Sunday, July 05, 2015

 

MONDAY, 14th Week in Ordinary Tim

06 July 2015 MONDAY, 14th Week in Ordinary Time 

St. Maria Goretti, Virgin and Martyr  

Green    

     

Gn 28:10 - 22a / Mt 9:18 - 26  

 

[St. Maria Goretti (1890 -1902), Italian, was stabbed to death when she resisted one who wished to seduce her. ]

 

Reading: Gn 28: 10 - 22a

     Jacob left Beersheba and set out for Haran. When he reached a certain place the sun had set and he spent the night there. He took one of the stones that were there and using it as a pillow, he lay down to sleep.

     While Jacob was sleeping, he had a dream in which a ladder stood on the earth with its top reaching to heaven and on it were angels of God going up and coming down. And Yahweh was standing there near him and said, "I am Yahweh, the God of your father, Abraham, and the God of Isaac. The land on which you sleep, I give to you and your descendants. Your descendants will be numerous like the specks of dust of the earth and you will spread out to the west and the east, to the north and the south. Through you and your descendants all the nations of the earth will be blessed. See, I am with you and I will keep you safe wherever you go. I will bring you back to this land and not leave you until I have done what I promised." Jacob woke from his dream and said, "Truly Yahweh was in this place and I was not aware of it." He was afraid and said, "How full of awe is this place! It is nothing less than a House of God; it is the Gate to Heaven!"

     Then Jacob rose early and took the stone he had put under his head and set it up as a pillar and poured oil on the top of it. He named that place Bethel although before that it was called Luz. Then Jacob made a vow, "If Yahweh will be with me and keep me safe during this journey I am making, if he gives me bread to eat and clothes to wear, and if I return in peace to my father's house, then Yahweh will be my God. This stone which I have set up as a pillar will be God's house, and of all that you give me, I will give back a tenth."

 

Gospel: Mt 9:18 – 26

     While Jesus was speaking to them, an official of the synagogue came up to him, bowed before him and said, "My daughter has just died, but come and place your hands on her, and she will live." Jesus stood up and followed him with his disciples.

     Then a woman who had suffered from a severe bleeding for twelve years came up from behind and touched the edge of his cloak. For she thought, "If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed." Jesus turned, saw her and said, "Courage, my daughter, your faith has saved you." And from that moment the woman was cured.

     When Jesus arrived at the official's house and saw the flute players and the excited crowd, he said, "Get out of here! The girl is not dead. She is only sleeping!" And they laughed at him. But once the crowd had been turned out, Jesus went in and took the girl by the hand, and she stood up. The news of this spread through the whole area.

 

Reflection:

     Faith can be developed within us by believing what we cannot physically see. We learn from the testimonies of those who live lives filled with faith. We commemorate the faith of St. Maria Goretti who protected her purity for God's greater glory. She would rather give up her life then succumb to the lustful intentions of her attacker.

     In today's Gospel, the woman who had suffered bleeding for more than 12 years believed that she would be healed by touching the cloak of Jesus. Her simple gesture filled with faith and hope was rewarded by her being healed.

     My own faith was severely tested when my daughter was diagnosed with leukemia. I could not understand why the Lord sent my family this trial. Somehow my daughter's illness strengthened the faith of our family. We started to pray the Rosary together and frequently visited the Adoration Chapel. The word of God became our source of strength and consolation. We were also blessed to go on a pilgrimage to Fatima and Lourdes.

     These trying yet sacred moments made our family realize that God is always there. Whatever we were going through, God helped us realize that he is there by our side.

     Even though my daughter had gone, we are comforted that she is finally in the loving embrace of our Lord. Our lives are now filled with faith even after all these challenges and difficulties. May we continue to build our faith in God through prayer, trust, and perseverance. He is so very good and knows what is best to enrich our faith.

