Saturday, October 24, 2020

Do not molest the widow, orphan and immigrant.

“You shall not molest or oppress an alien, for you were once aliens yourselves in the land of Egypt. You shall not wrong any widow or orphan." (Exodus 22: 20).

Sunday 25th October 2020, 30th Week in Ordinary Time.

In the Gospel for this Sunday from Matthew 22: 34 - 40, the Pharisees asked Jesus which commandment is the greatest. Jesus went beyond their narrow standard in His answer:  "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’  This is the first and great commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’  On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22: 37 - 40).

In our key Scripture for today from Exodus 22: 20 - 26, we read of the magna carta of love of neighbor: the poor, the weak, the sick, the homeless, the hungry. All these are represented by the  immigrants, orphans and widows. God commands: Do not oppress or molest them. To oppress or molest them is to break all the laws in the Decalogue.

If we consider this law oppressive, then God reminds us: "You were once aliens residing in the land of Egypt." Right? What is the incontestable reason for pardoning someone who has offended you? You were forgiven a debt of $10 million. Can't you forgive someone who owes you $500?

Our Father in Heaven, increase our faith, hope and love. Make us love the immigrants, the orphans and widows as You command us,
so that we may merit what you promise.

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Friday, October 23, 2020

The Feast of St Anthony Mary Claret

“Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were greater sinners than all other Galileans?  By no means! But I tell you, if you do not repent, you will all perish as they did!" (Luke 13: 2 - 3).

Saturday 24th October 2020, 29th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Anthony Mary Claret (1807 - 1870). Spanish missionary and Archbishop of Santiago, Cuba. He founded the Missionary Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (Claretians).

St Anthony Mary Claret was no stranger to the type of cruelty Pilate perpetrated on the Jews in the Gospel Reading for today's Liturgy. The Jews reported to Jesus how Pontius Pilate massacred the Jews inside the Temple. They expected great sympathy from Jesus but He said:

“Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were greater sinners than all other Galileans?  By no means! But I tell you, if you do not repent, you will all perish as they did!  Or those eighteen people who were killed when the tower at Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than everyone else who lived in Jerusalem?  By no means! But I tell you, if you do not repent, you will all perish as they did!” (Luke 13: 2 - 5).

Jesus took the opportunity of this encounter with the Jews to teach a necessary lesson to them and to us: We must always be READY to die any moment.  Death can come suddenly without warning like a thief in the night.

How do we prepare ourselves for sudden and unexpected death?
#1 Constant prayer is the best and perhaps the only means of vigilance. St Alphonsus Liguori says that he who prays is saved. He who does not pray is lost.

Added to prayer as a means of vigilance is daily word of God and Sacrament of Reconciliation. Since one may not be able to partake of the Sacrament of Reconciliation daily, the daily examination of conscience is a necessity. 1 Corinthians 13: 4 - 7 is a short Examen one can use every day.

To learn more about the Examination of Conscience, click the link below:

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Thursday, October 22, 2020

Feast of St John Capistrano.

"You hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky; why do you not know how to interpret the present time?" (Luke 12: 56).

Friday 23rd October 2020, 29th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St John Capistrano.  (1386 -1456). Italian Franciscan Priest. His charismatic preaching brought about great revival in the countries of Eastern Europe. John was one of the few clerics in history who led an army into battle. He did so to defend Europe against the menacing advances of the Turks.

Jesus implies in His blunt remarks to the crowd in our key Scripture from the Gospel of today that they should know how to interpret the signs of the times. It is easy to tell if there will be rain or snow. Is it easy to know with any certainty what the pandemics mean for us?
Why is it happening?
When will it end?
Are we going to survive it?
How many people will perish?
What shall we do to help ourselves?

All these are grave questions that impact the signs of the times. If Jesus says we know the answers to these questions, I believe Jesus knows what He is talking about. Where do we begin the search? His word. The Bible. The word of God contains all the mysteries and answers that relate to our life and salvation.
Jesus says that it is the gracious and mysterious will of the Father to reveal these mysteries to the childlike.

Two Scriptures may give us a clue:
#1 The Lord's Prayer: (Matthew 6: 9 - 13).
#2 SeekFirst (Matthew 6: 33 - 34).

If you want to learn more about the Lord's Prayer and how to use to discern the signs of the times, click the link below:

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Meditation on Our Father


#1.  I cannot say OUR, if my religion has no room for others and their needs.

