Saturday, October 17, 2020

What belongs to Caesar and what belongs to God.

“So give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.”  (Matthew 22: 21).

Sunday 18th October 2020, 29th Week in Ordinary Time is Mission Sunday 2020.

The Church world-wide celebrates Mission Sunday today. The Gospel for today reminds us of the existence of two kingdoms living side by side. There is the Kingdom of God whose seed on earth is the Church. There is also the kingdom of Caesar with its goals and methods often contrary to the mission of the Church.

The Pharisees ask Jesus whether they should pay tax to the government or not. Where should our loyalty be? Jesus used the trick question to teach us a vital lesson. Yes we owe the government lawful taxes. But as for the kingdom of God, we must seek it first and its righteousness. If we do this, everything will fall into place. The taxes to Caesar, our daily bread and all we need will be guaranteed, Jesus promises. (Cf Matthew 6: 33).

Mission Sunday celebrates the truth that the Church exists to evangelize. The Church is missionary in its deepest nature. How missionary are you in your thoughts and prayers? St Therese of Lisieux, the Little Flower never stepped out of her convent, yet she is the patron saint of missionaries. How? She carried the mission fields and work in her thoughts and prayers. She taught that prayers could be a vital contribution to the mission. We all can pray for the missions. We all can make some financial contributions from time to time towards mission work.

Be missionary.

Daily Bible Verse @

Friday, October 16, 2020

The Feast of St Ignatius of Antioch, Father of the Church.

"I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before others the Son of Man will acknowledge before the angels of God.  But whoever denies me before others will be denied before the angels of God." (Luke 12: 8 - 9).

Saturday 17th October 2020, 28th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of a giant of our faith: St Ignatius of Antioch. (+ 107). Syrian. Bishop and Martyr. Ordained Bishop by St Peter himself. Father of the Church. Ground to pieces by wild beasts under the persecution of Emperor Trajan.

Why is St Ignatius of Antioch so revered by the Church? To be ordained Bishop by the Apostle Peter is a big deal. But there are other reasons. During his journey from Antioch to Rome under heavy armed guards, Ignatius composed 7 extraordinary letters. These letters are the earliest authoritative teaching on the Eucharist, the hierarchy of the Church, etc. I was shocked to watch a prominent Evangelical pastor, Dr X last week declare on Christian television that it is God's will for the fragmentation of the Church and the existence of over 60,000 churches. Does he know about St Ignatius of Antioch and these 7 letters?

Ignatius was grounded by the iron teeth of wild beasts because He acknowledged Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior before Emperor Trajan. Jesus made another big promise in today's Gospel Reading of which I can bear witness in my experience:

"When they take you before synagogues and before rulers and authorities, do not worry about how or what your defense will be or about what you are to say.  For the Holy Spirit will teach you at that moment what you should say.” (Luke 12: 11 - 12).
My personal favorite title for the Holy Spirit because of experience of the fulfillment of this promise is: The Voice that Speaks in Court. The Holy Spirit has enabled me speak with wisdom and courage when I needed it most.

Below is St Ignatius of Antioch in his own words:

“Let me be food for the wild beasts for they are my way to God. I am God’s wheat and shall be ground by their teeth so that I may become Christ’s pure bread. Pray to Christ for me that the animals will be the means of making me a sacrificial victim for God.” (St Ignatius of Antioch).

Daily Bible Verse @

Thursday, October 15, 2020

The Feast of St Margaret Mary Alacoque, the Visionary of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

"Are not five sparrows sold for two small coins? Yet not one of them has escaped the notice of God.  Even the hairs of your head have all been counted. Do not be afraid. You are worth more than many sparrows." (Luke 12: 6 - 7).

Friday 16th October 2020, 28th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Margaret Mary Alacoque (1647 - 1690). St Margaret is the French Visitation Nun that brought the world the private revelations of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Today is also the feast of St Hedwig (1173 - 1243). Wife of the Duke of Poland and mother of 7 children. After the death of her husband, Hedwig took the habit of a Nun and lived the rest of her life in a Cistercian monastery that she and her late husband had founded.

Our key Scripture for today has very important consoling message. If you are prone to worry, make many copies of it and place them in your bedroom, restroom, kitchen, etc. Glance at the healing message from time to time during the day and night. In 60 days, you will begin to experience peace, joy and contentment and a lessening of anxieties, fears and worries. Such is the power of the word of God applied daily with faith and purpose.

The saints we celebrate today overcame the handicap of fear, worry and doubt by trusting completely the promises of Jesus like the one we have today from Luke 12: 6 - 7.

Below is a quote from St Margaret Mary Alacoque. She shares her secret of peace, joy, contentment and tranquility.

"Rely entirely on God with perfect confidence in his goodness, which never forsakes those who, distrusting themselves, hope in him. Do not be afraid to abandon yourself unreservedly to his loving Providence, for a child cannot perish in the arms of a Father who is omnipotent." (St Margaret Mary Alacoque).