 

 

WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

 

BIRTHDAY

     VIVIAN ALIANAN

 

THANKSGIVING

     LUCIA & ROLAN ONG & FAMILY

 

WEDDING ANNIVERSARY

     SUSANA LIM LORENZO & JOSE LORENZO

 

IN MEMORIAM (+)

     GERMAN SIY

 

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, July 04, 2015

 

14th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

July 5, 2015 - 14th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME 

Cycle B, Green

  

Ez 2:2 - 5 / 2 Cor 12:7 - 10 / Mk 6:1 - 6

 

First Reading: Ez 2:  2 - 5

     A spirit came upon me as he spoke and kept me standing and then I heard him speak, 

     "Son of man, I am sending you to the Israelites, to a people who have rebelled against me; they and their fathers have sinned against me to this day. Now I am sending you to these defiant and stubborn people to tell them 'this is the Lord Yahweh's word.'

     So, whether they listen or not this set of rebels will know there is a prophet among them.

 

Second Reading: 2 Cor 12: 7 - 10

     However, I better give up lest somebody think more of me than what is seen in me or heard from me. Lest I become proud after so many and extraordinary revelations, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a true messenger of Satan, to slap me in the face. Three times I prayed to the Lord that it leave me, but he answered, "My grace is enough for you' my great strength is revealed in weakness."

     Gladly, then, will I boast of my weakness that the strength of Christ may be mine. So I rejoice when I suffer infirmities, humiliations, want, persecutions: all for Christ!  For when I am weak, then I am strong. 

 

Reflection:

     A homecoming is generally expected to be a happy one. Such was not the case with Jesus and his town-mates. His kababayans were not as receptive of him as many others, despite his reputation as a teacher and miracle-worker. It must have been frustrating and very disappointing for Jesus to have town-mates with minds closed to him and thus not ready to welcome and receive him. His own town-mates could not believe how Jesus could have gone so far from their expectations: "How did this come to him? What kind of wisdom has been given to him that he also performs such miracles? Who is he but the carpenter, the son of Mary and the brother of James and Joset and Judas and Simon? His sisters, too, are they not here among us?"  "So they took offense at him."

     The experience of Jesus is not uncommon even today.  We can cite the example of singer Charice Pempengco, now recognized worldwide. In her own country she was not given much attention and recognition. She needed Oprah and David Foster, international luminaries in the entertainment world, to see her great potential. As in other talents, people other than their own, noticed them first. Such is the mystery and irony of human life.

     Similar irony or paradox is seen in the second reading today where Paul boasts and prides himself in his own weaknesses, "Gladly, then, will I boast of my weakness that the strength of Christ may be mine. So I rejoice when I suffer infirmities, humiliations, want, persecutions: all for Christ!  For when I am weak, then I am strong." 

     A profound insight difficult for us to understand. Only the presence and the inspiration of the Spirit of Jesus will enable us to see it.

     Who of us would readily accept insults, hardships and difficulties?  We would be considered fools and out of this world.  But we do wish to accept such difficult and negative experiences not from a masochistic desire for such but because they make us one with the Lord.

     As always Jesus shows us the true way. Death by crucifixion was an insulting and ignominious punishment. But by Jesus' death on the cross, crucifixion has become a symbol for obedience and unconditional love: obedience to his heavenly and love for us. Hopefully when we wear a cross we do so not for show or as a decoration but as a profession of faith in our Lord.

     Many things in our lives are beyond our control. We see these happenings from different perspectives. Is the glass half full? Or half empty? For example, the unwanted pregnancy of an unmarried daughter is truly a problem; but it can also be an opportunity for her family to show support and unconditional love. The child to be born is also a welcome addition to the family and an instance of God's fidelity to the human race.

     We continue to be amazed at the events in our lives. But let us not be utterly discouraged and frustrated because our faith tells us that in God's good time things will turn out well. We do believe that God is always in control. We may be sad and upset but we always hope for the best.

 

 

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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Friday, July 03, 2015

 

SATURDAY, 13th Week in Ordinary Time /

04 July 2015

July 4, 2015 SATURDAY, 13th Week in Ordinary Time /

St. Elizabeth of Portugal, Widow

Green    

           

Gn 27:1 – 5, 15 – 29 / Mt 9:14 – 17

 

[St. Elizabeth of Portugal (1271 – 1336), a daughter of King Peter III of Aragon, showed great charity to the poor and the needy.]