#2.  I cannot say FATHER, if I do not demonstrate this relationship in daily living.

#3. I cannot say WHO IS IN HEAVEN, if all my interests and pursuits are in earthly things.

#4.  I cannot say HALLOWED BE YOUR NAME, if I, who is called by His name, am not holy. 

#5.  I cannot say YOUR KINGDOM COME, if I am unwilling to give up my own sovereignty and accept the righteous reign of God. 

#6.  I cannot say YOUR WILL BE DONE, if I am unwilling or resentful of having it in my life. [Embrace Your gracious and mysterious will in everything, always and everywhere.] 

#7.  I cannot say ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN, unless I am truly ready to give myself to His service here and now.  [SeekFirst the Kingdom: Matthew 6: 33]. 

#8.  I cannot say GIVE US TODAY OUR DAILY BREAD, without expending an honest effort for it or by ignoring the genuine needs of those around me. 

#9.  I cannot say FORGIVE ME MY SINS AS I FORGIVE THOSE THAT SIN AGAINST ME, if I continue to harbor a grudge against anyone. 

#10.  I cannot say LEAD ME NOT INTO TEMPTATION, if I deliberately choose to remain in a situation where I am likely to be tempted. 

#11.  I cannot say DELIVER US FROM EVIL, if I am not prepared to fight in the spiritual realm with the weapon of prayer. 

#12.  I cannot say YOURS IS THE KINGDOM, if I do not give the King the disciplined obedience of a royal subject. 

#13. I cannot say YOURS IS THE POWER, if I fear what my friends and neighbors might say, think, or do. 

#14.  I cannot say FOREVER, if I am too anxious about each day's affairs. 

#15.  I cannot say AMEN, unless I honestly say "Cost what it may, this is my prayer!" 

(Adapted from the OUR FATHER from Father Paul, OFM.) 


O God, from whom all good things come, grant that we, who call on you in our need,

may at your prompting discern what is right, and by your guidance do it.

Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.


A letter to Proba by St Augustine: On the Lord's Prayer 

We need to use words so that we may remind ourselves to consider carefully what we are asking, not so that we may think we can instruct the Lord or prevail on him.

    Thus, when we say: Hallowed be your name, we are reminding ourselves to desire that his name, which in fact is always holy, should also be considered holy among men. I mean that it should not be held in contempt. But this is a help for men, not for God.

    And as for our saying: Your kingdom come, it will surely come whether we will it or not. But we are stirring up our desires for the kingdom so that it can come to us and we can deserve to reign there.

    When we say: Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven, we are asking him to make us obedient so that his will may be done in us as it is done in heaven by his angels.

    When we say: Give us this day our daily bread, in saying this day we mean “in this world.” Here we ask for a sufficiency by specifying the most important part of it; that is, we use the word “bread” to stand for everything. Or else we are asking for the sacrament of the faithful, which is necessary in this world, not to gain temporal happiness but to gain the happiness that is everlasting.

    When we say: Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us, we are reminding ourselves of what we must ask and what we must do in order to be worthy in turn to receive.

    When we say: Lead us not into temptation, we are reminding ourselves to ask that his help may not depart from us; otherwise we could be seduced and consent to some temptation, or despair and yield to it.

    When we say: Deliver us from evil, we are reminding ourselves to reflect on the fact that we do not yet enjoy the state of blessedness in which we shall suffer no evil. This is the final petition contained in the Lord’s Prayer, and it has a wide application. In this petition the Christian can utter his cries of sorrow, in it he can shed his tears, and through it he can begin, continue and conclude his prayer, whatever the distress in which he finds himself. Yes, it was very appropriate that all these truths should be entrusted to us to remember in these very words.

    Whatever be the other words we may prefer to say (words which the one praying chooses so that his disposition may become clearer to himself or which he simply adopts so that his disposition may be intensified), we say nothing that is not contained in the Lord’s Prayer, provided of course we are praying in a correct and proper way. But if anyone says something which is incompatible with this prayer of the Gospel, he is praying in the flesh, even if he is not praying sinfully. And yet I do not know how this could be termed anything but sinful, since those who are born again through the Spirit ought to pray only in the Spirit.


A letter to Proba by St Augustine 2

Let us exercise our desire in prayer:

Why in our fear of not praying as we should, do we turn to so many things, to find what we should pray for? Why do we not say instead, in the words of the psalm: I have asked one thing from the Lord, this is what I will seek: to dwell in the Lord’s house all the days of my life, to see the graciousness of the Lord, and to visit his temple? There, the days do not come and go in succession, and the beginning of one day does not mean the end of another; all days are one, simultaneously and without end, and the life lived out in these days has itself no end.

