Monday, September 29, 2014

 

Tuesday 26th Week in Ordinary Time

September 30, 2014

Tuesday 26th Week in Ordinary Time

[St. Jerome, priest and doctor]  

 

Jb 3: 1-3, 11-17, 20-23 / Ps 88:2-3, 4-5, 6, 7-8 / Lk 9: 51-56 

 

Reading: Jb 3: 1-3, 11-17, 20-23    

At length it was Job who spoke, cursing the day of his birth. This is what he said: Cursed be the day I was born, and the night which whispered: A boy has been conceived. Why didn't I die at birth, or come from the womb without breath? Why the knees that received me, why the breasts that suckled me? For then I should have lain down asleep and been at rest with kings and rulers of the earth who built for themselves lonely tombs; or with princes who had gold to spare and houses stuffed with silver. Why was I not stillborn, like others who did not see the light of morn? There the trouble of the wicked ceases, there the weary find repose. Why is light given to the miserable, and life to the embittered? To those who long for death more than for hidden treasure? They rejoice at the sight of their end, they are happy upon reaching the grave. Why give light to a man whose path has vanished, whose ways God blocks at every side? 

 

Gospel: Luke 9: 51-56

As the time drew near when Jesus would be taken up to heaven, he made up his mind to go to Jerusalem. He had sent ahead of him some messengers who entered a Samaritan village to prepare a lodging for him. But the people would not receive him because he was on his way to Jerusalem. Seeing this, James and John, his disciples said, "Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven to reduce them to ashes?" Jesus turned and rebuked them, and they went on to another village.

 

Reflection:

     For us Filipinos who are known for our hospitality, the gospel narrative about Jesus being refused lodging in a Samaritan village may seem disturbing. But in those times, the hostility between Samaritans and Jews was part of the cultural landscape. For one, Samaritans did not believe that the temple of Jerusalem was the proper site for worship. So, learning that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem, the Samaritans would not welcome him. The reaction of James and John - to seek heaven to destroy the village - may seem rash and violent; but they were clearly trying to protect and defend Jesus. Their intent - to pray for the opponent to be punished - may even strike us as normal, human and commonplace.  When we are rejected, offended or unjustly treated, we want to strike back at these people. We ask and expect God to take our side, defend our cause and destroy our opponents.  

     But Jesus reacts to the Samaritan rejection differently from his disciples. In fact, Jesus rebukes them for their vindictive attitude. Faced with opposition and resistance, Jesus' way is not to hit back and destroy those who reject him, those who differ from him. He accepts and respects the freedom of his opponents. Furthermore, Jesus is practical and single-minded. He does not allow this rejection to distract him from his destination - Jerusalem.  

     The gospel invites us to examine our attitudes towards those who differ from us.  Are we tolerant of those who do not share our beliefs? Do we respect their freedom? How do we react in front of obstacles to our good intentions and projects on behalf of the Lord? Can we find the practical wisdom like Jesus, to be tolerant, patient and calm in front of opposition and conflict and still keep our sights and mind set on our mission?   

 

Prayer Requests:

We pray ...

... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn

... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary

... for families who are in need of healing

... for world peace and reconciliation

 

... for blessing - Lea, MJ & Gab, and family

 

... for wisdom, perseverance and clarity of mind as they prepare and take their exams:

     * Dennis Puno who takes the Mechanical Engineering Board Exams on October 3 - 4, 2014

     * Karen Tuala who takes the bar exams on the coming four (4) consecutive weekends

 

... For Alfredo Garcia, Jr. - May perpetual light shine upon him.

 

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, September 28, 2014

 

Monday 26th Week in Ordinary Time

September 29, 2014
Monday 26th Week in Ordinary Time
[Feast, Sts. Michael, Gabriel, Raphael, Archangels]

Dn 7: 9-10, 13-14 or Rv 12: 7-12A / PS 138: 1-2AB, 2CDE-3, 4-5 / Jn 1: 47-51

Reading: Dn 7: 9-10, 13-14
I looked and saw the following: Some thrones were set in place and One of Great Age took his seat. His robe was white as snow, his hair white as washed wool. His throne was flames of fire with wheels of blazing fire. A river of fire sprang forth and flowed before him. Thousands upon thousands served him and a countless multitude stood before him. Those in the tribunal took their seats and opened the book. I continued watching the nocturnal vision: One like a son of man came on the clouds of heaven. He faced the One of Great Age and was brought into his presence. Dominion, honor and kingship were given him, and all the peoples and nations of every language served him. His dominion is eternal and shall never pass away; his kingdom will never be destroyed.   