 

Reading: Gn 27:1 – 5, 15 -29

     When Isaac was old and his eyes so weak that he could no longer see, he called Esau, his older son, and said to him, "My son." "Here I am," he answered. Isaac continued, "You see I am old and I don't know when I shall die; so take your weapons, your bow and arrow, go out into the country and hunt some game for me. Then prepare some of the savory food I like and bring it to me so that I may eat and give you my blessing before I die."

     Now Rebekah was listening when Isaac spoke to his son Esau. When Esau went into the country to hunt game and bring it back,

     Then Rebekah took the best clothes of her elder son Esau that she had in the house and put them on Jacob, her younger son. With the goatskin she covered his hands and the smooth part of his neck, and she handed to him the bread and food she had prepared.

     He went to his father and said, "Father!" He answered, "Yes, my son, who is it?" and Jacob said to his father, "It is Esau, your firstborn; I have done what you told me to do. Come, sit up and eat my game so that you may give me your blessing." Isaac said, "How quick you have been my son!" Jacob said, "Yahweh, your God, guided me." Isaac said to Jacob, "Come near and let me feel you, my son, and know that it is you, Esau my son, or not."

     When Jacob drew near to Isaac, his father felt him and said, "The voice is the voice of Jacob but the hands are the hands of Esau." He did not recognize him, for his hands were hairy like the hands of Esau his brother and so he blessed him. He asked, "Are you really my son Esau?" and Jacob answered, "I am." Isaac said, "Bring me some of your game, my son, so that I may eat and give you my blessing." So Jacob brought it to him and he ate. And he brought him wine and he drank. Then his father Isaac said to him, "Come near and kiss me, my son." So Jacob came near and kissed him.

     Isaac then caught the smell of his clothes and blessed him, saying,

     "The smell of my son is like the smell of a field which the Lord has blessed. May God give you of the dew of heaven; and of the richness of the earth; and abundance of grain and wine. Let peoples serve you and nations bow down before you. Be lord over your brothers, and let your mother's sons bow down to you. Cursed be everyone that curses you and blessed be everyone that blesses you!"

 

Reflection:

     The first reading from Genesis is an account of Jacob's duplicity over his elder brother Esau, helped in no small measure by their own mother, Rebekah!    

     Let us reflect on what these stories about Isaac's children teach us. First, the importance of oaths, which, once given, cannot be overturned, and second, how God uses imperfect, flawed men to further his Kingdom. And Jacob himself was duped by his father-in-law over his two wives, Rachel and Leah. 

     The Old Testament has many stories that could pass for modern best-sellers, with complex twists and turns, villains and arch villains. These stories tell us is that there is hope, even for the worst of us.

     What sets these sinners-turned-holy-men-of-God apart is that they obeyed   God and went on to glorify him in the roles that were given to them.   

     And so our faith has endured, over many generations, continuing to give light and salvation to numerous souls, anchored on Christ's coming as man and his sacrifice on the cross for our sins.  It is a truth to which we hold fast.

 

 

WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

 

BIRTHDAY

     CELY LIM FRANCISCO

     PASENCIA SIY

     PHILIP GO SY

     ZACARIAS E. GALLARDO JR.

 

WEDDING ANNIVERSARY

     JONATHAN & JOCELYN SARTE

     MARY & ARSENIO CHUA

     RONALD & AIDA TAGALOG

 

IN MEMORIAM (+)

     GEMINIANO ONG ACERO (SEP 16, 1904 – JUL 4, 1977)

     MATTHEW PATRICK C. SY

 

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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Thursday, July 02, 2015

 

THURSDAY, 13TH Week in Ordinary Time

July 2, 2015 THURSDAY, 13TH Week in Ordinary Time

Sts. Bernardine Realino, John Francis Regis, and Francis de Geronimo,

Bl. Julian Maunoir and Anthony Baldinucci, Priests

Memorial, White 

   

Gn 22:1b-19 / Mt 9:1-8

 

[Today's Memorial is of Jesuit saints and blessed in Europe: Sts. Bernardine Realino, Italian (1530-1616), John Francis Regis, French (1597-1640), and Francis de Geronimo, Italian (1642-1716); Bl. Julian Maunoir, French (1606-1683) and Anthony Baldinucci, Italian (1665-1717). All were engaged in missions and pastoral work in various parts of Europe.]

