Sunday, March 29, 2015

 

MONDAY OF HOLY WEEK

March 30, 2015 - MONDAY OF HOLY WEEK

Violet   

          

Is 42:1 – 7 / Jn 12:1 – 11

 

Reading: Is 42:1 – 7

     Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one in whom I delight. I have put my spirit upon him, and he will bring justice to the nations.

     He does not shout or raise his voice proclamations are not heard in the streets. A broken reed he will not crush, nor will he snuff out the light of the wavering wick. He will make justice appear in truth.

     He will not waver or be broken until he has established justice on earth; the islands are waiting for his law.

     Thus says God, Yahweh, who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread the earth and all that comes from it, who gives life and breath to those who walk on it:

     I, Yahweh, have called you for the sake of justice; I will hold your hand to make you firm; I will make you as a covenant to the people, and as a light to the nations,

to open eyes that do not see, to free captives from prison, to bring out to light those who sit in darkness.

 

Gospel: Jn 12:1 – 11

     Six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where he had raised Lazarus, the dead man, to life.  Now they gave a dinner for him, and while Martha waited on them, Lazarus sat at table with Jesus.

     Then Mary took a pound of costly perfume made from genuine nard and anointed the feet of Jesus, wiping them with her hair. And the whole house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. 

     Judas, son of Simon Iscariot – the disciple who was to betray Jesus – remarked, "This perfume could have been sold for three hundred silver coins and turned over to the poor."  Judas, indeed, had no concern for the poor; he was a thief and as he held the common purse, he tried to help himself to the funds.

     But Jesus spoke up,  "Leave her alone. Was she not keeping it for the day of my burial?" (The poor you always have with you, but you will not always have me.)

     Many Jews heard that Jesus was there and came, not only because of Jesus, but also to see Lazarus whom he had raised from the dead.  So the chief priests thought about killinh Lazarus as well for many of the Jews were drifting away because of him and believing in Jesus. 

 

Reflection:

     When we love someone, we give our time and attention, and share the best things that we have with the person we love.  Some may even question the extravagance, time and effort that we accord our loved one.  

     The Gospel reading speaks of love, a love that knows no limit. Mary showed her love and gratitude to Jesus by using costly ointment to wipe Jesus' feet. Even if it seemed "wasteful," she gave the best that she had out of love and gratitude for God's mercy. Her utmost concern was to please the Lord.  On the other hand, Judas was counting the cost and thought of it as wasteful.  He also loved Jesus, but he was thinking more of his own benefit instead of giving more to God.  It is so easy to "hold back" when we are beset with so many worldly things and concerns. 

     Jesus showed the greatest love by sacrificing his own life for us to save us from our sins. How do we show our love in return? Have we done something extravagant for him?  Let us pray for the grace to love Jesus with all that we have, with our very selves: he gave everything for us until the very last drop of His blood.  

 

 

WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

 

BIRTHDAY

     FREDERICK GO

     QIT ABOLA

     SHIELA MAY A. DIESTRO

     VICTORIA FAICOL

 

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most. 

 

Have a good day!

 

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Saturday, March 28, 2015

 

PALM SUNDAY OF THE LORD’S PASSION

March 29, 2015 - PALM SUNDAY OF THE LORD'S PASSION

Blessing of Palms

Cycle B

Red  

    

Is 50: 4 – 7 / Phil 2: 6- 11 / Mk 14:1 - 15: 47  

 

First Reading: Is 50: 4 - 7

     The Lord Yahweh has taught me so I speak as his disciple and I know how to sustain the weary. Morning after morning he wakes me up to hear, to listen like a disciple. The Lord Yahweh has opened my ear. I have not rebelled, nor have I withdrawn. I offered my back to those who strike me, my cheeks to those who pulled my beard; neither did I shield my face from blows, spittle and disgrace. I have not despaired, for the Lord Yahweh comes to my help. So, like a flint I set my face, knowing that I will not be disgraced.

 

Second Reading: Phil 2: 6 - 11 

     Though being divine in nature, he did not claim in fact equality with God, but emptied himself, taking on the nature of a servant, made in human likeness, and in his appearance found as a man. He humbled himself by being obedient to death, death on the cross. That is why God exalted him and gave him the Name which outshines all names, so that at the Name of Jesus all knees should bend in heaven, on earth and among the dead, and all tongues proclaim that Christ Jesus is the Lord to the glory of God the Father, 

 

Gospel: Mk 14: 1 - 15: 47 

     The Passion of Our Lord according to Mark.

 

      It was now two days before the feast of the Passover and Unleavened Bread. The chief priests and the teachers of the Law were looking craftily for a way to arrest Jesus and put him to death; for they said, "Not during the Festival, or there might be trouble among the people."

     Jesus was in Bethany in the house of Simon the leper. As he was reclining at dinner, a woman entered carrying a precious jar of expensive perfume made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfumed oil on Jesus' head. Then some of them became angry and said, "What a useless waste of perfume. It could have been sold for more than three hundred silver coins and the money given to the poor." And they criticized her.