Gospel: John 1: 47 - 51
When Jesus saw Nathanael coming, he said of him, "Here comes an Israelite, a true one; there is nothing false in him." Nathanael asked him, "How do you know me?" And Jesus said to him, "Before Philip called you, you were under the fig tree and I saw you." Nathanael answered, "Master, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!" But Jesus replied, "You believe because I said: 'I saw you under the fig tree.' But you will see greater things than that. Truly, I say to you, you will see the heavens open and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man."

Reflection:
     Today is the feast of the three archangels: Gabriel, Michael and Raphael. Each of them had a special mission that God designed for them. Gabriel was the messenger of Good News to Mary. Michael was the warrior of God against Lucifer. Raphael helped the virtuous man Tobit get medicine to cure the blindness of his father.
     The gospel presents to us Jesus meeting Nathanael whom he called a true Israelite. It did not often happen that persons invited by Jesus to join him would be called true Israelite by him. Jesus spoke of Nathanael as the one he saw "under the fig tree." For the Jews, the fig tree was a common place for prayer. It means that Nathanael most probably was praying when Philip found him under the fig tree. Perhaps he was praying for the coming of the Messiah. That must be why Jesus refers to him as a true Israelite.
     Jesus answered Nathanael with something he had heard from Scriptures about angels.  In the Old Testament, there are many accounts of angels appearing to pious Jew such as Abraham, Jacob, Tobias, Sarah, etc. There is a spirit world that exists and angels have been designated to be the servants of God and Jesus Christ. Their duty is to protect God and His people, including us. There is no reason not to believe in their existence.  Instead, we must be grateful to have such powerful and holy protectors and we should often seek their help in times of physical and spiritual danger.
     Are we prayerful people like Nathanael was?  Do we believe in a spirit world inhabited by the angels and the saints?  Today's feast invites us to believe that the world inhabited by God is more beautiful than ours and therefore we must often seek it in our hearts.

Prayer Requests:
We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn
... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary
... for families who are in need of healing
... for world peace and reconciliation

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, September 27, 2014

 

26th Sunday in Ordinary Time

September 28, 2014
26th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Ez 18: 25-28 / Ps 25: 4-5, 6-7, 8-9 (6a) / Phil 2: 1-11 or 2:1-5 / Mt 21: 28-32

First Reading: Ezekiel 18: 25-28
But you say: Yahweh's way is not just! Why, Israel! Is my position wrong? Is it not rather that yours is wrong?  If the righteous man dies after turning from his righteous deeds and sinning, he dies because of his sins. And if the wicked man does what is good and right, after turning from the sins he committed, he will save his life. He will live and not die, because he has opened his eyes and turned from the sins he had committed.

Second Reading: Philippians 2: 1-11 or 2:1-5
If I may advise you in the name of Christ and if you can hear it as the voice of love; if we share the same spirit and are capable of mercy and compassion, then I beg of you make me very happy: have one love, one spirit, one feeling, do nothing through rivalry or vain conceit. On the contrary let each of you gently consider the others as more important than yourselves. Do not seek your own interest, but rather that of others. Your attitude should be the same as Jesus Christ had: Though he was in the form of God, he did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped, 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: Matthew 21:28-32   
Jesus went on to say, "What do you think of this? A man had two sons. He went to the first and said to him: 'Son, today go and work in my vineyard.' And the son answered: 'I don't want to.' But later he thought better of it and went. Then the father went to the second and gave him the same command. This son replied: 'I will go, sir,' but he did not go. Which of the two did what the father wanted?" They answered, "The first." And Jesus said to them, "Truly, I say to you: the publicans and the prostitutes are ahead of you on the way to the kingdom of heaven. For John came to show you the way of goodness but you did not believe him, yet the publicans and the prostitutes did. You were witnesses of this, but you neither repented nor believed him.