 

Reading: Gn 22: 1b-19

     Some time later God tested Abraham and said to him, "Abraham!" And he answered, "Here I am." Then God said, "Take your son, your only son, Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I shall point out to you."

     Abraham rose early next morning and saddled his donkey and took with him two of his young men and his son Isaac. He chopped wood for the burnt offering and set out for the place to which God had directed him. On the third day Abraham looked up and saw the place in the distance, and he said to the young men, "Stay here with the donkey. The boy and I will go over there to worship and then we will come back to you."

     Abraham took the wood for the burnt offering and laid it on Isaac his son. He carried in his hand the fire and the knife. As the two of them went on together, Isaac spoke to Abraham, his father, "Father!" And Abraham replied, "Yes, my son?" Isaac said, "The fire and the wood are here, but where is the lamb for the sacrifice?" Abraham replied, "God himself will provide the lamb for the sacrifice." 

     They went on, the two of them together, until they came to the place to which God had directed them. When Abraham had built the altar and set the wood on it, he bound his son Isaac and laid him on the wood placed on the altar. He then stretched out his hand to seize the knife and slay his son. But the Angel of Yahweh called to him from heaven, "Abraham! Abraham!"

     And he said, "Here I am." "Do not lay your hand on the boy; do not harm him, for now I know that you fear God, and you have not held back from me your only son."

     Abraham looked around and saw behind him a ram caught by its horns in a bush. He offered it as a burnt offering in place of his son. Abraham named the place 'The Lord will provide.' And the saying has lasted to this day. 

     And the Angel of Yahweh called from heaven a second time, "By myself I have sworn, it is Yahweh who speaks, because you have done this and not held back your son, your only son, I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the lands of their enemies. All the nations of the earth will be blessed through your descendants because you have obeyed me." 

     So Abraham returned to his servants, and they set off together for Beersheba and it was there that Abraham stayed.

 

Gospel: Mt 9:1-8

   Jesus got back into the boat, crossed the lake again, and came to his hometown. Here they brought a paralyzed man to him, lying on a bed. Jesus saw their faith and said to the paralytic, "Courage, my son! Your sins are forgiven."

   Then some teachers of the Law said to themselves, "This man insults God." Jesus was aware of what they were thinking, and said, "Why have you such evil thoughts? Which is easier to say: 'Your sins are forgiven' or 'Stand up and walk'? You must know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins." He then said to the paralyzed man, "Stand up! Take your stretcher and go home." The man got up, and went home.

   When the crowds saw this, they were filled with awe and praised God for giving such power to human beings

 

Reflection:

   The first reading recounts the sacrifice of Isaac on Mount Moriah. In obedience to God's command, Abraham is about to sacrifice his son as a holocaust when God stops him from doing so. He rewards Abraham for his obedience and faith with more blessings. Do we have this magnificent faith of Abraham? Are we ready to give up our prize possessions, our hard-earned wealth and even our successes if God wants us to? Do we love God above everything, even our own family and friends? The faith of Abraham is so great, and some traditions say that Isaac was also willing to be sacrificed. In other words, both father and son were of one mind. This self-sacrifice prefigures the Passion of our Lord who accepted to die for all men in obedience to God his Father.

   In the Gospel reading, we see the power of Jesus to cure not only the physical illnesses of men but also their spiritual ones. Which is more important for us - to be physically healthy or to be spiritually healthy? Let us desire the second kind of healing more than the first kind because it will bring us to heaven while the other cannot.