     But Jesus said, "Let her alone; why are you troubling her? What she has just done for me is a very charitable work. At any time you can help the poor, for you always have them with you, but you will not have me forever. This woman has done what was hers to do, she has anointed my body beforehand for my burial. Truly, I say to you, wherever the Good News is proclaimed, and this will be throughout the world, what she has done will be told in praise of her."

     Then Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, went off to the chief priests in order to betray Jesus to them. On hearing him they were excited and promised to give him money. So Judas started planning the best way to hand him over to them.

     On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the day when the Passover Lamb was killed, the disciples asked him, "Where would you have us go to prepare the Passover meal for you?"

     So Jesus sent two of his disciples with these instructions, "Go into the city and there a man will come to you carrying a jar of water. Follow him to the house he enters and say to the owner, 'The Master says: Where is the room where I may eat the Passover meal with my disciples?' Then he will show you a large room upstairs, already arranged and furnished. There you will prepare for us." The disciples went off. When they reached the city, they found everything just as Jesus had told them; and they prepared the Passover meal.

     When it was evening, Jesus arrived with the Twelve. While they were at table eating, Jesus said, "Truly, I tell you, one of you will betray me, one who shares my meal." They were deeply distressed at hearing this and asked him, one after the other, "You don't mean me, do you?" And Jesus answered, "It is one of you Twelve, one who dips his bread in the dish with me. The Son of Man is going as the Scriptures say he will. But alas for that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed; better for him if he had never been born."

     While they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. And he said, "Take this, it is my body." Then he took a cup and after he had given thanks, passed it to them and they all drank from it. And he said, "This is my blood, the blood of the Covenant, which is to be poured out for many. Truly, I say to you, I will not taste the fruit of the vine again until the day I drink the new wine in the kingdom of God."

     After singing psalms of praise, they went out to the Hill of Olives. And Jesus said to them, "All of you will be confused and fall away; for the Scripture says: I will strike the shepherd and the sheep will be scattered. But after I am raised up, I will go to Galilee ahead of you."

     Then Peter said to him, "Even though all the others fall away, I will not." And Jesus replied, "Truly, I say to you, today, this very night before the cock crows twice, you will deny me three times." But Peter insisted, "Though I have to die with you, I will never deny you." And all of them said the same.

     They came to a place which was called Gethsemane and Jesus said to his disciples, "Sit here while I pray."

     But he took Peter, James and John along with him, and becoming filled with fear and distress, he said to them, "My soul is full of sorrow, even to death. Remain here and stay awake."

     Then he went a little further on and fell to the ground, praying that if possible this hour might pass him by. Jesus said, "Abba (Daddy), all things are possible for you; take this cup away from me. Yet not what I want, but what you want."

     Then he came and found them asleep and said to Peter, "Simon, are you sleeping? Couldn't you stay awake for one hour? Keep watch and pray, all of you, so that you may not slip into temptation. The spirit indeed is eager but human nature is weak. And going away he prayed saying the same words. When he came back to the disciples, he found them asleep again; they could not keep their eyes open, and they did not know what to say to him.

     When he came back the third time, he said, "You can sleep on now and take your rest! It is all over, the time has come; the Son of Man is now given into the hands of sinners. Get up, let us go. Look: the one betraying me is right here."

     While Jesus was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve, came up. With him was a crowd armed with swords and clubs, who had been sent by the chief priests, the teachers of the Law and the elders. The traitor had arranged a signal for them, "The one I kiss, he is the man. Arrest him and take him away under guard."

     So, when he came, he went directly to Jesus calling, "Master! Master!" and kissed him. Then they seized Jesus and arrested him. One of the bystanders drew his sword and struck out at the High Priest's servant, cutting off his ear.

     Jesus turned to them saying, "So you have set out against a robber! Did you need swords and clubs to arrest me? Day after day I was among you teaching in the Temple and you did not arrest me. But let the Scriptures be fulfilled." Then they all deserted him and fled.

     A young man covered by nothing but a linen cloth followed Jesus. As they took hold of him, he left the cloth in their hands and fled away naked.

     They led Jesus to the High Priest and all the chief priests assembled with the elders and the teachers of the Law. Peter had followed him at a distance and went right into the courtyard of the High Priest, where he sat with the guards, warming himself at the fire.

     Now the chief priests and the whole Council tried to find some evidence against Jesus so that they might put him to death, but they were unable to find any. Even though many came up to speak falsely against him, their evidence did not agree. At last some stood up and gave this false witness: "We heard him say: 'I will destroy this Temple made by hands and in three days I will build another not made by human hands." But even so their evidence did not agree.

     The High Priest then stood up in the midst of them and asked Jesus, "Have you no answer at all? What of this evidence against you?" But Jesus was silent and made no reply.

  The High Priest put a second question to him, "Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed One?" Then Jesus answered, "I am, and you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Most Powerful and coming with the clouds of heaven around him." The High Priest tore his clothes to show his horror and said, "What more evidence do we need? You have just heard his blasphemous words. What is your decision?" And they all condemned Jesus saying, "He must die."

     Some of them began to spit on Jesus and, blindfolding him, they struck him saying, "Play the prophet!" And the guards set upon him with blows.

     While Peter was below in the courtyard, one of the High Priest's servant-girls came by. Noticing Peter beside the fire, she looked straight at him and said, "You also were with Jesus, the Nazarene." But he denied it, "I don't know or understand what you are talking about." And he went out through the gateway.