Reflection:
     This parable teaches us that God wants everyone to enter into His Kingdom. The father made it clear to his sons that he wanted them to be in his vineyard, no other place. The father in the parable represents the loving God. He thinks of no other option for every human being whom He created but to be in His kingdom. God is not like an angry despot who would send everyone he dislikes to condemnation. Rather, our God is a loving and a merciful God who wants every person to be saved and be spared from condemnation. Hell is not God's option for sinners. Hell, however, is the sinners' option for themselves. The father summoned his sons to go but he never forced them to obey. This tells us that every person is responsible for the decision and response he makes to God's invitation.
     God extends his invitation to all. The father approached both his sons and told them to go to his vineyard. This parable corrects the error of God's selective election. God calls to salvation the good and the bad. He calls to salvation the religious and the pagans, the Jews and the Gentiles, as Paul says, "God is not a respecter of person." Jesus said: "The prostitutes and the tax-collectors are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you." Jesus did not say that you will enter God's kingdom even if you live a life of sin. Jesus is saying instead that God is extending His invitation to everyone to enter His kingdom regardless of their moral and religious condition, provided of course they repent. No one is in a better spiritual position than any other person. There is nothing that could make God reject anyone who would come to Him. In this parable Jesus indicates the principle that when a person accepts God's invitation to belong to His kingdom, he would never live his life as he wants, but as God wants. The first son in the parable refused to obey his father. But when he came to his senses, he repented and went. The word "repent" means to change, to turn. The first son changed and turned from his self-chosen life of rebellion and selfishness. He started living his life no longer as he wanted, but as his father wanted.
     The second son said "I go, sir" But he failed; he never did go to work for his father. He worked and lived as he wished, disregarding the father entirely. Jesus said to the Pharisees: "You are the second son. You lived as you wanted. You disregarded the way, the word, and the will of God. You will never enter the kingdom of God unless you repent and change." They were condemned because they lived a life of lie to God. They said one thing, and did something else. Their actions did not match their confession and profession. We should be careful to avoid the sin of the second son. If we say we are going to do something especially about your spiritual relationship with God, we better do it.
     We must remember that in life, it is not how we start that matters, it is how we finish. Paul started out as Saul of Tarsus killing Christians, but he ended up a great man of God. Judas started out as a faithful follower of Jesus, but he ended up a traitor who killed himself. Entering God's Kingdom means living the way God wants us to live, not the way we want. The bible tells us that God saves us because of His mercy, not because of the righteous things we have done. He accepts us regardless of who we are. As we enter His kingdom and become His people, we are no longer to live our life as we want or as we wish, but as God wants it.

Prayer Requests:
We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn
... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary
... for families who are in need of healing
... for world peace and reconciliation

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, September 26, 2014

 

Saturday 25th Week in Ordinary Time

September 27, 2014
Saturday 25th Week in Ordinary Time
[St. Vincent de Paul]

Eccl 11: 9 - 12: 8 / Ps 90: 3-4, 5-6, 12-13, 14 and 17/ Lk 9: 43b-45

Reading: Eccl 11: 9 - 12: 8
Rejoice, young man, in your youth and direct well your heart when you are young; follow your desires and achieve your ambitions but recall that God will take account of all you do. Drive sorrow from your heart and pain from your flesh, for youth and dark hair will not last. Be mindful of your Creator when you are young, before the time of sorrow comes when you have to say, "This gives me no pleasure," and before the sun, moon and stars withdraw their light, before the clouds gather again after the rain. On the day when the guardians of the house tremble, when sturdy men are bowed and those at the mill stop working because they are too few, when it grows dim for those looking through the windows, and the doors are shut and the noise of the mill grows faint, the sparrow stops chirping and the bird-song is silenced, when one fears the slopes and to walk is frightening; yet the almond tree blossoms, the grasshopper is fat and the caperberry bears fruit that serves no purpose, because man goes forward to his eternal home and mourners gather in the street, even before the silver chain is snapped or the golden globe is shattered, before the pitcher is broken at the fountain or the wheel at the mill, before the dust returns to the earth from which it came and the spirit returns to God who gave it. Meaningless! meaningless! the Teacher says; all is meaningless!   

Gospel: Luke 9: 43-45
And all who saw it were astonished at God's wonderful work. While all were amazed at everything Jesus did, he said to his disciples, "Listen and remember what I tell you now: The Son of Man will be delivered into human hands." But the disciples didn't understand this saying; something prevented them from grasping what he meant, and they were afraid to ask him about it.

