Thursday, July 28, 2005



JULY 29, 2005

LEVITICUS 23:1, 4-11, 15-16, 27, 34B-37
The LORD said to Moses, "These are the festivals of the LORD which you
shall celebrate at their proper time with a sacred assembly. The
Passover of the LORD falls on the fourteenth day of the first month, at
the evening twilight. The fifteenth day of this month is the LORD's
feast of Unleavened Bread. For seven days you shall eat unleavened
bread. On the first of these days you shall hold a sacred assembly and
do no sort of work. On each of the seven days you shall offer an
oblation to the LORD Then on the seventh day you shall again hold a
sacred assembly and do no sort of work." The LORD said to Moses,
"Speak to the children of Israel and tell them: When you come into the
land which I am giving you, and reap your harvest, you shall bring a
sheaf of the first fruits of your harvest to the priest, who shall wave
the sheaf before the LORD that it may be acceptable for you. On the day
after the sabbath the priest shall do this. "Beginning with the day
after the sabbath, the day on which you bring the wave-offering sheaf,
you shall count seven full weeks, and then on the day after the seventh
week, the fiftieth day, you shall present the new cereal offering to
the LORD. "The tenth of this seventh month is the Day of Atonement,
when you shall hold a sacred assembly and mortify yourselves and offer
an oblation to the LORD. "The fifteenth day of this seventh month is
the LORD's feast of Booths, which shall continue for seven days. On the
first day there shall be a sacred assembly, and you shall do no sort of
work. For seven days you shall offer an oblation to the LORD, and on
the eighth day you shall again hold a sacred assembly and offer an
oblation to the LORD. On that solemn closing you shall do no sort of
work. "These, therefore, are the festivals of the LORD on which you
shall proclaim a sacred assembly, and offer as an oblation to the LORD
burnt offerings and cereal offerings, sacrifices and libations, as
prescribed for each day."

JOHN 11:19-27
Many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them about
their brother [Lazarus, who had died]. When Martha heard that Jesus was
coming, she went to meet him; but Mary sat at home. Martha said to
Jesus, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But
even now I know that whatever you ask of God, God will give you." Jesus
said to her, "Your brother will rise." Martha said to him, "I know he
will rise, in the resurrection on the last day." Jesus told her, "I am
the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies,
will live, and anyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do
you believe this?" She said to him, "Yes, Lord. I have come to believe
that you are the Christ, the Son of God, the one who is coming into the

Martha was an ordinary woman who welcomed Jesus as He passed through
her village (Luke 10:38-42). Jesus rebuked her for complaining that
her sister, Mary, should be helping her and not sitting around
listening to Him. We can imagine her embarrassment and frustration.

Yet, in today's Gospel reading from St. John, we see Martha coming out
to meet Jesus who heard about the death of her brother, Lazarus.
Perhaps Martha was trying again to be hospitable or polite as she
vainly tries to hide her disappointment and frustration that Jesus may
have saved her brother if He had come earlier. We can imagine Martha
trying to suppress her feelings of "masamang loob" or ill will as Jesus
rebuked her once again when He said He is the resurrection and the

But Martha brushes whatever bad feelings she has and answers Jesus that
she believes He is the Messiah. St. Martha, at that moment, despite
all her difficulties and bad feelings, decided to profess and practice
her true undying faith in Jesus.

There are times we try so hard to be good servants of Christ. Some of
us try to eke out time after work to attend a daily Mass to worship
Jesus. Some of us sacrifice money or resources to donate to the poor
in our attempt to follow Jesus' example. Some of us try very hard as
parents to teach our children what Christ preached to his disciples.

It can be tiring and frustrating to the extent that perhaps there are
times we find ourselves complaining. It's during these times we forget
the bottom line of Jesus' teachings which is: as Christians the most
important thing is to remember that Jesus is our Savior and that what
we should sustain most, is our faith in Him.

"Lord Jesus, you are the Resurrection and the Life. Strengthen my faith
and hope in your promises that I may radiate the joy of the gospel to

Have a good day!

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