     The servant-girl saw him there and told the bystanders, "This man is one of them." But Peter denied it again. After a little while those standing by said to Peter, "Of course you are one of them; you are a Galilean, aren't you?" And Peter began to justify himself with curses and oaths, "I don't know the man you are talking about."

  Just then a cock crowed a second time and Peter remembered what Jesus had said to him, "Before the cock crows twice you will deny me three times." And he broke down and wept.

     Early in the morning, the chief priests, the elders and the teachers of the Law (that is, the whole Council or Sanhedrin) had their plan ready. They put Jesus in chains, led him away and handed him over to Pilate.

     Pilate asked him, "Are you the King of the Jews?" Jesus answered, "You say so."  As the chief priests accused Jesus of many things, Pilate asked him again, "Have you no answer at all? See how many charges they bring against you." But Jesus gave no further answers, so that Pilate wondered.

     At every Passover festival, Pilate used to free any prisoner the people asked for. Now there was a man called Barabbas, jailed with the rioters who had committed murder in the uprising. When the crowd went up to ask Pilate the usual favor, he said to them, "Do you want me to set free the King of the Jews?" For he realized that the chief priests had handed Jesus over to him out of envy. But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to ask instead for the release of Barabbas. Pilate replied, "And what shall I do with the man you call King of the Jews?" The crowd shouted back, "Crucify him!" Pilate asked, "What evil has he done?" But they shouted the louder, "Crucify him!"

     As Pilate wanted to please the people, he freed Barabbas and after the flogging of Jesus had him handed over to be crucified.

     The soldiers took him inside the courtyard known as the praetorium and called the rest of their companions. They clothed him in a purple cloak and twisting a crown of thorns, they forced it onto his head. Then they began saluting him, "Long life to the King of the Jews!" With a stick they gave him blows on the head and spat on him; then they knelt down pretending to worship him.

     When they had finished mocking him, they pulled off the purple cloak and put his own clothes on him.

  The soldiers led him out of the city to crucify him. On the way they met Simon of Cyrene, father of Alexander and Rufus, who was coming in from the country, and forced him to carry the cross of Jesus. 

     When they had led him to the place called Golgotha, which means the Skull, they offered him wine mixed with myrrh, but he would not take it. Then they nailed him to the cross and divided his clothes among themselves, casting lots to decide what each should take. It was about nine o'clock in the morning when they crucified him. The statement of his offense was displayed above his head and it read, "The King of the Jews." They also crucified two robbers with him, one on his right and one on his left.

     People passing by laughed at him, shook their head and jeered, "Aha! So you are able to tear down the Temple and build it up again in three days. Now save yourself and come down from the cross!" 

     In the same way the chief priests and the teachers of the Law mocked him saying to one another, "The man who saved others cannot save himself. Let's see the Messiah, the king of Israel, come down from his cross and then we will believe in him." Even the men who were crucified with Jesus insulted him.

     When noon came, darkness fell over the whole land and lasted until three o'clock; and at three o'clock Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Eloi, Eloi, lamma sabachthani?" which means "My God, my God, why have you deserted me?" As soon as they heard these words, some of the bystanders said, "Listen! He is calling for Elijah." And one of them went quickly to fill a sponge with bitter wine and, putting it on a reed, gave him to drink saying, "Now let's see whether Elijah comes to take him down." 

     But Jesus uttered a loud cry and gave up his spirit. And immediately the curtain that enclosed the Temple sanctuary was torn in two from top to bottom.

     The captain who was standing in front of him saw how Jesus died and heard the cry he gave; and he said, "Truly, this man was the Son of God."

     There were also some women watching from a distance; among them were Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James the younger and Joset and Salome, who had followed Jesus when he was in Galilee and saw to his needs. There were also others who had come up with him to Jerusalem.

     It was now evening and as it was Preparation Day, that is the day before the Sabbath, Joseph of Arimathea boldly went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Joseph was a respected member of the Council who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God.

     Pilate was surprised that Jesus should have died so soon; so he summoned the captain and inquired if Jesus was already dead. After hearing the captain, he let Joseph have the body.

     Joseph took it down and wrapped it in the linen sheet he had bought. He laid the body in a tomb that had been cut out of the rock and rolled a stone across the entrance to the tomb. Now Mary of Magdala and Mary the mother of Joset took note of where the body had been laid.

 

Reflection:

     Today, Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion, we begin Holy Week. During Holy Week the Church presents to us key liturgical celebrations of the Lord's Passion and Death on Palm Sunday, the Last Supper on Holy Thursday, the Lord's Passion and Death on Good Friday and the Lord's Resurrection at Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday. It is also during Holy Week that the Church celebrates the Mass of the Chrism. The Gospel accounts of the Lord's passion and death are read twice each year: an account by one of the Synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark or Luke) is read during Palm Sunday following a three-year cycle and each year John's account is read at the Good Friday liturgy. 

     There is brisk business on Palm Sunday selling palms of various kinds and arrangements: blessed palms are brought home to be placed at windows and doors to protect homes from evil. 

