The lowest place

October 31, 2015 6:00 am

“…when you are invited, go and take the lowest place so that when the host comes to you he may say, ‘My friend, move up to a higher position.’ Then you will enjoy the esteem of your companions at the table. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” (LK 14: 10-11)

The good thing with “the lowest place” is that you know your limits. Starting from this position, you have two options:  you can just stay there “contemplating” your minor position or “move up to a higher position.” Humbleness means: I know very well my limits and my weaknesses, but I know even better the unlimited power of God’s invitation. “When you are invited,” start with the truth about you and your situation, and then let Our Lord help you “move up to a higher position.” The initiative is on His side. Not yours, His!

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart.” (Gospel Acclamation)

they kept silent

October 30, 2015 6:00 am

“‘Is it lawful to cure on the sabbath or not?’ But they kept silent; so he took the man and, after he had healed him, dismissed him.” (LK 14: 3-4)

How often this world “keeps silent,” when we need to stay courageously on the side of human suffering. It could be using IVF instead of taking care of a couple and helping them with a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment, prescribing contraception rather than teaching them the beauty of a woman’s cycle, like giving someone a sweater instead of a sandwich when they are hungry.

“My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; I know them, and they follow me.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Through him who loves us

October 29, 2015 6:00 am

“What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? As it is written:
For your sake we are being slain all the day; we are looked upon as sheep to be slaughtered. No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us.” (ROM 8: 35-37)

“The love of Christ” is stronger than anything else in this world, and no “anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword” can separate us from His love. And it is always about Him and His love and not about us and our ability to love. He always expects from us the best, but He is the One who makes this love possible and consistent.

“Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord. Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Whom He named Apostles

October 28, 2015 8:40 am

“When day came, he called his disciples to himself, and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles.” (LK 6: 13)

Our Lord “chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles,” and these Twelve are the foundation stones in the Church. Their mission was to preach the word of God, but more important was that they were to be very close to Jesus: “He called his disciples to himself.”

“We praise you, O God, we acclaim you as Lord; the glorious company of Apostles praise you.” (Gospel Acclamation)

In hope we are saved

October 27, 2015 6:00 am

“For in hope we were saved. Now hope that sees for itself is not hope. For who hopes for what one sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait with endurance.” (ROM 8: 24-25)

Someone called the three virtues—faith, hope and love—sisters. And the smallest one, in the middle of the two big ones, is hope. But she is the one who leads her bigger sisters. Neither love nor faith can help when there is no hope, who gives us strength to “wait with endurance.”

“Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth; you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the Kingdom.” (Gospel Acclamation)

When Jesus saw her

October 26, 2015 6:00 am

“And a woman was there who for eighteen years had been crippled by a spirit; she was bent over, completely incapable of standing erect. When Jesus saw her, he called to her and said, ‘Woman, you are set free of your infirmity.’ He laid his hands on her, and she at once stood up straight and glorified God.” (LK 13: 11-13)

We are watched, but not by law enforcement, speeding cameras or spy satellites. We are watched carefully by God, Who is Love and wants to “lay his hands on us,” on our weaknesses and limitations. He wants us “standing erect,” full of dignity and respect for God: “she at once stood up straight and glorified God.”

“Your word, O Lord, is truth; consecrate us in the truth.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Master, I want to see

October 25, 2015 6:00 am

“Jesus said to him in reply, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ The blind man replied to him, ‘Master, I want to see.’ Jesus told him, ‘Go your way; your faith has saved you.’ Immediately he received his sight and followed him on the way.” (MK 10: 51-52)

This is a very ironic situation: a blind man sees Jesus’ messianic identity more clearly than most people in Mark’s Gospel. Bartimaeus gives us a simple lesson: 1. if you are in a desperate need—call Jesus loudly; you will meet a lot of obstacles, but don’t give up. 2. Be focused on the answer—He will call you; be ready to leave your old sin habits, “throw aside your cloak.” 3. Be very specific—in front of Jesus name what you really need, “Master, I want to see.” 4. Be ready to leave your old life and open for a new life—“follow Him on the way.”

“Our Savior Jesus Christ destroyed death and brought life to light through the Gospel.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Fruit in the future

October 24, 2015 6:44 am

“‘For three years now I have come in search of fruit on this fig tree but have found none. So cut it down. Why should it exhaust the soil?’ He said to him in reply, ‘Sir, leave it for this year also, and I shall cultivate the ground around it and fertilize it; it may bear fruit in the future. If not you can cut it down.’” (LK 13: 7-9)

This world expects fruits on demand from us. We should be ready to answer to all needs. At the same time, we forget that we need time to grow; we need good ground and all kinds of supplementation. Our Lord is patient, full of respect and always supporting us.

“I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked man, says the Lord, but rather in his conversion that he may live.” (Gospel acclamation)

The willing is ready at hand

October 23, 2015 6:00 am

“The willing is ready at hand, but doing the good is not. For I do not do the good I want, but I do the evil I do not want.” (ROM 7: 18-19)

Our poor condition: “the willing is ready at hand, but doing the good is not.” So often we try so many times to do something good, but “I do the evil I do not want.” It happens within families, among couples and parents, within coworkers and in many other situations. God knows our condition and is always with us to support us, to help us and to bring us hope. Always we can ask for forgiveness and start again and again.

“Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth; you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the Kingdom.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Slaves of God

October 22, 2015 6:00 am

“But now that you have been freed from sin and have become slaves of God, the benefit that you have leads to sanctification, and its end is eternal life.” (ROM 6: 22)

“Slaves of God” are free from sin and as a benefit receive “eternal life.” Only God, who respects our dignity and freedom, “can lead us to sanctification” without humiliation. In this world only “slaves of God” are really free and full of dignity.

“I consider all thing so much rubbish that I may gain Christ and be found in him.” (Gospel Acclamation)