     Let us ask to be first cleansed of our sins before asking other graces from God. Jesus is the Divine Healer - we only need to approach him in sincerity and ask for his healing and he will surely heal us, both spiritually and physically

 

 

WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

 

IN MEMORIAM (+)

     BEATRICE LIM LE HUN CO CHAN (DEC 23, 1928 – JUL 2, 2007)

 

OTHER INTENTIONS:

For the complete healing of Anita Lecaros & Peggy Velasco

 

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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FRIDAY, 13TH Week in Ordinary Time

July 3, 3015 FRIDAY, 13TH Week in Ordinary Time

ST. THOMAS, Apostle                                 

Feast, Red

      

Eph 2:19 – 22 / Jn 20: 24 - 29  

 

[St. Thomas, Apostle, is the "doubting" Thomas after the Lord's resurrection.  Tradition says he preached and was martyred in India.]

 

Reading: Eph 2:19 – 22

     Now you are no longer strangers or guests, but fellow citizens of the holy people: you are of the household of God. You are the house whose foundations are the apostles and prophets, and whose cornerstone is Christ Jesus. In him the whole structure is joined together and rises to be a holy temple in the Lord. In him you too are being built to become the spiritual sanctuary of God.

 

Gospel: Jn 20:24 -29 

     Thomas, the Twin, one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came.  The other disciples told him, "We have seen the Lord." But he replied, "Until I have seen in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe." 

     Eight days later, the disciples were inside again and Thomas was with them. Despite the locked doors Jesus came and stood in their midst and said, "Peace be with you."  Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here and see my hands; stretch out your hand and put it into my side. Resist no longer and be a believer." 

     Thomas then said, "You are my Lord and my God." Jesus replied, "You believe because you see me, don't you? Happy are those who have not seen and believe."

   

Reflection:

     One of the biggest dangers in our modern world is that of incredulity. Man has been so intelligent that he starts to question everything and anything, including God. Without faith, all events seem to be man- made or by chance.   

     With this doubt, the Holy Spirit does not exist anymore, therefore all events are explained only from the human point of view. Our interpretation of all our experiences remain at the human level, without the possibility of exploring that God might have intervened.  

     Therefore, many times with this doubt, we fail to understand why things happen, that there is a reason and purpose behind all the events, especially those we do not like nor expect. The cross starts to become more heavy and meaningless when we start doubting about the resurrection of Christ. We don't see the relevance of Christ's coming to the world and our life. When that happens, we enter into gloom and darkness that the evil one envelops us with. We doubt if God is present in the midst of the problem that we are experiencing. This doubt feeds into anger and frustration. We refuse to believe and accept that God has a plan. In our heart, we start to think God does not exist. We dismiss the cross as foolish and become determined to ignore as it is useless and senseless. 

     Today's Gospel reading comes to rescue us and to strengthen our faith in the risen Christ. Christ admonishes us to "resist no longer and be a believer." Christ is calling us today to believe without even seeing. God is real. God exists! He truly cares and loves us. Christ invites us to walk by faith and not by sight!  Let us not doubt the love of God. Unlike Thomas let us believe, even though we have not seen.

 

 

WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

 

BIRTHDAY

     JEFFREY MARVIC CHENG

     LOUIE GIE S. MABUGAY

     PATRICK & JERSHANALE SY

 

IN MEMORIAM (+)

     DOUGLAS L. ABADCO

     JOANNA CHOA (OCT 29, 1914 – JUL 3, 2008)

 

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, June 30, 2015

 

WEDNESDAY, 13th Week in Ordinary Time

July 1, 2015 WEDNESDAY, 13th Week in Ordinary Time 

Bl. Junipero Serra, Priest

Green

       

Gn 21: 5, 8 – 20a / Mt 8: 28 – 34

 

[Blessed Junifero Serra (1713 – 1784), a Spanish Franciscan friar, and his brother Franciscans founded many Spanish missions from San Diego to San Francisco in California from 1769 until his death in 1784.  He was beatified by St. Pope John Paul II on 25 September 1988.]

 

Reading: Gn 21: 5, 8 – 20a

     Abraham was a hundred years old when his son Isaac was born to him.