     Parallel popular religious celebrations during Holy Week are the public and communal Pasyon (reading or chanting of the Gospel readings, especially during Holy Week), the Visita Iglesia of the Altar of Repose seven churches or chapels after the Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord's Supper, the Seven Last Words on Good Friday before the Good Friday afternoon liturgy of the Lord's Passion and the encuentro or salubong very early before dawn on Easter Sunday morning to celebrate Christ's appearance and visit to his Virgin Mother. 

     In some parts of the country, there is also the Penitencia or public scourging and even "crucifixion" of devotees. There have been long traditions of Sinakulo, Passion plays and dramatic presentations of the Lord's Passion and Death: Oberammergau in Germany has had its world famous decennial presentation for many generations.

     Beginning with the liturgical re-enactment of Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem with palms and hosannahs, the Church invites the faithful to contemplate and pray over the Father's love for us and Christ's love, obedience and generosity even unto death on the cross. Let us quietly pray over the Passion narratives and experience the love of the Lord for each one of us. Jesus tells us not to be afraid because he is with us in our own crosses and pains. 

     We pray as we do on Good Friday at the Adoration of the Holy Cross: "We adore your Cross, O Lord, we praise and glorify your holy Resurrection, for behold, because of the wood of a tree, joy has come to the whole world. May God have mercy on us and bless us; may He let his face shed its light upon us and have mercy on us."

 

 

WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

 

BIRTHDAY

     MARICRIS B. ARROGANCIA

 

IN MEMORIAM (+)

     ASELA SO SY (DEC 7, 1920 – MAR 29, 2005)

     AGUSTO D. LAO

 

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most. 

 

Have a good day!

 

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These reflections are distributed free and are for personal use only. Feel free to send the Daily Prayer reflections to your friends, colleagues and relatives; however, if you do, please include the following: 

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   |  distributed free and for personal use only.  

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Friday, March 27, 2015

 

SATURDAY, 5th Week of Lent

March 28, 2015 SATURDAY, 5th Week of Lent
Violet             

Ez 37:21 – 28  / Jn 11:45 - 56

Reading: Ez 37:21 – 28  
     You will then say to them: Thus says Yahweh: I am about to withdraw the Israelites from where they were among the nations. I shall gather them from all around and bring them back to their land. I shall make them into one people on the mountains of Israel and one king is to be king of them all. They will no longer form two nations or be two separate kingdoms, nor will they defile themselves again with their idols, their detestable practices and their sins. I shall free them from the guilt of their treachery; I shall cleanse them and they will be for me a people and I shall be God for them. My servant David will reign over them, one shepherd for all. They will live according to my laws and follow and practice my decrees. They will settle in the land I gave to my servant Jacob where their ancestors lived. There they will live forever, their children and their children's children. David my servant will be their prince forever.
     I shall establish a covenant of peace with them, an everlasting covenant. I shall settle them and they will increase and I shall put my sanctuary in their midst forever. I shall make my home at their side; I shall be their God and they will be my people. Then the nations will know that I am Yahweh who makes Israel holy, having my sanctuary among them forever."

Gospel: John 11:45 - 56
     Many of the Jews who had come with Mary believed in Jesus when they saw what he did; but some went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done. So the chief priests and the Pharisees called the Sanhedrin Council. 
     They said, "What are we to do? For this man keeps on giving miraculous signs. If we let him go on like this, all the people will believe in him and, as a result of this, the Romans will come and sweep away our Holy Place and our nation."
     Then one of them, Caiaphas, who was High Priest that year, spoke up, "You know nothing at all nor do you see clearly what you need. It is better to have one man die for the people than to let the whole nation be destroyed." 
     In saying this Caiaphas did not speak for himself, but being High Priest that year, he foretold as a prophet that Jesus would die for the nation,  and not for the nation only, but also to gather into one the scattered children of God. So, from that day on, they were determined to kill him. 
     Because of this, Jesus no longer moved about freely among the Jews. He withdrew instead to the country near the wilderness and stayed with his disciples in a town called Ephraim. 
     The Passover of the Jews was at hand and people from everywhere were coming to Jerusalem to purify themselves before the Passover. They looked for Jesus and as they stood in the Temple, they talked with one another, "What do you think? Will he come to the festival?" 

Reflection:
     The message of Yahweh to the Israelites is the same as what he is saying to us now. The Father gathers not only the Israelites but the whole of mankind. During this Lenten season, the Lord reminds us again of his great love for us. He speaks of his desire to do everything to unify us to him in Christ Jesus.
     It is written in John 3:17- "God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world; instead, through him the world is to be saved." After reading the Lord's declaration, what are we to say to him?  We are indeed his people and he, our God.
     As his people, how do we respond to this? Are we ready to go through 'metanoia' (complete change of mind and heart) directed to be the true children of God?
     Lent is the time to reflect on this - to cleanse ourselves of whatever is not of the Lord.  It is not only to repent of our sins now but to resolve to love God more by avoiding sin and praying for the grace we need in order to live as true followers and children of God.


WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

BIRTHDAY
     AIDEN THOMAS YU AMPIL

WEDDING ANNIVERSARY
     DANIEL & JACKELYE ONGCHOCO

IN MEMORIAM (+)
     TRINIDAD L. SUN

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most. 