Reflection:
     Jesus knew what his fate would be when  he came to this earth. But he loved us so much that he fulfilled his fate and died for us. He could have stayed in heaven with our Father.  Since we are his children, his brothers and sisters, he gave his last breath to free us from sin and to help open our eyes to the wonder and glory of God.
     We live by this belief to stay in joyful hope that Jesus will once again be with us. We put this into practice by living out what he taught us. We honor his sacrifice every time we attend Mass and participate wholeheartedly in the liturgy. We strive to love in the manner he loves us.
     That's why we try to remind ourselves about the cost of loving like he did. That means being ridiculed and misunderstood. It might even mean sacrificing our own lives for the faith.  But, with all the countless missionaries and martyrs that bravely proclaimed this good news, their sacrifice has only strengthened our church. Pope Francis invites us to do the same by bringing more joy into our lives. Because the one who follows Christ must be able to share that happiness with others. We won't be effective missionaries if our faces reflect gloom and doom.
     Christ is the reason we live.  We hopefully can preach this joyfully and let the whole world know how much we are loved by God.

Prayer Requests:
We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn
... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary
... for families who are in need of healing
... for world peace and reconciliation

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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Thursday, September 25, 2014

 

Friday 25th Week in Ordinary Time

September 26, 2014
Friday 25th Week in Ordinary Time
[Sts. Cosmas and Damian]

Eccl 3: 1-11 / Ps 144: 1b and 2abc, 3-4 / Lk 9: 18-22

Reading: Eccl 3: 1-11
There is a given time for everything and a time for every happening under heaven: A time for giving birth, a time for dying; a time for planting, a time for uprooting. A time for killing, a time for healing; a time for knocking down, a time for building. A time for tears, a time for laughter; a time for mourning, a time for dancing. A time for throwing stones, a time for gathering stones; a time for embracing, a time to refrain from em-bracing. A time for searching, a time for losing; a time for keeping, a time for throwing away. A time for tearing, a time for sewing; a time to be silent and a time to speak. A time for loving, a time for hating; a time for war, a time for peace. What profit is there for a man from all his toils? Finally I considered the task God gave to the humans. He made everything fitting in its time, but he also set eternity in their hearts, although man is not able to embrace the work of God from the beginning to the end.   

Gospel: Luke 9: 18-22
One day when Jesus was praying alone, not far from his disciples, he asked them, "What do people say about me?" And they answered, "Some say that you are John the Baptist; others say that you are Elijah, and still others that you are one of the former prophets risen from the dead." Again Jesus asked them, "Who then do you say I am?" Peter answered, "The Messiah of God." Then Jesus spoke to them, giving them strict orders not to tell this to anyone. And he added, "The Son of Man must suffer many things. He will be rejected by the elders and chief priests and teachers of the Law, and put to death. Then after three days he will be raised to life."

Reflection:
     Today's Catholics, if asked the same question by Jesus, would probably answer:  "God, God the Son, Our Creator, Our Lord and Savior, Our Redeemer, the Word Made Flesh, the Only Begotten Son of the Father, the son of Mary, the Christ, true God and true Man" - for all these, he truly is.  Unlike the apostles of his time, our strict instruction now is to tell this to everyone.
     The apostles were not sure who Jesus was. They learned who he was only much later, after witnessing his death and resurrection, and they proclaimed who Jesus was to all the nations so that they would be saved, even at the cost of their own lives. All the apostles, except St. John, died a martyr's death. Now we know who Jesus really is.  His life, death and resurrection proved this to us. We are blessed because God gave us the grace to know this. We must realize how important this knowledge is to us; our eternal life depends on it. We know that " in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God; he was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him and without him nothing came to be." (Jn 1:1-3)  God originally intended eternal life to our first parents, but because of disobedience and pride, they lost it. So for our salvation, the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, in order to redeem for us the eternal life which was lost.  We know that he suffered and died on the cross for us in order to achieve this redemption. We must tell what we know to everyone so that they would not reject this eternal life redeemed for us by Jesus Christ.