    So that we might obtain this life of happiness, he who is true life itself taught us to pray, not in many words as though speaking longer could gain us a hearing. After all, we pray to one who, as the Lord himself tells us, knows what we need before we ask for it.

    Why he should ask us to pray, when he knows what we need before we ask him, may perplex us if we do not realise that our Lord and God does not want to know what we want (for he cannot fail to know it), but wants us rather to exercise our desire through our prayers, so that we may be able to receive what he is preparing to give us. His gift is very great indeed, but our capacity is too small and limited to receive it. That is why we are told: Enlarge your desires, do not bear the yoke with unbelievers.

    The deeper our faith, the stronger our hope, the greater our desire, the larger will be our capacity to receive that gift, which is very great indeed. No eye has seen it; it has no colour. No ear has heard it; it has no sound. It has not entered man’s heart; man’s heart must enter into it.

    In this faith, hope and love we pray always with unwearied desire. However, at set times and seasons we also pray to God in words, so that by these signs we may instruct ourselves and mark the progress we have made in our desire, and spur ourselves on to deepen it. The more fervent the desire, the more worthy will be its fruit. When the Apostle tells us: Pray without ceasing, he means this: Desire unceasingly that life of happiness which is nothing if not eternal, and ask it of him who alone is able to give it.


Responsory 1

℟. When you seek me, you shall find me – if you search with all your heart.* If you pray to me, I will listen to you.

℣. I know the plans I have in mind for you – plans for peace, not disaster, reserving a future full of hope for you.* If you pray to me, I will listen to you.


Responsory 2

℟. Ask and you will receive;* for everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.

℣. The Lord is near to all who call upon him, who call upon him from their hearts;* for everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

The Feast of St John Paul II.

“I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing!" (Luke 12: 49).

Thursday 22nd October 2020, 29th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of Pope St John Paul II (1920 - 2005). Polish. First non-Italian Pope in 455 years. Accomplished writer. Traveled all over the world to promote human brotherhood. His enduring legacy is the Catechism of the Catholic Church which he promulgated in 1992.

Some people think that the Gospel of today from Luke 12: 49 - 53 is a hyperbole, that is, great exaggeration. Do you think so? Then look at a Crucifix. Is Jesus nailed to the Cross wearing a crown of thorns a hyperbole?

Jesus proclaimed: "I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing!" Jesus said in another passage that the purpose of His life is to proclaim the truth. If you belong to the truth, you will listen to His voice, He further said. If you do not belong to the truth, you will oppose Him.

Falsehood always opposes the truth. Cain murdered Abel. Esau hated his brother Jacob and would have killed him if he had the opportunity. The brothers of Joseph sold him into slavery. Judas, intimate companion of Jesus betrayed Him for 30 pieces of silver. This tug of War still plays out relentlessly in families everywhere. Do not be afraid of those who oppose you because you have responded to the call of Jesus. Be rather afraid of failing to acknowledge Jesus before men. Jesus wants us to love our families and friends but never make idols of them.

Do you remember how David slew Goliath? Now see what weapons God has given us for the inevitable struggle of the present time:
"The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ." (2 Corinthians 10: 4 - 5).

Our God is a consuming fire!

Daily Bible Verse @

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Much will be required of the person entrusted with much.

"Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more." (Luke 12: 48).

Wednesday 21st October 2020, 29th Week in Ordinary Time.

In today's Gospel Reading, Jesus ended His teaching on the need to be prepared at all times for His sudden and unannounced coming with a curious ending:
"Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more."

Why did Jesus end His teaching thus? Perhaps because the irresponsible servants in the story may not even be aware of their gifts  and responsibilities. Are you aware of your gifts as a Christian? As a Catholic Christian with the fullness of faith? As Catholic Christians, we enjoy the fullness of the content of Revelation or the fullness of truth that God offers the world for the sake of our salvation. No other church or ecclesiastical community enjoy 100 % of the fullness of faith. Only the Catholic Church claims this from the beginning of her life.

If you do not know your gifts, tools and responsibilities, how can you be expected to be faithful to your assignment? Jesus will not accept ignorance as an excuse. If you do not know your master's will, you will still be "beaten lightly."

