge all creations, and indeed, to judge all of us, whether we will be found worthy or unworthy to be with Him in the glory of heaven.

That was what the prophet Malachi, the last of all the prophets of the Old Testament had proclaimed, that the Lord will come again, and His coming will be likened to a sun of justice, the light and brightness of which shall unveil all errors and evils, cast out all things dark into its proper place, that is in the darkness of hell, which will be condemned together with those rebels and wicked ones, at the end of time.

Yes, the Lord had indeed once come into this world of ours, God incarnate into our frail body of man, and the divine who assumed the mortality of our human flesh, in Jesus Christ, the Son of Man, and yet at the same time, also the Son of God, fully man and fully divine. This is the first coming of our Lord, who came to destroy the veil of darkness that had separated us for so long from our God. This veil is sin.

The Lord had come to pierce the veil of darkness, and place in all of us, each of us, the light that belongs to Him. This is so that we truly can belong to Him who is Light, as the children of the light, and not of the false light, that is Lucifer, the fallen lightbearer, the deceiver of mankind, and the evil one. In Jesus Christ who came into our world to be our Messiah, our Saviour, exists the fullness of God’s redemption and love.

Yes, the Lord has offered us full pardon and the complete extent of His love for us. All we need is to believe in Him, believe in His death and His resurrection, through whom He had made all these possible for us. Just as He had risen from the dead and elevated into the heavenly glory, assuming His place at the right hand of the Father, we too will be raised up, just as Jesus had promised us through His disciples.

But all of these do not come free and easy, my brothers and sisters, for we have to work and toil hard for it to come about. This is just as St. Paul had said in his letter to the Church in Thessaly, how they laboured and worked hard. They laboured not only for their own sustenance, that they will not bother and be a burden to the people whom they worked with, but they also laboured for the sake of the Gospel.

That is why we too must labour and work, not in any menial way, but what we need to do is that we need to live up the faith that we have in God and show that faith through actions and through love that we show in our actions. We have to show our love for God through our actions, by serving Him wholeheartedly, and by loving our fellow men, especially those who need most of our love and help.

In us, Jesus has dwelled and remained within us, if we have accepted Him as our Lord through the waters of baptism. The Holy Spirit from the Lord dwells within each of us the faithful ones, and we become the Temples of the Holy Spirit. We have been planted with the seeds of goodness, that is with faith, hope, and love, the three most important cardinal virtues. That is why we are expected to bear fruits of faith, the fruits of hope, and ultimately the fruits of love, through our actions that reflect our nature, which itself is a reflection of God.

Jesus Himself referred to His own Body as the Temple of God, as from the time of His coming onwards, and from the time when He had fulfilled the grand plan of salvation, that is dying on the cross at Calvary, the physical Temple of Jerusalem was no longer necessary. The Temple was first built by King Solomon and prepared by his father, King David, built of great beauty and adorned with great wealth and adornments worthy of the Almighty God, Lord and King of all kings.

That Temple was razed at the fall of the city of Jerusalem and the end of the kingdom of Judea to the King of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar. The exiled people of Israel returned to their homeland after seventy years in Babylonian exile, and built the second Temple, which lasted until the time of King Herod the Great, the same King Herod who was mentioned in the birth of Christ, the one trying to kill Jesus.

King Herod rebuilt that Temple into a magnificent Temple that we refer to as the Temple of Jerusalem at the time of Jesus. It took many years to build, and it was not to be completed until decades after Jesus’ death and resurrection. And only a few years after its completion, it would be destroyed by the Romans after a failed Jewish rebellion, which saw the expulsion of the Jews from their homeland. This was the fulfillment of what Jesus had said, that the Temple as it was would not stand and remain, and would be destroyed.

But Jesus also referred to His Body, that is the Temple, which is referred to in other similar Gospel passages, where the people taunted Him when Jesus said that He will tear down the Temple of God and rebuild it in three days. The physical Temple, as we can see, has given way to the real Temple, that is Jesus Christ Himself, God incarnate. This we can see when the veil of the Temple was torn apart when Jesus gave up His life, signalling the end of separation of God from mankind.

Yes, the tearing of that veil symbolises the beginning of a new era for all mankind, that is for all of us. The veil was once used to separate the Holy of holies where God resided in the Temple, and all the people. That veil represented the separation that was present between us and God, that is the barrier preventing us from approaching God. That barrier and veil was indeed sin, our sinfulness.

Jesus tore down that veil by His death, where He brought upon Himself, the punishments for the sins of the entire world. With that singular act, He had made us all worthy once again of God, and we would no longer be impeded on our way to the Lord our Creator and our God. And Jesus has given Himself to us, that from then on, we would live in Him and He in us. Through the Most Holy Eucharist, He had resolved to come and dwell within us, making us the new Temple of His Presence.

That is why, brothers and sisters in Christ, we ought to prepare, that we ensure daily cleanliness and purity of this holy Temple, that is our body and soul, as God has resided in all of us who believe in Him. We cannot contemplate to sin or commit any evil acts that will corrupt this holy Temples of ours, incompatible with God. Remember that without God we are nothing, and antagonising God is the last thing we all should think of doing.

That said, as mentioned earlier, Jesus promised us the coming end of times, and the fulfillment of salvation. He promised that we will not suffer death but receive new and eternal life, if we all remain faithful to Him. He will be a beautiful light as the sun of justice to all who believe and to all who are righteous in their ways. But to those who are wicked and keep wickedness and evil in their ways, their acts, and their thoughts, they will suffer greatly.