For the Prayer of Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the 12 Promises of Jesus to those who show devotion to His Sacred Heart which Jesus authorized Margaret Mary to make public, click the link below:

Daily Bible Verse @

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

The Feast of St Teresa of Avila

"Woe to you, scholars of the law! You have taken away the key of knowledge. You yourselves did not enter and you stopped those trying to enter.” (Luke 11: 52).

Thursday 15th October 2020, 28th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of a great woman: St Teresa of Jesus, popularly known as St Teresa of Avila. (1515 - 1582). Spanish Carmelite and great Reformer. She was a mystic and great spiritual writer. She is one of the four women to be proclaimed Doctor of the Church.

What do you make of our key Scripture for today with regard to St Teresa whose feast we celebrate today? Coincidence or prophetic? There are so many doctors or scholars of the law in the Church but there are only 35 Doctors of the Church. What is the difference? Look at the life and work of St Teresa of Avila and compare it to the academic doctors of theology in the Church you know.

The teaching of Teresa aims at bringing you to Jesus. She wants you to know Jesus more, so that you can love Him and serve Him more. Teresa and other Doctors of the Church are deeply interested in your eternal destiny. The academic doctors of theology are often speculative and not explicit of their intentions to evangelize. This is why the scholars of the law did not take the criticism of Jesus lightly:
"When he [Jesus] left [after criticizing them], the scribes and Pharisees began to act with hostility toward him and to interrogate him about many things, for they were plotting to catch him at something he might say." (Luke 11: 53 - 54].

Here is one of the great maxims of St Teresa of Avila. I read it every morning so that the truth will penetrate my soul:

"Let nothing trouble you,
let nothing frighten you.
All things are passing;
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things.
He who possesses God lacks nothing: God alone suffices."  (St Teresa of Avila).

St Teresa of Avila pray for us.

Daily Bible Verse @

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

When you live in the Spirit, you will enjoy continuous inspiration and power.

"If we live in the Spirit, let us also follow the Spirit." (Galatians 5: 25 NABRE).

Wednesday 14th October 2020, 28th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Callistus (+222).Pope and Martyr. How does history remember Pope St Callistus? From slave to pope to martyr. Pope St Callistus reminds us of our current Pontiff, Pope Francis. Callistus was vehemently opposed by Bishops, clergy and theologians because of his uncompromising stand that the Church must show mercy and forgive even the worst of sinners. This struggle in the Church with the Rigorist faction outlived St Callistus who was martyred by Emperor Alexander Severus.

We continue with the Letter to the Galatians in our key Scripture for today from the first Reading. Look at four different translations of the verse below:

#1 "If we live in the Spirit, let us also follow the Spirit." (Galatians 5: 25 NABRE).

#2 "Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit." (NIV).

#3 "Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives." (NLT)

#4 "If we [claim to] live by the [Holy] Spirit, we must also walk by the Spirit [with personal integrity, godly character, and moral courage—our conduct empowered by the Holy Spirit]." (AMP).

#1, the New American Revised Version (the authorized translation for the Liturgy) renders our key Scripture thus: "If we live in the Spirit..."

#2 to #4 translations assume that you, I mean "You" reading this knows the Spirit and is reminding you what should be taken for granted. Are you aware that two different spirits are continually at war in you? The one you feed more wins. How do you feed the good spirit so that you win more the battles of life?
#1 Daily Prayer: Set time, set place and set intention.
#2 Daily word of God. Set reading plan. The daily Mass Readings from the Roman Missal are great as a reading plan. You read the Scripture with the Church. Same daily Scripture everywhere on earth.
#3 Daily examination of conscience. Critical for checking whether the spirit you are feeding is growing or not.

When you follow the above plan, the life of grace will begin to manifest in you. It will be seen by anyone who knows you. People will observe: "You have changed. You are more peaceful, joyful and calm. What happened to you?

If you want to learn more about the Holy Spirit power, the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit, the Sacrament of Confirmation, click the link below:

Daily Bible Verse @

The ABC of the Holy Spirit.

ABC of the Holy Spirit:

Prayer, Gifts and Fruits. The Sacrament of Confirmation. 

Powerful Holy Spirit Prayer. Pray at the beginning of Prayer or tasks. 

"Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of Your faithful and kindle in us the fire of Your love. 

Send forth Your Spirit and we shall be recreated 

--And You will renew the face of the earth. 

Let us pray: 

O God, Who did instruct the hearts of Your faithful people by the Light of Your Holy Spirit, grant that by the same Spirit we may be truly wise and ever rejoice in His consolation. We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen."

7 Gifts of the Holy Spirit:

1. Wisdom


3. Counsel 

4. Fortitude 

5. Knowledge 

6. Piety

7. Fear of the Lord  

How does one come by these gifts?

Desire and Prayer. 

Ask, Seek, Knock. 

Fruits of the Holy Spirit : 

1. Charity

 2. Joy 

3. Peace 

4. Patience 

5. Kindness 

6. Goodness 

7. Generosity 

8. Gentleness 

9. Faithfulness 

10. Modesty 

11. Self-control 

12. Chastity   

 "I remind you to stir into flame the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands."  (2 Timothy 1: 6).

Stir into flame the gift of God. 

How? Prayer expands your desire. Study: good books on the Holy Spirit. 

