Saturday, April 11, 2020

This is the Day of the Easter Joy!

"For they did not yet understand the scripture that he had to rise from the dead." (John 20: 9).

Sunday 12th April 2020, Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.

The disciples of Jesus did not yet understand the testimony of Scripture that Jesus would be crucified, die and rise from the dead. Eye had never seen, nor ear heard nor did it ever enter their minds that such a thing is possible.

My brothers and my sisters, Happy Easter and welcome to the plan of God for our salvation and eternal life. Now what does it mean that Jesus Christ has risen from the dead?

#1 Jesus has conquered Sin.
#2 Jesus has conquered Fear.
#3 Jesus has conquered Death.
#4 Jesus is Lord and not Caesar.
#5 Abba Father has appointed Jesus the Judge of the Living and the Dead.

My brethren, this is the Good News. This is the cause of our Easter joy. To celebrate this great Feast, the Church decrees 50 days of continuous feasting till the Solemnity of Pentecost.

Alleluia! Alleluia! Jesus Christ our Pascal Lamb is truly risen! Alleluia!

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Friday, April 10, 2020

Holy Saturday, the Solemnity of Easter Vigil.

“Who will roll back the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” (Mark 16: 3).

Saturday 11 April 2020, Holy Saturday, the Solemnity of Easter Vigil.

Two women, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary got to the tomb of Jesus before the sun had risen. Where were the eleven Apostles? Even the two Marys who were the first to get to the tomb expected to see the dead Jesus in the tomb.

Jesus predicted His passion, death and resurrection three times before the grand events.  Yet no one of His disciples remembered. The Angel broke the news of the Resurrection to the two women.

“Do not be amazed! You seek Jesus of Nazareth, the crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Behold, the place where they laid him." (Mark 16: 6).

Mary Magdalene and Mary, the mother of James became the first witnesses of the Resurrection and were commissioned to "go and tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him, as he told you."

Jesus Christ our Passover has been sacrificed and has risen from the dead. He is Jesus, Emmanuel God with us. Come let us adore Him. Come let us receive Him in the Eucharist.

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Thursday, April 09, 2020

Good Friday 2020. This is not the execution of a criminal.

“We do not have the right to execute anyone.” (John 18: 31).

Friday 10th April 2020, Good Friday.

The Jewish leaders sees the death of Jesus on the Cross as the execution of a criminal.  “If he were not a criminal, we would not have handed him over to you.”
How do you see the death of Jesus on the Cross?

"It is love "to the end" that confers on Christ's sacrifice its value as redemption and reparation, as atonement and satisfaction. He knew and loved us all when he offered his life. Now "the love of Christ controls us, because we are convinced that one has died for all; therefore all have died." No man, not even the holiest, was ever able to take on himself the sins of all men and offer himself as a sacrifice for all. The existence in Christ of the divine person of the Son, who at once surpasses and embraces all human persons, and constitutes himself as the Head of all mankind, makes possible his redemptive sacrifice for all." (CCC 616).

We adore You O Christ and worship You because of Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world.

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Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Holy Thursday 2020, the Beginning of the Triduum.

"The Lord Jesus, on the night He was handed over, took bread, and, after he had given thanks, broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood." Do this in remembrance of me.” (1 Corinthians 11: 23 - 25)

Thursday 9th April 2020, Thursday of Holy Week (Holy Thursday) - the Beginning of Easter Triduum.

We pray to the Eternal Father that we may experience the effects of the salvation which is pledged to us by these mysteries.

"At the Last Supper, on the night he was betrayed, our Savior instituted the Eucharistic sacrifice of his Body and Blood. This he did in order to perpetuate the sacrifice of the cross throughout the ages until he should come again, and so to entrust to his beloved Spouse, the Church, a memorial of his death and resurrection: a sacrament of love, a sign of unity, a bond of charity, a Paschal banquet 'in which Christ is consumed, the mind is filled with grace, and a pledge of future glory is given to us.'" (CCC 1323).