We should not be worried for the coming of the kingdom of God, brethren, for worrying bring about no good. Indeed, worry only distracts us from the real work that we have to do. And worry in this case, that is about our fate and our salvation, only highlight the nature of our self-centredness and our selfishness. We tend to become idle in worry and therefore fail to do what is expected from us.

We ought to love, and to show that love in our daily actions and deeds. We cannot be lax, brethren, for the coming of our Lord is known to Him alone, and that is why we must be ever ready, and ever prepared for His coming. No better way to do this, than to profess our faith daily to Him through real action and real dedication of love, of our hope, to our brethren, especially those who desperately are in need of them.

May the Lord therefore, the great sun of justice, the great and true Light of the world, shine His light upon us, on the path that we are to take, that we may keep faithfully to the path that He had shown us. Hence, we will not fall or go astray from the truth, and seek instead the lies of the devil, in the pleasures of the world. May God continue to love us, watch over us, and guide us as we approach towards His great kingdom. God bless us all. Amen.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013 : 32nd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Josaphat, Bishop and Martyr (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Wisdom 2 : 23 – Wisdom 3 : 9

Indeed God created man to be immortal in the likeness of His own nature, but the envy of the devil brought death to the world, and those who take his side shall experience death.

The souls of the just are in the hands of God and no torment shall touch them. In the eyes of the unwise they appear to be dead. Their going is held as a disaster; it seems that they lose everything by departing from us, but they are in peace.

Though seemingly they have been punished, immortality was the soul of their hope. After slight affliction will come great blessings, for God has tried them and found them worthy to be with Him; after testing them as gold in the furnace, He has accepted them as a holocaust.

At the time of His coming they will shine like sparks that run in the stubble. They will govern nations and rule over peoples, and the Lord will be their king forever. Those who trust in Him will penetrate the truth, those who are faithful will live with Him in love, for His grace and mercy are for His chosen ones.

Saturday, 5 October 2013 : 26th Week of Ordinary Time (Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green or White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we are again reminded of the great love that God has for all of us, the most beloved of His creations, as beloved children of God. We have disobeyed against Him and thus committed great sin before His eyes, and yet He continues to love us without end, and He even unconditionally gave Himself for us, His life and all, through the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross.

Through Jesus, mankind had been given a new hope, and a new light in Christ Himself, and they had been revealed a glimpse of heaven through Jesus, who showed them the path of salvation and new life, eternal life in God. He revealed the Lord’s long planned plan of salvation to His beloved people, to those who possessed the humility of heart to listen to the word of salvation, that is the Good News of Jesus.

To those who had listened to the Lord, and obeyed His commands, leading an upright and just life in this world, to those who had not gone astray in their path, the Lord had exalted them in glory, the glory of His majesty, and they become His beloved children, safe from the power of the devil, the great enemy and the deceiver of all.

The evil one was thrown down from heaven, where he was once the greatest angel of creation, and because of his pride, arrogance, and vanity, he was thrown down. He boasted that he would rise above the throne of God and rule over creation and yet he was made into nothing. He was struck, and not only once, but twice, by the power of God.

For Satan continued his rebellion, by ensuring that it is not just him and some of his fellow angels that fall into the sin of rebellion, but also mankind through the temptation of Eve by Satan-in-disguise, the deceitful snake. This made mankind to also fall into sin, and was cast out of heaven, of the beautiful garden of Eden God had prepared for them, His beloved.

It is in Christ and His coming into this world, that Satan was struck again, and this time for eternity, for all time. He was defeated with such finality, that he will not rise again, and his fate was sealed. For in Christ lies the fulfillment of God’s desire for mankind to be saved from the fate that awaits them that is death. In Christ is the final nail to the coffin of the devil, the final destruction of his rebellion, that mankind, whom Satan caused to fall into sin, now through Christ has the hope of redemption.

The anger of God was indeed aimed at us, but as much as He is angry with us, He remains loving and forgiving, and the fullness of His wrath is truly aimed at the deceiver himself, the devil, Satan, the old snake. It is His wish that all of us be freed from our bondage to that rebellious angel, one who thought that he is the greatest of all. We have been bonded to him ever since our forefathers chose to obey him instead of their true Master, the Lord our God.

That is why, brothers and sisters in Christ, we must not fear the anger of the Lord our God. Rather, let us use that knowledge of His anger as a warning and a reminder to all of us, how much the Lord loves us and cares for us, that He is angered by our trespasses and our indignant rebellion against His love. Yet, He is always merciful and His heart is always open and available to all of us, especially those of us who repent from our sinful ways and return back to He who loves us with all our sincerity and love.

Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, we should not fear the Lord anymore, and neither should we fear the devil, that great enemy of all. The former, is because He truly loves all of us, and punishes us or be angry with us, because He cares for us and our salvation, that we will not fall into eternal damnation, away from His love, out of which, there can be no escape. And the latter, because, through Jesus, the Lord had broken the chains that had enslaved us to the power of Satan. He had broken the chains of death through His own death on the cross. Christ had been triumphant, and He crushed the devil under His feet in glory.

Let us therefore, first, seek the Lord’s merciful love and forgiveness, baring all of ourselves and our hearts before Him, opening the deepest depths of our heart to Him. Let us then, allow His love to flow into us, and through us, that we be made into conduits of His love, through our words, deeds, and actions. We have to become the children of the light, and the children of love, that is God, and there is nothing better than our dedication to Him through our loving actions and words. May we continue to spread the love of God to all mankind. God bless us all. Amen.