     The child grew and on the day Isaac was weaned, Abraham held a great feast. Sarah saw the child that Hagar, the Egyptian had borne to Abraham, mocking her son and she said to Abraham, "Send this slave girl and her son away; the child of this slave must not share the inheritance with my son, Isaac." 

     This matter distressed Abraham because it concerned his son, but God  said to him, "Don't be worried about the boy and your maidservant. Listen to Sarah and do whatever she says, because the race which is called by your name will spring from Isaac. But from the son of your servant I will also form a nation, for he too is your offspring."

     Abraham rose early next morning and gave bread and a skin bag of water to Hagar. He put the child on her back and sent her away. She went off and wandered in the desert of Beersheba. When there was no more water in the skin, she pushed the boy under one of the bushes, and then went and sat down about a hundred yards away, for she thought, "I cannot bear to see my son die." 

     But as she sat there, the child began to wail. God heard him and the Angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said, "What is the matter, Hagar? Don't be afraid. God has heard the boy crying. Get up, pick the boy up and hold him safely, for I will make him into a great nation." God then opened her eyes and she saw a well of water. She went and filled the skin and gave the boy a drink.

     God was with the boy. 

 

Gospel: Mt 8:28 - 34

     When Jesus reached Gadara on the other side, he was met by two demoniacs who came out of the tombs. They were so fierce that no one dared to pass that way. Suddenly they shouted, "What do you want from us, you, Son of God? Have you come to torture us before the time?"

     At some distance away there was a large herd of pigs feeding. So the demons begged him, "If you drive us out, send us into that herd of pigs." Jesus ordered them, "Go." So they left and went into the pigs. The whole herd rushed down the cliff into the lake and drowned.

     The men in charge of them ran off to the town, where they told the whole story, also what happened to the men possessed with the demons. Then the whole town went out to meet Jesus; and when they saw him, they begged him to leave their area. 

 

Reflection:

     Today's Gospel reading is about the cure of two men possessed by evil spirits; at the request of the evil spirits themselves, upon leaving the possessed men the evil spirits were allowed to go into a herd of pigs which then rushed down the cliff into the lake and drowned. The herdsmen and the other people of the town were so frightened by what happened that "they begged Jesus to leave their area."

     In a similar incident narrated by Mark and by Luke, the man freed from the demons sought out Jesus to thank him and asked to stay with him. "But Jesus sent him away, 'Go back to your family and tell them how much God has done for you.' So the man went away, proclaiming through the whole town how much Jesus had done for him." (Lk 8: 39)

     On the other hand, the townsfolk were so frightened they begged Jesus to leave their area: all three accounts in the three Synoptic Gospels told the same reaction of the townsfolk. Rather than joining the previously possessed man in his gratitude and joy at his liberation, perhaps out of selfish fear for themselves, they begged Jesus to go and leave their area. The townsfolk failed to see or refused to see the great thing Jesus had done for one in great need.

     Do we appreciate God's continuing goodness to us and to others? Do we thank God for his goodness and graciousness to us? Do we thank God for the goodness of many people around us? Are we at times afraid of God?  Why?

 

 

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, June 29, 2015

 

TUESDAY, 13th Week in Ordinary Time

June 30, 2015 TUESDAY, 13th Week in Ordinary Time 
First Martyrs of the Church of Rome
Green     
         
Gn 19:15 – 29 / Mt 8: 23 – 27

[Many early Christians in Rome gave their lives for their Faith under Emperor Nero about 64 AD.]