We receive new life through the gift of the Body and Blood of Jesus. May we find full contentment in this meal.

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Tuesday, April 07, 2020

Every sin is a betrayal of trust and friendship.

“What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?” They paid him thirty pieces of silver,  and from that time on he looked for an opportunity to hand him over." (Matthew 26: 15 - 16).

Wednesday 8th April 2020, Wednesday of Holy Week.

Our key Scripture for today deals with the tough and ugly truth of betrayal. Every sin is a betrayal. Every betrayal is a sin against trust and friendship. He who says: "I have no sin is a liar."
For Judas, his price for betraying Jesus is thirty pieces of silver. What is your price for betraying Jesus? For working on Sunday? For that cruise holiday? That plumb job? That weekend at Las Vegas? Every sin has its price. In marketing, we say: "Put the right incentive on the promotion and the fish will bite the bait." So be humble my friend.

In God's most loving and merciful Providence, our Savior has given us two great Sacraments to deal with our sins:

#1 Sacrament of Reconciliation:
Medicine for the Journey. We journey to our permanent home through vast and dangerous forests. Snake bites, serious bruises from falls are the norm. Neglect the Sacrament of Reconciliation to your peril.

#2 The Eucharist:
Eucharist (Bread of life  and Food for the Journey). When you are on a long journey, you do well to pack adequate nutritious food.

The saints, our brethren who preceded us in this Journey of Faith know the value of these two Sacraments and they urge us to use them frequently.

Peter and Judas betrayed Jesus. Peter used the Sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist to regain the lost ground. Judas chose suicide because of pride. We have few days to the Most Solemn Feast of Easter. Let nothing keep you from full participation in the Solemnity.

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Monday, April 06, 2020

Give me the light and illumination of the Holy Spirit.

"I will make you the light of the nations so that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth." (Isaiah 49: 6).

Tuesday 7th April 2020, Tuesday of Holy Week.

Abba Father, give me the light and illumination of the Holy Spirit that I may be a light for You everywhere.
You are so true and so faithful my God. Your precious and faithful promises are my security and protection.

"In you, O Lord, I take refuge;
let me never be put to shame.
Be a rock where I can take refuge,
a mighty stronghold to save me;
for you are my rock, my stronghold."
(Cf Psalm 71: 1 - 17)

Like Isaiah on this Tuesday of Holy Week, we pray with expectant faith for the grace to be a light that shines for Jesus in our homes and work.

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Sunday, April 05, 2020

Mary of Bethany, the unassuming star.

"Mary took a liter of costly perfumed oil made from genuine aromatic nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and dried them with her hair; the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil."  (John 12: 3).

Monday 6th April 2020, Monday of Holy Week.

Six days will be the Passover; Jesus visited the home of Martha, Mary and Lazarus, His very good friends. Perhaps to enjoy one last good meal and wine in Martha's Vineyard before His Passion. The star of the story today is not the matriarch, Martha whose hospitality is proverbial nor their apparently recluse brother, Lazarus.

The star is Mary who performed an outlandish gesture to demonstrate her love for Jesus. She broke a vial of what may be considered the very equivalent of the top line of Pierre Chardin and poured the oozing aromatic liquid on the feet of Jesus and wiped the feet with her long hairs. While some guests criticized this apparent waste, Jesus was very pleased and spoke up for Mary.

Who is Mary? Mary is here a type of the follower of Jesus who is marked by the following qualities:
#1 Total and radical commitment.
#2 Total self-giving.
#3 Total consecration (set apart) to Jesus and His cause.

Let us consider an example of the above commitment. St Ignatius Loyola of the Society of Jesus is a good example. See below his heart's greatest desire and objective:

+ To know the Heart of Jesus intimately.
+ To love Him passionately.
+ To follow Jesus everywhere.

We are today in the last week of Lent 2020. Where are you in the Journey of knowing Jesus more intimately so that you can love Him more and serve Him everywhere?

"Praise and honour to you, Lord Jesus! Hail to you, our King! You alone have had compassion on our sins."

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