Thursday, 19 October 2017 : 28th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. John de 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 11 : 47-54

At that time, Jesus said to the teachers of the Law, “A curse is on you, for you build monuments to the prophets your ancestors killed. So you approve and agree with what your ancestors did. Is it not so? They got rid of the prophets, and you build monuments to them!”

“For that reason the wisdom of God also said : I will send prophets and Apostles and these people will kill and persecute some of them. But the present generation will have to answer for the blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the foundation of the world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was murdered between the altar and the Sanctuary. Yes, I tell you, the people of this time will have to answer for them all.”

“A curse is on you, teachers of the Law, for you have taken the key of knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you prevented others from entering.”

As Jesus left that place, the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees began to harass Him, asking Him endless questions, setting traps to catch Him in something He might say.

Thursday, 19 October 2017 : 28th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. John de Brebeuf and St. Isaac Jogues, Priests and Companions, Martyrs, and St. Paul of the Cross, Priest (Psalm)

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

Psalm 129 : 1-2, 3-4, 5-7a

Out of the depths I cry to You, o YHVH, o YHVH, hear my voice! Let Your ears pay attention to the voice of my supplication.

If You should mark our evil, o YHVH, who could stand? But with You, is forgiveness, and for that You are revered.

I waited for YHVH, my soul waits; and I put my hope in His word. My soul expects YHVH more than watchmen, the dawn. O Israel, hope in YHVH.

Thursday, 19 October 2017 : 28th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. John de Brebeuf and St. Isaac Jogues, Priests and Companions, Martyrs, and St. Paul of the Cross, Priest (First Reading)

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

Romans 3 : 21-30a

But, now it has been revealed, altogether apart from the Law, as it was already foretold in the Law and the prophets : God makes us righteous by means of faith in Jesus Christ, and this is applied to all who believe, without distinction of persons.

Because all have sinned and all fall short of the glory of God; and all are graciously forgiven and made righteous, through the redemption effected in Christ Jesus. For God has given Him to be the Victim, Whose Blood obtains us forgiveness, through faith.

So God shows us, how He makes us righteous. Past sins are forgiven, which God overlooked till now. For, now, He wants to reveal His way of righteousness : how He is just, and how He makes us righteous, through faith in Jesus. Then, what becomes of our pride? It is excluded. How? Not through the Law and its observances, but through another Law, which is faith. For we hold, that people are in God’s grace, by faith, and not because of all the things ordered by the Law.

Otherwise, God would be the God of the Jews; but is He not God of pagan nations as well? Of course He is, for there is only one God.

Thursday, 12 October 2017 : 27th Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we listened to the words of the Scriptures speaking to us about our relationship with God, and how we ought to proceed forward in that relationship. In the Gospel reading we heard the Lord Jesus telling the people about how our relationships and friendships work. A friend will care for us, if we look for them for help. And what we have in the Lord our God, is more than just a friend.

A friend will help out of his or her friendship and good relationship with us, or at the very least, in order for them to get rid of the annoyance of having us asking them for help. But God is so much more than that, and He is always ready to love us. Then, we go on to the next part of the Gospel passage, in which the Lord Jesus told the people about a father who will love his child, and definitely will not bring harm to the child because he loved the child so much.

And the child just needs to ask the father for anything that he or she needs, and he will happily give it to them. He will not give the child anything that is harmful. It is therefore in this manner that the love of God is described, for God is truly like our father. He is indeed, according to the Lord Jesus, our Father Who is in heaven. He created every single one of us, and being His creations, we are also His beloved children.

If God had not loved us and cared for us, He would not have created us in the first place. The very reason why we live, and why we take in breath every single minute, every single second, is because of God’s love and grace. But many of us often do not realise this, and we forgot about God as we live our lives. Instead, we often remember Him only when we need Him, when we have something we want. And when we do not get what we want, we ended up being angry at God.

But God has always loved us in His own way, and He has blessed us with many things in life. It is often that we desire things that we do not really need, but God knows exactly what it is that we need. Yet, do we thank Him for all that He has given us? Or have we been often like children who became angry at their parents for not giving us what we wanted, and throw tantrums?

Let us reflect on these questions, and think about what we mankind can do, and should be doing in our respective lives. We should draw closer to the Lord, and trust in Him, and obey His commandments and laws. In the first reading today, God reminded us of His love for us, that if we are faithful to Him, our names will be recorded in the Book of Life, and all of us will be considered worthy of the glory which He has prepared for all of His faithful ones.

It will certainly not be easy to do God’s will, particularly as we live in this world filled with temptations and many challenges, for those who keep God’s words and live in His ways. Yet, we must persevere through, as if we fall away from God’s path, the only path forward for us will be towards our downfall. We need just to ask, and God will help us along the way, for we are not alone in this struggle, as God is always with us.

Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all commit ourselves anew to the Lord, that by our every actions, our every words and deeds, we will always glorify God, and walk righteously in His ways. May the Lord bless us always, and may He continue to protect us and guide us on the way towards His salvation. Amen.

Thursday, 12 October 2017 : 27th Week of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Luke 11 : 5-13

At that time, Jesus said to His disciples, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and goes to his house in the middle of the night and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves, for a friend of mine who is travelling has just arrived, and I have nothing to offer him.’ Maybe your friend will answer from inside, ‘Do not bother me now; the door is locked, and my children and I are in bed, so I cannot get up and give you anything.'”

“But I tell you, even though he will not get up and attend to you because you are a friend, yet he will get up because you are a bother to him, and he will give you all you need. And so I say to you, ‘Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For the one who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to him who knocks the door will be opened.”

“If your child asks for a fish, will you give him a snake instead? And if your child asks for an egg, will you give him a scorpion? If you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him.”

Thursday, 12 October 2017 : 27th Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 1 : 1-2, 3, 4 and 6

Blessed is the man who does not go where the wicked gather, or stand in the way of sinners, or sit where the scoffers sit! Instead, he finds delight in the Law of YHVH and meditates day and night on His commandments.

He is like a tree beside a brook producing its fruit in due season, its leaves never withering. Everything he does is a success.

But it is different with the wicked. They are like chaff driven away by the wind. For YHVH knows the way of the righteous but cuts off the way of the wicked.

Thursday, 12 October 2017 : 27th Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Malachi 3 : 13-20a

You say very harsh things about Me, says YHVH, and yet, you say : “What harsh things did we say against You?” You say : “It is useless to serve God. There is no benefit in observing His commandments or in leading an austere life for His sake. Happy are the shameless! Those who do evil succeed in everything; though they provoke God, they remain unharmed.”

Those were the very words of those who fear YHVH. YHVH listened and heard what they said. He ordered at once, that the names of those who respect Him and reverence His Name be written in a record. And He declared, “They will be Mine on the day I have already set. Then I shall care for them, as a father cares for his obedient son. And you will see the different fates of the good and the bad, those who obey God and those who disobey Him.”

The day already comes, flaming as a furnace. On that day, all the proud and evildoers will be burnt, like straw in the fire. They will be left without branches or roots. On the other hand, the sun of justice will shine upon you who respect My Name and bring health in is rays.