Have a good day!

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These reflections are distributed free and are for personal use only. Feel free to send the Daily Prayer reflections to your friends, colleagues and relatives; however, if you do, please include the following: 
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Thursday, March 26, 2015

 

FRIDAY, 5th Week of Lent

March 27, 2015 FRIDAY, 5th Week of Lent
Violet           
  
Jer 20:10 – 13 / Jn 10:31 - 42

Reading: Jer 20:10 – 13  
     I hear many people whispering, "Terror is all around! Denounce him! Yes, denounce him!" All my friends watch me to see if I will slip: "Perhaps he can be deceived," they say; "then we can get the better of him and have our revenge."
     But Yahweh, a mighty warrior, is with me. My persecutors will stumble and not prevail; that failure will be their shame and their disgrace will never be forgotten. 
     Yahweh, God of hosts, you test the just and probe the heart and mind. Let me see your revenge on them, for to you I have entrusted my cause. 
     Sing to Yahweh! Praise Yahweh and say: he has rescued the poor from the clutches of the wicked!

Gospel:  Jn 10:31 - 42 
     The Jews then picked up stones to throw at him;  so Jesus said, "I have openly done many good works among you which the Father gave me to do. For which of these do you stone me?"  
     The Jews answered, "We are not stoning you for doing a good work but for insulting God; you are only a man and you make yourself God."
     Then Jesus replied, "Is this not written in your Law: I said: you are gods? So those who received this word of God were called gods and the Scripture is always true. Then what should be said of the one anointed and sent into the world by the Father? Am I insulting God when I say: 'I am the Son of God'? 
     "If I am not doing the works of my Father, do not believe me. But if I do them, even if you have no faith in me, believe because of the works I do, and know that the Father is in me and I in the Father."  
     Again they tried to arrest him, but Jesus escaped from their hands. He went away again to the other side of the Jordan, to the place where John had baptized, and there he stayed.  
     Many people came to him and said, "John showed no miraculous signs, but he spoke of this man and everything he said was true."  And many became believers in that place.

Reflection:
     We will know a tree by the fruit it produces. A mango tree will produce mangoes.  A melon plant will produce melons. In a similar way, we know the parents through the children. The children copy and mimic what the parents are. Our works will also determine who is our Father. When we perform works of God, people will know that we have God in us, and that we are children of God. So that when people see the good works in us, they give glory to God. We are baptized Christians and we have received this permanent seal to be living witnesses with our faith. So that when people see how we act, how we behave, how we love, they will know that God exists, that we are children of God. 
     The world may hate us, ridicule us and persecute us for not conforming with the world and all its allurements, but the Holy Spirit will help us endure and remain steadfast in our faith. That is why only faith can produce these good works that Christ is referring to in the Gospel.  By these works of faith, people will know if God is present or not. 


WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

BIRTHDAY
     ALFREDO D. MASIGAN

IN MEMORIAM (+)
     ENCARNACION LIM

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most. 

Have a good day!

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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

 

March 26, 2015 THURSDAY, 5th Week of Lent

March 26, 2015 THURSDAY, 5th Week of Lent
Violet
Gn 17: 3 – 9 / Jn 8: 51 - 59

Reading: Gn 17: 3 – 9
Abram fell face down and God said to him, "This is my covenant with you: you will be the father of a multitude of nations. No longer will you be called Abram, but Abraham, because I will make you the father of a multitude of nations. I will make you more and more famous; I will multiply your descendants; nations shall spring from you, kings shall be among your descendants. And I will establish a covenant, an everlasting covenant between myself and you and your descendants after you; from now on I will be your God and the God of your descendants after you, for generations to come.

Gospel: Jn 8: 51 - 59
Jesus said, "Truly, I say to you, if anyone keeps my word, he will never experience death." The Jews replied, "Now we know that you have a demon. Abraham died and the prophets as well, but you say: 'Whoever keeps my word will never experience death.' Who do you claim to be? Do you claim to be greater than our father Abraham, who died? And the prophets also died."
Then Jesus said, "If I were to praise myself, it would count for nothing. But he who gives glory to me is the Father, the very one you claim as your God, although you don't know him. I know him and if I were to say that I don't know him, I would be a liar like you. But I know him and I keep his word.
"As for Abraham, your ancestor, he looked forward to the day when I would come; and he rejoiced when he saw it."
The Jews then said to him, "You are not yet fifty years old and you have seen Abraham?" And Jesus said "Truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am." They then picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and left the Temple.
Reflection
In the Gospel reading, Jesus claims that a person will never experience death if that person keeps his word. Moreover, if Jesus could make such a claim, then he also claims he will not die.
If that were true, the Jews argue, then Jesus is greater than Abraham and all the prophets who all died. Jesus makes a rebuttal to this, "As for Abrahamn, your ancestor, he looked forward to the day when I would come, and he rejoiced when he saw it."
To which the Jews countered, "You are not yet fifty years old and you have seen Abraham?" To which Jesus replies, "Truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am." "I am" is the name given by God to Moses at the burning bush; "I am" is God's unique name. Jesus therefore formally claims that he is not only human, but also God! Scandalized at what they considered blasphemous, "they then picked up stones to throw at him" and to kill him. "But Jesus hid himself and left the Temple."
Do you believe that God incarnated himself in Jesus? That Jesus was human he was limited, finite and imperfect; he can make mistakes; he can be angry, exasperated, suffer and die.
If you do not believe that Jesus was God Incarnate, then you are like the Jews who picked up stones to reject and kill him. If you cannot believe that Jesus was God Incarnate, then you probably cannot also accept your being human yourself?


WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

BIRTHDAY
CARLO L. ESEO
LIZA ROMANA
REYNA ROSE P. MANONOG
TOMY DEO P. CABINTA

OTHER INTENTIONS:
For the special and thanksgiving intentions of Beny Chua.

For Emaline, who Is suffering from bi-polar disorder and is in deep depression.

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.

Have a good day!

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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

 

WEDNESDAY, THE ANNUNCIATION OF THE LORD

March 25, 2015 WEDNESDAY, THE ANNUNCIATION OF THE LORD
Solemnity, White

Is 7:10-14, 8: 10 / Heb 10: 4-10 / Lk 1:26-38

First Reading: Is 7:10-14, 8: 10
Once again Yahweh addressed Ahaz, "Ask for a sign from Yahweh your God, let it come either from the deepest depths or from the heights of heaven."
But Ahaz answered, "I will not ask, I will not put Yahweh to the test."
Then Isaiah said, "Now listen, descendants of David. Have you not been satisfied trying the patience of people, that you also try the patience of my God? Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The Virgin is with child and bears a son and calls his name Immanuel.

Second Reading: Heb 10: 4-10
And never will the blood of bulls and goats take away these sins.
This is why on entering the world, Christ says: You did not desire sacrifice and offering; you were not pleased with burnt offerings and sin offerings. Then I said: "Here I am. It was written of me in the scroll. I will do your will, O God."
First he says: Sacrifice, offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire nor were you pleased with them—although they were required by the Law. Then he says: Here I am to do your will.
This is enough to nullify the first will and establish the new. Now, by this will of God, we are sanctified once and for all by the sacrifice of the body of Christ Jesus.

Gospel: Lk 1:26-38
In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth. He was sent to a young virgin who was betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the family of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.
The angel came to her [Mary] and said, "Rejoice, full of grace, the Lord is with you." Mary was troubled at these words, wondering what this greeting could mean.
But the angel said, "Do not fear, Mary, for God has looked kindly on you. You shall conceive and bear a son and you shall name him Jesus. He will be great and shall rightly be called Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the kingdom of David, his ancestor; he will rule over the people of Jacob forever and his reign shall have no end."
Then Mary said to the angel, "How can this be if I am a virgin?" And the angel said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore, the holy child to be born shall be called Son of God. Even your relative Elizabeth is expecting a son in her old age, although she was unable to have a child, and she is now in her sixth month. With God nothing is impossible."
Then Mary said, "I am the handmaid of the Lord, let it be done to me as you have said." And the angel left her.

Reflection:
Isaiah had prophesied, "Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The Virgin is with child and bears a son and calls his name Emmanuel. He will live on curds and honey by the time he learns to refuse evil and choose good."
Mary was a young Jewish maiden engaged to be married to the carpenter Joseph when the angel Gabriel came to her: "Rejoice, full of grace, the Lord is with you. . . You shall conceive and bear a son and you shall call him Jesus. He will be great and shall rightly be called Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the kingdom of David, his ancestor; he will rule over the people of Jacob forever and his reign shall have no end. . . . The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore, the holy child to be born shall be called Son of God."
Mary generously and courageously accepted God's invitation, "I am the handmaid of the Lord, let it be done to me as you have said." Mary's acceptance reflects her holy life unsullied by sin and her fidelity to God. She is the perfect example of how we should live our lives, in the service of God and of others. By living out love which affirms our faith, the hand of God can work in our lives for change and the happiness of people and the world.
We lead our lives in the context of our relationship with God: we fulfill our religious obligations such as Sunday Mass and family prayers; we work for the food and sustenance of our families; we take care of our families and the education of our children. Have we been good to our subordinates and our neighbors? Have we been fair to those who work for us? Have we cared for the needy and the homeless?
With Mary our Mother as our model we pray that our hearts and minds may be open to God's urgings and inspirations. May we be filled with the Spirit and be desirous of being more faithful to our Church and be more helpful to those in need. Like Mary at the Annunciation by the angel, may we generously respond to God's will for us.


WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

BIRTHDAY
MARIO P. ESCALANTE
MS. SHIRLEY TAN
SHARLYN ROSE GO KAW

IN MEMORIAM (+)
STEWART (1960-1993) & FRANCES VALERIE LIAO (1963-1993)

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.

Have a good day!

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Monday, March 23, 2015

 

TUESDAY, 5th Week of Lent

March 24, 2015 TUESDAY, 5th Week of Lent

Violet 

 

Nm 21:4- 9 / Jn 8: 21-30

 

Reading: Nm 21: 4-9

     From Mount Hor they set out by the Red Sea road to go around the land of Edom. The people were discouraged by the journey and began to complain against God and Moses, "Why have you brought us out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? There is neither bread nor water here and we are disgusted with this tasteless manna."