Prayer Requests:
We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn
... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary
... for families who are in need of healing
... for world peace and reconciliation

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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Thursday 25th Week in Ordinary Time

September 25, 2014
Thursday 25th Week in Ordinary Time

Eccl 1: 2-11/ Ps 90: 3-4, 5-6, 12-13, 14 and 17bc / Lk 9: 7-9

Reading: Eccl 1: 2-11
All is meaningless - says the Teacher - meaningless, meaningless! What profit is there for a man in all his work for which he toils under the sun? A generation goes, a generation comes and the earth remains forever. The sun rises, the sun sets, hastening towards the place where it again rises. Blowing to the south, turning to the north, the wind goes round and round and after all its rounds it has to blow again. All rivers go to the sea but the sea is not full; to the place where the rivers come from, there they return again. All words become weary and speech comes to an end, but the eye has never seen enough nor the ear heard too much. What has happened before will happen again; what has been done before will be done again: there is nothing new under the sun. If they say to you, "See, it's new!" know that it has already been centuries earlier. There is no remembrance of ancient people, and those to come will not be remembered by those who follow them.   

Gospel: Luke 9:7-9
King Herod heard of all this and did not know what to think, for people said, "This is John, raised from the dead." Others believed that Elijah or one of the ancient prophets had come back to life.  As for Herod, he said, "I had John beheaded; who is this man about whom I hear such wonders?" And he was anxious to see him.

Reflection:
     King Herod had John beheaded because John told him the truth and he could not accept it because of his ambitions and pride.
     Today, some of us are like King Herod. We are having difficulty in accepting the teachings of Jesus even if we have studied in Catholic schools and hear mass on Sundays regularly. We only accept the teachings that we like and are easy to follow but disregard the teachings that we find hard to obey and follow. The challenge for us is to make the gospel come alive in our daily lives.  Do we teach our teenage sons and daughters that premarital sex is not acceptable? Do we believe in the sacredness of marriage and are against divorce? Do we oppose the provisions in the RH bill that are against life? Do we disobey basic traffic rules and contribute to corruption by bribing the policeman as a convenient habit? Do we have shady business dealings? Are we struggling to forgive the people who have hurt us?
     God's word is absolute. Black is black and white is white. There are no gray areas. We cannot compromise the teachings of Jesus. As Catholics, our goal is to be like John, who dared to speak against those in powerful positions and to make known the truth no matter if it meant danger and imminent death. The truth will set us free from the bondages that we have created for ourselves.

Prayer Requests:
We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn
... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary
... for families who are in need of healing
... for world peace and reconciliation
... for the special intentions of:
     * early recovery and good health of Egypt Padilla
     * safety of Ma. Fatima Nona

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:

  +================================================+
   |  The Daily Prayer, a service and an apostolate of the
   |  priests, laity and friends of Mary the Queen Parish
   |            http://www.marythequeen.org
   |  Distributed free and for personal use only. 
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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

 

Wednesday 25th Week in Ordinary Time

September 24, 2014
Wednesday 25th Week in Ordinary Time

Prv 30:5-9  / Ps 119:29, 72, 89, 101, 104, 163 / Lk 9:1-6        
 
Reading: Prv 30:5-9  
Every word of God is true, he is a shield in whom man can find refuge. Add nothing to his words lest he rebuke you and take you for a liar. O God, two things I beg of you, do not deny me them before I die. Keep lying and falsehood far away from me, give me neither poverty nor riches. Give me just as much food as I need lest, satisfied, I deny you and say, "Who is Yahweh?" Or else, out of necessity, I steal and profane the name of my God.    

Gospel: Luke 9: 1-6
Then Jesus called his twelve disciples and gave them power and authority to drive out all evil spirits and to heal diseases. And he sent them to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. He instructed them, "Don't take anything for the journey, neither walking stick, nor bag, nor bread, nor silver coins; and don't even take a spare tunic. Whatever house you enter, remain there until you leave that place. And wherever they don't welcome you, leave the town and shake the dust from your feet: it will be as a testimony against them." So they set out and went through the villages, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.

