How much more…

October 6, 2016 7:43 am

“If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him?” (LK 11: 13)

Luke presents three episodes concerned with prayer. The first, which we read yesterday, recounted Jesus teaching his disciples the Christian communal prayer, the “Our Father”; today we hear the second—about the importance of persistence in prayer and the third—about the effectiveness of prayer. Whatever we receive from Him is always much, much more, than we can expect because His love is total and unconditional.

“Open our hearts, O Lord, to listen to the words of your Son.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

 

 

Lord, teach us to pray

July 24, 2016 6:00 am

“Lord, teach us to pray just as John taught his disciples.” (LK 11: 1)

Prayer is the way that we can be in relationship with God, like dialog is the way that we can be in relationship with our family, especially between spouses. Dialog is not easy—we remember subject no. 5 from our Program 1—so many traps and so many mistaken patterns of interpretation in our inner dialog. It could be the same problem with prayer—a wish list, a list of claims about a badly organized world, or an amazing occasion to close our eyes 😉 and rest a bit. What we can do is to ask Jesus—“teach us to pray”! He will lead us, guide us and help us to be with God in real relationship when we respect each other and do everything to be a sincere gift of selves like children of God.

“You have received a Spirit of adoption, through which we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’” (Gospel Acclamation) 

 

Ask the master of the harvest

July 7, 2015 9:49 am

“The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.” (MT 9: 37-38)

This request from God was the Church’s concern from the beginning: “the harvest is abundant but the laborers are few.” We depend on priests because they bring us the most Holy Eucharist and the sacrament of Penance. But Our Lord needs our prayer: “so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.” The more abundant the harvest is, the more prayer we need.

“I am the good shepherd, says the Lord; I know my sheep, and mine know me.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Your sins are forgiven

July 2, 2015 8:26 am

When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Courage, child, your sins are forgiven.” (MT 9, 2)

The most important thing is “forgiven sins.” More important than health. Because “sins” means: I do not need God; I have better plan for myself; I am independent and self-sufficient. When we accept God’s unique gift of forgiveness and mercy, we can base our life with Him and with our brothers and sisters on true values: trust, relationship, protection, dependence and love.

“God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation”. (Gospel Acclamation)

The prayer was heard in the glorious presence of Almighty God

June 3, 2015 7:00 am

“At that very time, the prayer of these two suppliants was heard in the glorious presence of Almighty God. So Raphael was sent to heal them both: to remove the cataracts from Tobit’s eyes, so that he might again see God’s sunlight; and to marry Raguel’s daughter Sarah to Tobit’s son Tobiah, and then drive the wicked demon Asmodeus from her.” (TB 3: 16-17)

“So Raphael was sent to heal them both” because God had a much bigger plan for them, and His answer was not for what they asked but for what they really needed. The same thing happens with us. When we ask, we see our situation only from our perspective, but our prayer is “heard in the glorious presence of Almighty God” and fortunately for us from a totally different perspective.

“I am the resurrection and the life, says the Lord; whoever believes in me will never die.” (Gospel Acclamation)

We would like to see Jesus

March 22, 2015 2:11 pm

“Some Greeks who had come to worship at the Passover Feast came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and asked him, ‘Sir, we would like to see Jesus.’” (JN 12: 20-21)

They were Greeks, not Jews, but “had come to worship.” Without coming to worship, they would never have asked to see Jesus. The less we pray, the less we see the need to be with Him. The more we pray, the more we see the importance of Our Lord’s presence in our lives, homes, work and relationships. When He is invited into our homes, worship becomes part of our lives too.

“Whoever serves me must follow me, says the Lord; and where I am, there will my servant be.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Ash Wednesday

February 18, 2015 8:00 am

“Rend your hearts, not your garments, and return to the LORD, your God. For gracious and merciful is he, slow to anger, rich in kindness, and relenting in punishment.” (Jl 2: 13)

“Return to the LORD, your God” not to our own vision of God. Because we are created in His image and His likeness, we are not only responsible to remember this but also responsible to keep this image and likeness vivid and alive. “Return to the LORD” is a program for our whole lives, but especially for Lent, when we are invited to imitate Him in His graciousness, mercy, farsightedness, kindness and forgiveness. Is it a program for me?

“If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Moved with pity for the crowd

February 14, 2015 8:00 am

“My heart is moved with pity for the crowd, because they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat. If I send them away hungry to their homes, they will collapse on the way, and some of them have come a great distance.” (Mk 8: 2-3)

Our Lord takes care of so many things in our lives: not only when we are sick, or alone, or abandoned, but also when we are “on the way” or when “some of us have come a great distance.” At that time it was bread and fish, but now it is He Himself with His word. His word is an answer for all our needs. Let Him come to our hearts and make miracles.

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

Speak plainly

February 13, 2015 8:00 am

“And people brought to him a deaf man who had a speech impediment and begged him to lay his hand on him. He took him off by himself away from the crowd. He put his finger into the man’s ears and, spitting, touched his tongue;
then he looked up to heaven and groaned, and said to him, ‘Ephphatha!’ (that is, ‘Be opened!’). And immediately the man’s ears were opened, his speech impediment was removed, and he spoke plainly.” (Mk 7: 32-35)

All of us have some “speech impediment.” Sometimes it is closed ears, not being able to listen to the requests or needs of my neighbors; sometimes it is using the tongue all the time with sarcasm or seeing only “my point of view,” and at other times, it is incessant groaning that nobody takes care of us. It is very good if we have friends who will beg “Our Lord to lay his hands on us.” Our Lord, so respectful and very delicate, will take us “by himself away from the crowd and will say to us, ‘Ephphatha!’ (that is, ‘Be opened!’).” It is so good when we can speak plainly: with gentleness, respect, freedom, creativity, and joy, having time not only to speak but also to listen… Speak plainly.

“Open our hearts, O Lord, to listen to the words of your Son.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Touch only the tassel on His cloak

February 9, 2015 5:00 am

Homily, 9th of February 2015

Touch only the tassel on His cloak

“Whatever villages or towns or countryside he entered, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak; and as many as touched it were healed.” (Mk 6: 56)

How happy we are when we have daily access not only to “the tassel on his cloak” but also to He Himself personally through the sacraments, and especially the Eucharist. We remember that in His wounds we are healed. When we go the Mass, we can be touched by His love and His Body and Blood—“and as many as touched Him were healed.”

“Jesus preached the Gospel of the Kingdom and cured every disease among the people.” (Gospel Acclamation)

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