Reading: Gn 19:15 – 29
     At daybreak the Angels urged Lot, saying, "Hurry! Take your wife and two daughters who are here, lest they perish because of the sin of the town." As he hesitated, the men took him by the hand and his wife and two daughters with him, because Yahweh had mercy on him. And they led him outside the town.
     When they were outside, the men said to him, "Flee for your life and don't look back and don't stop anywhere in the plain. Flee to the mountain lest you perish."
     But Lot replied, "My lords, your servant has found favor with you, and you have shown me great kindness in saving my life. But I cannot flee to the mountains for fear the disaster will overtake me and I die. See, there is a town near enough for me to flee to and it's a small one. Let me flee there: it is very small (that is why the town is called Zoar). So I will be safe." And the angel answered, "I grant you this favor as well by not destroying the town you speak of. But flee fast for I can do nothing until you arrive there."
     The sun had risen on the earth when Lot reached Zoar. Then Yahweh rained on Sodom and Gomorrah burning sulphur out of the heavens from Yahweh, and he completely destroyed those towns and all the valley and all the inhabitants of the towns and everything that grew there. 
     Lot's wife looked back and she became a pillar of salt.
     Early next morning Abraham returned to the place where he had stood before Yahweh. He looked towards Sodom and Gomorrah and towards all the land of the valley and he saw smoke rising from the earth like the smoke from a furnace.
     So when God destroyed the towns of the plain he remembered Abraham and made Lot escape from the catastrophe while he destroyed the cities where Lot had lived.
  
Gospel: Mt 8:23 - 27
     Jesus got into the boat and his disciples followed him.  Without warning a fierce storm hit the lake, with waves sweeping the boat. But Jesus was asleep.  
     They woke him and cried, saying, "Lord, save us! We are lost!." But Jesus answered "Why are you so afraid, you of little faith?" Then he stood up and ordered the wind and sea; and it became completely calm.
     The people were astonished. They said, "What kind of man is he? Even the winds and sea obey him"

Reflection:
     Mathew relates to us the story of how the disciples were with Jesus during a storm.  Frightened, they woke up Jesus, and after He replied to them, "Why are you so afraid, you of little faith?" And then calmed the winds and the sea.
     Life as we know it is chaotic. Challenges from work, society, government, family, and others bombard us daily with a lot of demands. How many times did we say we already want to give up?  But then again, how many times did we turn to God for his assistance to answer all of these challenges? How many times did we feel we want to surrender but refused to surrender and lift everything to him?  
     Getting caught in a storm is no joke. We empathize for our brothers and sisters who endured the wrath of super typhoon Yolanda. If we were in that same situation, our thoughts and prayers would most definitely be crying out to God to save us. It's a very human reaction. The wind howls and we feel so fragile when everything around us gets blown away.
     Jesus reassures his friends that, though the storm rages on, his power will calm the surge of the water. His hand will bring peace to all this turmoil. We just need to strengthen our faith in a God who is more powerful than all these earthly elements. His hand is there to protect us and bring us to safety.
     God wants us to know that we need not be afraid. He can build up what has been demolished. He can find what has been lost. He makes new the things in our life that might have crumbled to dust or might have been washed away. He is a God who leads us to a better life as long as we continue to have faith in him.
     Jesus, thank you for being there even though we question our faith to you daily.  At the end of the day everything here is all lifted up to you.


WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

WEDDING ANNIVERSARY
     ROBIN AND ANGEL ROQUE

IN MEMORIAM (+)
     JOSE LORENZO A. TAN

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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Sunday, June 28, 2015

 

MONDAY, 13TH Week in Ordinary Time

June 29, 2015 MONDAY, 13TH Week in Ordinary Time

Sts. Peter and Paul, Apostles

Solemnity, Red    

 

Vigil:   Acts 3: 1 – 10 / Gal 1: 11 – 20 / Jn 21: 15 - 19

Day:   Acts 12: 1 - 11 / 2 Tm 4: 6 - 8, 17 – 18 / Mt 16: 13 -19

 

From the Gospel Reading for the Vigil: Jn 21: 15  - 17   

     Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?" He answered, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you." And Jesus said, "Feed my lambs." . . .

     And a third time he said to him, "Simon, son of John, do you love me?" Peter was saddened because Jesus asked him a third time, "Do you love me?" and he answered, "Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you."  Jesus then said, "Feed my sheep."

 

First Reading: Acts 12: 1 – 11

     About that time King Herod decided to persecute some members of the Church. He had James, the brother of John, killed with the sword, and when he saw how it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to arrest Peter also.

     This happened during the festival of the Unleavened Bread. Herod had him seized and thrown into prison with four squads, each of four soldiers, to guard him. He wanted to bring him to trial before the people after the Passover feast, but while Peter was kept in prison, the whole Church prayed earnestly for him.