We have been given a lot. We have been given the Seven Sacraments, and the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit. If you want to learn more about these topics, click the link below:

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Gifts, Fruits of The Holy Spirit and Sacraments

There are seven sacraments in the Church: Baptism, Confirmation or Chrismation, Eucharist, Penance, Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders, and Matrimony."

Sacraments of Christian Initiation:


Sacraments of Healing:


Sacraments of Service:



What are the 7 gifts of the Holy Spirit? (CCC #1831)

The 7 gifts of the Holy Spirit are: (CCC #1831)

1. Wisdom

2. Understanding

3. Counsel

4. Fortitude

5. Knowledge

6. Piety

7. Fear of the Lord

What are the 12 fruits of the Holy Spirit? (CCC #1832)

The 12 fruits of the Holy Spirit are:

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 

Monday, October 19, 2020

Feast of St Paul of the Cross.

“Gird your loins and light your lamps and be like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding, ready to open immediately when he comes and knocks." (Luke 12: 35 - 36).

Tuesday 20th October 2020, 29th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Paul of the Cross. (1694 - 1775). Italian. Priest, mystic, Founder of the Passionists. The charism of St Paul of the Cross is a profound understanding of the mystery of the Cross and translating this understanding into a plan of life.

In our key Scripture for today, Jesus urges His followers to be ready and prepared for His Second and sudden Coming. That Coming will most likely be delayed. The hint to this is many in the Gospels. The warning is clear. Do not be asleep and foolish. Do not think: The Lord has not returned for 2000 years. We have more than sufficient time to put our houses in order before Jesus returns.

How do we gird our loins and light our lamps to await our master’s return? The answer is Prayer. Prayer is the means of vigilance. Prayer is a vital necessity for this reason and others. In His Agony in the Garden, Jesus told His disciples "Watch and pray that you do not enter into temptation." Why? Because while their spirit is willing, experience shows that their flesh will succeed in dragging down their spirit. The remedy is: Prayer. Prayer. Prayer.

St Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop, Founder of the Redemptorists and Doctor of the Church has this to say on Prayer:
"Were you to ask what are the means of overcoming temptations, I would answer: The first means is prayer; the second is prayer; the third is prayer; and should you ask me a thousand times, I would repeat the same." (St Alphonsus Liguori).

Jesus declared blessed all those who are vigilant and wait for Him. Their reward will be huge and unbelievable.

"Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival. Amen, I say to you, he will gird himself, have them recline at table, and proceed to wait on them." (Luke 12: 37).

Daily Bible Verse @

Sunday, October 18, 2020

The Feast of St John de Brebeuf, Isaac Jogues and companions.

"Now as for you, you have so many good things stored up for many years, rest, eat, drink, be merry!”  (Luke 12: 19).

Monday 19th October 2020, 29th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of the North American Martyrs: John de Brebeuf, Isaac Jogues and companions. All French and all of the Society of Jesus. 8 in all, 6 priests and 2 brothers. They labored day and night under harsh conditions with almost the certainty of martyrdom to bring Jesus Christ to the Native Americans.

Our key Scripture for today is the self congratulatory words of the foolish rich man whose land produced abundant harvest. He did not give thanks to God. He did not share his bounty with the poor.  He received a jolting message from God who is our Divine Providence:

"You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you; and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?" (Luke 12: 20).

From the beginning of salvation history, God has taught man to trust in Him for all his needs. Below are a few relevant Scriptures:

#1. Gather the manna you need for one day.  The next day, "I the Lord Your God will supply fresh manna for the new day." (Cf Exodus 16: 21 - 35).
Hoarding is idolatry. Deal with your insecurity with prayer.

#2. "Give us today the food we need."  (Matthew 6: 11).
God who is our Providence knows exactly what we need and when we need it.

#3.  "Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself. Sufficient for a day is its own evil."  (Matthew 6 : 34).
God says: My Name is: I AM. My Name is not I WAS. My Name is not I WILL BE.
Learn from God's Name that He is always Emmanuel, God with you always. He is in control everywhere, in everything and always. Do not be fooled by what you consider accidents or coincidences.

Jesus promises that if we seek first the kingdom of God and His holiness, God who knows what we need and when we need it will never fail to provide adequately for us.

Do not allow wealth to be a snare for you.  Rather make your wealth the trusting of God's promises. God wants His faithful promises to be our protection and armor in every situation. (Cf Psalm 94: 4). Not even a single one of them has failed.

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