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SEPTEMBER 26, 2005

This word of the LORD of hosts came: Thus says the LORD of hosts: I
am intensely jealous for Zion, stirred to jealous wrath for her. Thus
says the LORD: I will return to Zion, and I will dwell within
Jerusalem; Jerusalem shall be called the faithful city, and the
mountain of the LORD of hosts, the holy mountain. Thus says the LORD
of hosts: Old men and old women, each with staff in hand because of old
age, shall again sit in the streets of Jerusalem. The city shall be
filled with boys and girls playing in its streets. Thus says the LORD
of hosts: Even if this should seem impossible in the eyes of the
remnant of this people, shall it in those days be impossible in my eyes
also, says the LORD of hosts? Thus says the LORD of hosts: Lo, I will
rescue my people from the land of the
rising sun, and from the land of the setting sun. I will bring them
back to dwell within Jerusalem. They shall be my people, and I will be
their God, with faithfulness and justice.

LUKE 9:46-50
An argument arose among the disciples about which of them was the
greatest. Jesus realized the intention of their hearts and took a
child and placed it by his side and said to them, "Whoever receives
this child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me receives the
one who sent me. For the one who is least among all of you is the one
who is the greatest." Then John said in reply, "Master, we saw
someone casting out demons in your name and we tried to prevent him
because he does not follow in our company." Jesus said to him, "Do not
prevent him, for whoever is not against you is for you."

A sad reflection on the apostles is that on more than one occasion
Jesus had to rebuke them for arguing about who was the greatest among
them. However, it helps us to see ourselves in them, realizing that the
first apostles had the same tendencies and weaknesses as each one of
us. Who among us does not want to be great? Actually, God is calling us
to be great. He does not want mediocre Christians or half-hearted
apostles. Jesus calls us to channel and purify our desire for greatness
so that our primary concern is not our own good but God's glory and the
good of our brothers and sisters. It would be good to pause for a while
today to ask ourselves where our desire for greatness lies.

The medicine that Jesus offers to his apostles and to us in order to
help them and us to grow in humility is the example of a child. In the
gospels, Jesus gives ongoing doses of medicine. Jesus said, "Let the
little children come to me." He also warned that no one could enter the
kingdom of heaven unless they became like a little child. In this
passage he uses a child in order to illustrate that the greatest among
them is not the one who is served by the rest. The greatest among them
is not the one who stands out for his many honors, great deeds and
successes in life. No, the greatest among them is the one who serves
the rest. Even more shocking, the
greatest among them is the one who serves the most insignificant ones,
those from whom we can expect no return. We can ask ourselves: "When
was the last time we served someone with absolutely no desire for
recognition, but simply for the glory of God and the good of the one we
were was serving? When did we give and not count the cost?"

Immediately after reprimanding his apostles for their ambition,
teaching them that true greatness is humble service, Jesus again finds
traces of that same lack of humility in the beloved apostle, St. John.
Perhaps John accepted the lesson that the apostles should not compete
among themselves as to who should be the greatest. Nevertheless, it
would seem that he still thought that the Twelve should be given a
special place of honor since he asks Jesus if they should stop those
from healing, who "were not of their company". The gentle humility of
Jesus surfaces in his response. He does not rebuke John again, but
patiently teaches him that whoever is not against them is on their
side. Jesus teaches us that humility must be the foundation of our work
for his kingdom.

As we reflect on this gospel reading, we should pray for the gift of
humility so that we might be a more docile instrument in God's hands.
Jesus' patience and personal attention throughout the day is a sublime
reality that frequently escapes our notice.

And so, we should ask Jesus to make us more aware of his presence in
our daily lives. Let us make the effort to follow Jesus in selfless
service to our brothers and sisters. May we serve them out of the
purest of love, for God's glory and not our own.

"Lord, your grace knows no bounds. You give freely to the humble of
heart and you grant us freedom to love and serve others selflessly. May
my love for you express itself in an eagerness to do good for others."

We pray ...
- for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the
- for the personal intentions of Grace.
- for the speedy recovery of Charleen.
- for the speedy recovery of Cherie Gillian J. Wee
- for the enlightenment and special intentions of Vincent Gregory L. Sy
- for the enlightenment and spiritual guidance of J.C.
- for the good health of Elsa, Paolo & Renie
- for the eternal repose of the souls of Cristina, Rosvie & Aljohn.
Eternal rest grant unto them and may perpetual light shine upon them.
May they rest in peace.
- for the eternal repose of the soul of Elizabeth O. Ting. Eternal rest
grant unto her and may perpetual light shine upon her. May she rest in
- for the eternal repose of the soul of Consuelo Venturina. Eternal
rest grant unto her and may perpetual light shine upon her. May she
rest in peace.
- for the personal intentions of Sy.
- for the good health of Papa Fabio, Mama Terry, Papa Raul, Mama Baby
and Fredo Oljol.
- for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- Wedding Anniversary: Dr. & Mrs. Sonny Bautista
- Wedding Anniversary: Dra. Rosalind Sia & Dr. John Lim
- Wedding Anniversary: Louie & Lourdes Ortiga
- 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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