"For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of power and love and self-control."  (2 Timothy 1: 7).

Holy Spirit is:

**Spirit of power. 

**Spirit of love. 

**Spirit of self control. 

"But you will receive the power of the Holy Spirit which will come upon you, and then you will be my witnesses not only in Jerusalem but throughout Judaea and Samaria, and indeed to earth’s remotest end.." (Acts 1:8) 

▪ The Holy Spirit is the power behind all Christian witnessing 

▪ The Holy Spirit is the source and power of evangelization. 

* Power is the predominant attribute of the Holy Spirit.

Character is Destiny.

 Through His gifts and fruits, the Holy Spirit is transforming our character bit by bit (incrementally). As He transforms our character, He is transforming our Destiny. 

Can the Holy Spirit make a difference in our lives?

You will see, dance for joy and give testimony. 

The Sacrament of Confirmation:

 Symbols, Effects, Minister.


 Anointing with oil, laying of hands. 


The principal effect of the sacrament of Confirmation is: “the full outpouring of the Holy Spirit as once granted to the apostles on the day of Pentecost. 

From this fact, Confirmation brings an increase and deepening of baptismal grace:

- it roots us more deeply in the divine filiation which makes us cry, “Abba! Father!”

- it unites us more firmly to Christ;

- it increases the gifts of the Holy Spirit in us;

- it renders our bond with the Church more perfect;

- it gives us a special strength of the Holy Spirit to spread and defend the faith by word and action as true witnesses of Christ, to confess the name of Christ boldly, and never to be ashamed of the Cross.”


 The original and ordinary minister of Confirmation is the bishop. When warranted by circumstances, the bishop may give to priests the faculty to administer the Sacrament. 

PRAYER on Pentecost Sunday:

On this day of Pentecost, the Church is filled with joy. Strengthened with measureless hope, we pray to Christ, who is calling his Church together in the Holy Spirit.

– Lord, renew the face of the earth.

Lord Jesus, raised on the cross, you poured out the water of rebirth for the life of the world.

    Quicken the life of all men with the gift of the Spirit.

– Lord, renew the face of the earth.

Raised up to God’s right hand, you bestowed on the apostles the Father’s Gift;

    your Church now waits for the same Gift, the same hope.

– Lord, renew the face of the earth.

You breathed your Spirit upon the apostles, and gave them the power of forgiveness:

    set all men free today from the prison of sin.

– Lord, renew the face of the earth.

You promised to send us the Spirit of truth, that we might become your heralds throughout the world.

    Through his presence in the Church may we bear faithful witness to you.

– Lord, renew the face of the earth.

(Liturgy of the Hours (Lauds) Pentecost Day). 

Monday, October 12, 2020

Where is the Holy Spirit in your life?

"For through the Spirit, by faith, we await the hope of righteousness." (Galatians 5: 5).

Tuesday 13th October 2020, 28th Week in Ordinary Time.

In the Letter to the Galatians, we have been exploring: The Holy Spirit, faith and grace. These are principles that make living the Christian life easy and delightful.

Where is the Holy Spirit in your life? In Baptism we received Him. But have you activated Him? You activate Him by faith which means by trusting in the promise of Christ. You cannot receive or activate the Holy Spirit by work. Only by faith.

The Holy Spirit in us is transforming us degree by degree. He causes us to wait in patience for the work of transformation to be advanced in us until we become the holy children of God. This is salvation. The saints have reached this stage. They live by faith and not by sight or feeling. And certainly not dependent on their works.

"The word of God is something alive and active: it can judge secret emotions and thoughts." (Hebrews 4: 12)

Daily Bible Verse @

Sunday, October 11, 2020

He set me free from my addictions.

"It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery." (Galatians 5: 1).

Monday 12th October 2020, 28th Week in Ordinary Time.

Rejoice brothers and sisters, we are free. The Son has truly made us free. Free from what?
#1 Free from compulsive habits of sin: pornography, lying, cheating, anger.
#2 Free from crippling fears, worries and doubts.
#3 Free from the spirit of Unbelief that denies us all the benefits of our filial adoption as the children of the Father and brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ.

Here is how the Son freed me from almost two decades of tobacco addiction. It was the eve of Ash Wednesday. A fine Tuesday afternoon. I was amongst friends and suddenly I said: "Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent. I have done nothing in Lent for many years. I will not smoke tomorrow." Laughter broke out among my friends. "Impossible! Impossible!" They intoned. I did not smoke on Ash Wednesday. And Thursday, Friday, Saturday... In exactly 7 days, the desire for tobacco was removed from me.

How did it happen? It was by His merciful love that Christ set me free. At the time, I did not have even filthy works or otherwise I could point to. Jesus did it so that all the honor and glory should come to Him. Also that I could bear witness to His merciful love as I am doing today. I may also add that a couple of years later, Jesus again intervened in my life and set me free completely from alcoholism.

What is your addiction? Whatever it is, the Son wants to set you free.

"If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand? But with you is found forgiveness,
O God of Israel." (Psalm 129: 3 - 4).

Daily Bible Verse @