Reflection:
     In the first reading, there is a very good saying: "Do not give me poverty or riches, just my share of bread to eat. Because if I have riches, I might forget God. And if I am destitute, I might turn to stealing." How true this saying is. There are many people who when they become rich, forget God or indulge in so many pleasures that lead them to a very worldly lifestyle. Money is indeed the root of all evil.  It makes a person a slave of material things and pleasures and brings people away from God. On the other hand, the poor man might turn to stealing when he can no longer endure his feelings of hunger. Or else in desperation and concern for his suffering family, he becomes a criminal to obtain food. What is the moral of this 'story'? Let those who have money in excess give to those in want. Let the poor man not feel ashamed to receive charity because money is meant to be shared. A society that takes care of its poor people is obeying the commandment of God to love thy neighbor.  In the Acts of the Apostles, there were deacons who took care of the needs of the poor, the widows and the orphans. As for us, let us not desire more than our daily needs lest we become slaves of money. Let us live simply and share what we have.
     In the gospel, the apostles went around sharing not money, but the Good News of the kingdom. They brought no food or money with them to show to others that their mission was to make people aware of another kingdom superior to our material world.  They urged people to live with the desire for the heavenly kingdom.  

Prayer Requests:
We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn. 
... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
... for families who are in need of healing.
... for world peace and reconciliation.

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: 

  +================================================+
   |  The Daily Prayer, a service and an apostolate of the
   |  priests, laity and friends of Mary the Queen Parish
   |            http://www.marythequeen.org
   |  Distributed free and for personal use only.  
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Monday, September 22, 2014

 

Tuesday 25th Week in Ordinary Time

September 23, 2014
Tuesday 25th Week in Ordinary Time
[St. Pio of Petrelcina]       

Prv 21: 1-6, 10-13 / Ps 119:1, 27, 30, 34, 35, 44 / Lk 8: 19-21 

Reading: Prv 21: 1-6, 10-13
In the hands of Yahweh, the heart of the king is like running water; he directs it wherever he wishes. To the eyes of man all his ways are honest but it is Yahweh who weighs the heart. To do what is upright and just pleases Yahweh more than sacrifice. Haughty looks, proud heart, the light of the wicked is sin. The plans of a hardworking man result in earnings; poverty is for those who act too hastily. To make a fortune by means of deceit is like running after the wind; the end is death. The soul of the wicked desires nothing but evil; not even his friend is treated with compassion. When the mocker is punished the ignorant man grows wise; when the wise man is instructed he grows in knowledge. The Just One watches the house of the evildoer and hurls the wicked into misfortune. He who is deaf to the poor man's cry will not be heard when he himself calls out.    

Gospel: Luke 8: 19-21
Then his mother and his relatives came to him, but they could not get to him because of the crowd. Someone told him, "Your mother and your brothers are standing outside and wish to meet you." Then Jesus answered, "My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it."

Reflection:
     Many cultures, including Filipinos, value family ties and blood relations. It was so, even in the time of Jesus of Nazareth.  In today's gospel, Jesus redefines who his family is. He bases his kinship not on traditional blood or family relations, but on the way one responds to the Word of God. For Jesus, family refers to persons who listen to him, sincerely seeking God's word and will in their lives. For Jesus, the ties that really matter are in relation to God the Father and Creator of all.  Those who hear and do God's Word, whether they are related to him by blood or not, they are his Family.  Jesus thus expands and reinvents the meaning and nature of Family. Family is now about sharing the same spirit, faith and solidarity with Jesus Christ. Jesus' whole mission was to proclaim and inaugurate the reign of God.  In this new scheme of things, the new human family is the Church, the assembly of believers, the Christian community.
     The Good News is that because of God's love, even today we can belong to Jesus' Family.  Indeed, our baptism initiated us into the Church; in Jesus, with him and through him, we become adopted sons and daughters of God. We have one Father, we are brothers and sisters in Christ. Our baptism gives us the same Spirit of Jesus, the power to desire, to seek and to fulfill the Word and will of God in our life.  
     As individuals, are we happy to belong to the Church, the family of Jesus?  Are we part of a faith community where we can walk and grow as Jesus' brothers and sisters in listening to the Word of God? Assuming that our blood family members have been baptized, what difference does our baptism and brotherhood in Christ make within our family relations?  How do we relate to other people in our parish?  Belonging to the family of Jesus is indeed a precious gift and task.

Prayer Requests:
We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn
... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary
... for families who are in need of healing
... for world peace and reconciliation
... for the birthday intentions of Gabbie & Michelle de Guzman
... for the personal intentions of Beny Chua
... for the eternal repose of Gertrudes J. Marasigan

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: 

  +================================================+
   |  The Daily Prayer, a service and an apostolate of the
   |  priests, laity and friends of Mary the Queen Parish
   |            http://www.marythequeen.org
   |  Distributed free and for personal use only.  
  +================================================+

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