whoever wishes to be great among you

February 28, 2018 6:00 am

“You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and the great ones make their authority over them felt. But it shall not be so among you. Rather, whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant; whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave. Just so, the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (MT 20: 25-28) 

It is normal that we dream about being recognized as a great person—in the eyes of our parents and teachers, children and spouses, coworkers and bosses. For heaven our greatness is not based on our achievements and scores, but on our ability to recognize the dignity of our brothers and sisters and our desire to serve them—“whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant.” 

“I am the light of the world, says the Lord; whoever follows me will have the light of life.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

May become white as snow

February 27, 2018 6:00 am

“Though your sins be like scarlet, they may become white as snow; though they be crimson red, they may become white as wool.” (IS 1: 18) 

This is what happens to our sins when we come to Our Lord and ask Him for forgiveness. He always takes care of us and always makes us better after meeting with Him. 

“Cast away from you all the crimes you have committed, says the LORD, and make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful

February 26, 2018 11:03 am

“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Stop judging and you will not be judged. Stop condemning and you will not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven.” (LK 6: 36-37) 

This is the essence of the Gospel, of the Good News and especially for Lent: “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” We know perfectly how good God is to us. When we consider our sins, repeated mistakes and how much we have disappointed Him by our actions or thoughts, we can only be so grateful that He IS a merciful Father. And we need to imitate Him: be merciful, forgive… 

“Your words, Lord, are Spirit and life; you have the words of everlasting life.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

This is my beloved Son. Listen to him. 

February 25, 2018 6:00 am

“Then a cloud came, casting a shadow over them; from the cloud came a voice,  ‘This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.’ Suddenly, looking around, they no longer saw anyone but Jesus alone with them.” (MK 9: 7-8)

We are seeing today the love between father and son, their trust and faith; the love of Abraham for Isaac and for the Father. To God the Father, we are His beloved children. He takes care, He protects–and most importantly—He loves. 

“From the shining cloud the Father’s voice is heard: This is my beloved Son, listen to him.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

Agreement with the Lord

February 24, 2018 6:00 am

“Today you are making this agreement with the LORD: he is to be your God and you are to walk in his ways and observe his statutes, commandments and decrees, and to hearken to his voice.” (DT 26: 17) 

Our Lord makes us “equal”: we “are making this agreement with the LORD.” Who are we that we can have an “agreement with the Lord?” He promised to be our God, and He expects from us only to be close to Him. All of God’s expectations are good for us–help us, protect us and lead us to Him and to heaven. 

“Behold, now is a very acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

Go first and be reconciled with your brother

February 23, 2018 6:00 am

“Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift.” (MT 5: 23-24)

It is so good when our “spiritual” lives are not separated from our “daily” lives. It is good when we are the same: in front of Him, respecting Our Lord and respecting our brothers. Reconciliation is about our integrity, being reconciled with Him and with our brothers. 

“Cast away from you all the crimes you have committed, says the LORD, and make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

You are the Christ—you are Peter

February 22, 2018 6:00 am

“Simon Peter said in reply, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.’ Jesus said to him in reply, ‘Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.”” (MT 16: 16-18)

Everything in our lives we received from Our Lord; He gave us life, He gave us redemption, He gave us purpose and supports us all the time in our mission. When we are away from Him or when we don’t recognize His presence in our lives, we live only with our small names and our small missions. We are missing something big we are called to be. When Peter recognized the truth about Jesus, he could receive his new name and his new mission.

“You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church; the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

When God saw by their actions

February 21, 2018 6:00 am

“When God saw by their actions how they turned from their evil way, he repented of the evil that he had threatened to do to them; he did not carry it out.” (JON 3: 10)

We are body and soul. Our bodily actions are important because they show what is in our hearts. We can show, through our actions, “how we turned from our evil way.” We can show this not only to God but also to our friends, coworkers and relatives in our homes and offices. We can inspire others. 

“Even now, says the LORD, return to me with your whole heart for I am gracious and merciful.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

Just as the rain and snow come down

February 20, 2018 6:00 am

“Just as from the heavens the rain and snow come down and do not return there till they have watered the earth, making it fertile and fruitful, giving seed to the one who sows and bread to the one who eats, so shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth; it shall not return to me void, but shall do my will, achieving the end for which I sent it.” (IS 55: 10-11)

Every word of God comes with a mission to help us, to protect us and to lead us. When we listen to Him, when we spend time together, reflecting on God’s word, and when we put His words into action, we are “making it fertile and fruitful… achieving the end for which God sent it. “ 

“One does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes forth from the mouth of God.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

One of these least brothers of mine

February 19, 2018 6:00 am

“And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.’” (MT 25: 40) 

We can’t truly say that we love Our Lord if we can’t show this love to our brothers and sisters. “Whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.” We are for Him all brothers and sisters, and when we feel so vulnerable, damaged or broken, we can identify ourselves with “these least brothers” of Him. Every gesture, look or word full of gentleness goes also to Him. 

“Behold, now is a very acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” (Gospel Acclamation)

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