     On the very night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound by a double chain, while guards kept watch at the gate of the prison.

     Suddenly an angel of the Lord stood there and a light shone in the prison cell. The angel tapped Peter on the side and woke him saying, "Get up quickly!" At once the chains fell from Peter's wrists. The angel said, "Put on your belt and your sandals." Peter did so, and the angel added, "Now, put on your cloak and follow me."

     Peter followed him out; yet he did not realize that what was happening with the angel was real; he thought he was seeing a vision. They passed the first guard and then the second and they came to the iron door leading out to the city, which opened of itself for them. They went out and made their way down a narrow alley, when suddenly the angel left him.

     Then Peter recovered his senses and said, "Now I know that the Lord has sent his angel and has rescued me from Herod's clutches and from all that the Jews had in store for me."

  

Second Reading: 2 Tm 4: 6 - 8, 17 – 18

     As for me, I am already poured out as a libation, and the moment of my departure has come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness with which the Lord, the just judge, will reward me on that day; and not only me, but all those who have longed for his glorious coming.

     But the Lord was at my side, giving me strength to proclaim the Word fully, and let all the pagans hear it. So I was rescued from the lion's mouth. The Lord will save me from all evil, bringing me to his heavenly kingdom. Glory to him for ever and ever. Amen!

 

Gospel: Mt 16:13  - 19   

     After that Jesus came to Caesarea Philippi. He asked his disciples, "What do people say of the Son of Man?  Who do they say I am?" They said, "For some of them you are John the Baptist, for others Elijah or Jeremiah or one of the prophets." 

     Jesus asked them, "But who do you say I am?" Peter answered, "You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God." Jesus replied, "It is well for you, Simon Barjona, for it is not flesh or blood that has revealed this to you but my Father in heaven. 

     "And now I say to you: You are Peter (or Rock) and on this rock I will build my Church; and never will the powers of death overcome it. 

     "I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you unbind on earth shall be unbound in heaven."  

 

Reflection:

     The Church celebrates the lives of Sts. Peter and Paul, the great pillars and apostles of the Church: Peter on whom the Church was founded and Paul the great Apostle to the Gentiles. They represent the faith of the Church, holy yet always in need of God's healing grace. The Church is holy because God who gathers us into community is holy. Yet, as a community deeply immersed in the world, we are constantly in need of purification from God.

     In the post-resurrection scene in the Gospel reading for the Vigil, Jesus appears to the disciples at the Sea of Galilee. Jesus invites them to a breakfast he had prepared, including their miraculous catch of fish.

     Despite his triple denial during the trial of Jesus, Peter is confirmed as head of the Church, as the rock on which the Church of Christ is founded. Three times Peter is asked, "Do you love me?" Three times Peter affirms his love, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you." "Lord, you know everything; you know I love you." Jesus gives him his mission, "Feed my lambs," "Look after my sheep." "Feed my sheep. Follow me."

     Peter realizes how Jesus was calling him back into his fold, his love and trust. He hears the Master's comforting voice once again, "Truly, I say to you, when you were young you put your belt and walked where you liked. But when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands and another will put a belt around you and lead you where you do not wish to go." The evangelist added, "Jesus said this to make known the kind of death by which Peter was to glorify God."

     In similar fashion Jesus comes to us in moments and places we least expect. His presence is most felt and his call most audible when we need him, when we are most vulnerable, even when we are at times sinful. These come as perfect  opportunities for his healing love to be felt by us.

     Such are his presence and call that, like Peter or Paul, we simply drop everything when we hear his gentle and loving call. He said that he came not for the righteous but for sinners and for those in need of healing, like we are. He is after all the God of the broken.

 

 

WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:

 

BIRTHDAY

     KENNETH L. YAO

     RODY G. BAGABALDO

 

IN MEMORIAM (+)

     NATIONAL ARTIST PERLA D. SANTOS-OCAMPO

     MARY ELIZABETH L. YU (OCT 30, 1935 – JUN 29, 1999)

 

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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