     Yahweh then sent fiery serpents against them. They bit the people and many of the Israelites died. Then the people came to Moses and said, "We have sinned, speaking against Yahweh and against you. Plead with Yahweh to take the serpents away."

     Moses pleaded for the people and Yahweh said to him, "Make a fiery serpent and set it on a standard; whoever has been bitten and then looks at it shall live."

     So Moses made a bronze serpent and set it on a standard. Whenever a man was bitten, he looked towards the bronze serpent and he lived.

 

Gospel: Jn 8: 21-30

     Again Jesus said to them, "I am going away, and though you look for me, you will die in your sin. Where I am going you cannot come." The Jews wondered, "Why does he say that we can't come where he is going? Will he kill himself?"

     But Jesus said, "You are from below and I am from above; you are of this world and I am not of this world. That is why I told you that you will die in your sins. And you shall die in your sins unless you believe that I am He."

     They asked him, "Who are you?"; and Jesus said, "Just what I have told you from the beginning. I have much to say about you and much to condemn; but the One who sent me is truthful and everything I learned from him, I proclaim to the world."

     They didn't understand that Jesus was speaking to them about the Father. So Jesus said, "When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He and that I do nothing of myself, but I say just what the Father taught me. He who sent me is with me and has not left me alone; because I always do what pleases him."

     As Jesus spoke like this, many believed in him. 

 

Reflection:

     "Don't it always seem to go, that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone," goes the popular song, "Big Yellow Taxi." It is both a lament and a warning - and ultimately, a call to exercise gratitude on a more regular basis.

     The first reading is an epilogue of sorts to one of the most celebrated miracles of the Old Testament, the parting of the Red Sea. It was an exciting time. With unquestionable might, the Lord delivered His people from decades of slavery and cruelty. From the plagues that paved the way for the Israelites, to their ultimate grand exit, God displayed His power extravagantly.

     And then what? For years, the liberated Israelites wandered in the desert, until they forgot the mighty work that bought their freedom in the first place. It was anti-climactic, to say the least, and they grew restless and complained.

     Are we the same in daily life? Do we get sucked into the dreariness of our routines, the fear that we are going around in circles aimlessly? Then perhaps we have forgotten to see and appreciate what we've been given, what we had all along.

     Gratitude is the memory of the heart. Let's not wait until the blessings are taken away before we start saying thank you.

 

 

WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

 

BIRTHDAY

     JENNY LAXAMANA

 

WEDDING ANNIVERSARY

     PATRICK & BILLIE SYLING

 

IN MEMORIAM (+)

     CONSUELO CUNANAN (MARCH 24, 1914 – JAN 8, 1981)

 

OTHER INTENTIONS:

For Tan Chin Eng, that he regains strength in his limbs and will have the will to live, after his stroke.

 

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most. 

 

Have a good day!

 

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MONDAY, 5th Week of Lent

March 23, 2015 MONDAY, 5th Week of Lent

St. Toribio de Mogrovejo, Bishop

Violet

 

Dn 13: 1-9, 15-17, 19-30, 33-62 / Jn 8: 1-11

 

[Born in Spain, St. Toribio of Mogrovejo (1538-1606) established ecclesiastical discipline in Latin America as Archbishop of Lima.]

 

Reading: Dn 13:1-9, 15-17, 19-30, 33-62

     There lived in Babylon a man named Joakim, who was married to a very beautiful God-fearing woman, Susanna, Hilkiah's daughter, whose pious parents had trained her in the law of Moses. A very rich man and greatly respected by all the Jews, Joakim was frequently visited by the Jews in his house adjoining a garden.

     That year, two elders of the people were appointed judges, in whom this word of the Lord became true, "Wickedness has come forth from Babylon, through the elders appointed judges, who were supposed to govern the people." These men frequented Joakim's house, and all who had legal disputes used to come to them.

       After the people had left at noon, Susanna would go into her husband's garden for a walk. The two old men began to lust for her as they watched her enter the garden every day. Forgetting the demands of justice and virtue, their lust grew all the more as they made no effort to turn their eyes to heaven.

     One day, as they were waiting for an opportune time, Susanna entered the garden as usual with only two maids. She decided to bathe, for it was a hot day. Nobody else was there except the two elders watching her from where they had hidden themselves.

      She said to the maids, "Bring me oil and ointments, and shut the garden doors while I bathe."

     When the maids had left, the two elders hurried to her and said, "Look, the garden doors are shut and no one sees us. We desire to possess you. If you refuse to give in, we will testify that you sent your maids away for there was a young man here with you."

     Susanna moaned, "Whatever I do, I am trapped. If I give in to your desire, it will be death for me; if I refuse, I won't escape your persecution. I would rather be persecuted than sin in the eyes of the Lord."

     Susanna shrieked, but the old men shouted, putting the blame on her. One of them ran and opened the garden doors. Hearing the noise in the garden, the household servants rushed in by the side entrance to see what was happening. They were taken aback when they heard the elders' accusation, for never had anything like this been said of Susanna.

     The next day a meeting was held at Joakim's house. The two elders arrived, vindictively determined to have Susanna sentenced to death. They ordered before all the people, "Send for Susanna, Hilkiah's daughter and Joakim's wife." They sent for her, and she came with her parents, children and all her relatives.

     Her family and friends and all who saw her wept.

     The two elders stood up and laid their hands upon her head. Completely trusting in the Lord, she raised her tearful eyes to heaven.

     The elders started making their accusation, "We were taking a walk in the garden when this woman came in with two maids. She ordered them to shut the garden doors and dismissed them. Then a young man came out of hiding and lay with her. We were in a corner of the garden, and we saw this crime from there. We ran to them, and caught them in the act of embracing. We were unable to take hold of the man. He was too strong for us. He made a dash for the door, opened it and ran off. But we were able to seize this woman. We asked her who the young man was, but she refused to tell us. This is our statement, and we testify to its truth."

     The assembly took their word, since they were elders and judges of the people. Susanna was condemned to death. She cried aloud, "Eternal God, nothing is hidden from you; you know all things before they come to be. You know that these men have testified falsely against me. Would you let me die, though I am not guilty of all their malicious charges?"

     The Lord heard her, and as she was being led to her execution, God aroused the holy spirit residing in a young lad named Daniel. He shouted, "I will have no part in the death of this woman!"

     Those present turned to him, "What did you say?" they all asked.

     Standing in their midst, he said to them, "Have you become fools, you Israelites, to condemn a daughter of Israel without due process and in the absence of clear evidence? Return to court, for those men have testified falsely against her."

     Hurriedly they returned, and the elders said to Daniel, "Come and sit with us, for you also possess the gifts bestowed by God upon the elders."

     Daniel said to the people, "Separate these two from one another and I will examine each of them." 

     When the two elders were separated from each other, Daniel called one of them and said, "How wicked you have grown with age. Your sins of earlier days have piled up against you, and now is the time of reckoning. Remember how you have passed unjust sentences, condemning the innocent and freeing the guilty, although the Lord has said 'The innocent and the just should not be put to death.' Now, if you really witnessed the crime, under what tree did you see them do it?"

     The elder answered, "Under a mastic tree."

     Daniel said, "Your lie will cost you your head. You will be cut in two, as soon as the Lord's angel receives your sentence from God."

     Putting the first one aside, Daniel called the other elder and said to him, "You offspring of Canaan and not of Judah, you have long allowed yourself to be perverted by lust. This is how you have dealt with the daughters of Israel, who out of fear have yielded to you. But here is a daughter of Judah who would not tolerate your wickedness. Tell me then, under what tree did you catch them committing the crime?"

     The answer came, "Under an oak."

     "Your lie has also cost you your head," Daniel said. "God's angel waits to cut you both in two."

     The whole assembly shouted and blessed God for helping those who hope in him. They turned against the two elders who, through Daniel's efforts, had been convicted by their own mouths. In accordance with Moses' law, the penalty the two elders had intended to impose upon their neighbor was inflicted upon them. They were sentenced to death. Thus was the life of an innocent woman spared that day.

 

Gospel: Jn 8:1-11

     At daybreak Jesus appeared in the Temple again. All the people came to him, and he sat down and began to teach them.

     Then the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees brought in a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They made her stand in front of everyone. "Master," they said, "this woman has been caught in the act of adultery. Now the Law of Moses orders that such women be stoned to death; but you, what do you say?" They said this to test Jesus, in order to have some charge against him.

     Jesus bent down and started writing on the ground with his finger. And as they continued to ask him, he straightened up and said to them, "Let anyone among you who has no sin be the first to throw a stone at her." And he bent down again, writing on the ground.

     As a result of these words, they went away, one by one, starting with the elders, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. Then Jesus stood up and said to her, "Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?" She replied, "No one." And Jesus said, "Neither do I condemn you; go away and don't sin again."

 

Reflection:

     Jesus invites us to examine ourselves. There are numerous instances when we tend to judge others, looking at them as unworthy of forgiveness and love. However, we fail to acknowledge our own sinfulness. All of us are sinners. Yet, it is so easy for us to pass judgment on the wrongdoings of others. We find ourselves like the self-righteous Pharisees and teachers of the law who mercilessly and with no compassion wished to exact punishment on presumed sinners like the adulteress in the Gospel.

     When Jesus told them, "Let anyone of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her," one by one the crowd left. They seemed to have felt shame and guilt, perhaps because they themselves have sinned.

     Jesus teaches us to forgive. It is only by forgiving that we allow God back in our lives. The same is true when we become remorseful of a wrongdoing and sin no more; we find ourselves back in the loving embrace of God.

     When we are forgiving, we are not inclined to judge others. We have seen this in Christ's example. His forgiving nature led him to become merciful, patient and compassionate to the adulteress. His forgiveness gave her the chance to repent and be a better person.

 

 

WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

 

BIRTHDAY

     AILEEN SERRANO

 

WEDDING ANNIVERSARY

     JONATHAN & CAROLINE KHONG HUN

     RAUL & SUSAN AQUINO

 

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most. 

 

Have a good day!

 

**************************************************

These reflections are distributed free and are for personal use only. Feel free to send the Daily Prayer reflections to your friends, colleagues and relatives; however, if you do, please include the following: 

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   |  distributed free and for personal use only.  

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