Saturday, May 20, 2006
6th Sunday of Easter
May 21, 2006
6th Sunday of Easter - B
ACTS 10:25-26, 34-35, 44-48
When Peter entered, Cornelius met him and, falling at his feet, paid
him homage. Peter, however, raised him up, saying, "Get up. I myself am
also a human being." Then Peter proceeded to speak and said, "In truth,
I see that God shows no partiality. Rather, in every nation whoever
fears him and acts uprightly is acceptable to him." While Peter was
still speaking these things, the Holy Spirit fell upon all who were
listening to the word. The circumcised believers who had accompanied
Peter were astounded that the gift of the Holy Spirit should have been
poured out on the Gentiles also, for they could hear them speaking in
tongues and glorifying God. Then Peter responded, "Can anyone withhold
the water for baptizing these people, who have received the Holy Spirit
even as we have?" He ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus
1 JOHN 4:7-10
Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; everyone who
loves is begotten by God and knows God. Whoever is without love does
not know God, for God is love. In this way the love of God was revealed
to us: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might have life
through him. In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he
loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins.
Jesus said to his disciples: "As the Father loves me, so I also love
you. Remain in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will remain in
my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and remain in his
love. "I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy
might be complete. This is my commandment: love one another as I love
you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for
one's friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I no
longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master
is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything
I have heard from my Father. It was not you who chose me, but I who
chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so
that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. This I
command you: love one another."
Agapé describes God's totally self-giving love for us humans and for
the whole world. It's the amazing love that takes the initiative,
reaching out to forgive and accept the undeserving.
Because of this love, the central message of Scripture is called
"Gospel" - "Good News." Someone has defined the Gospel as the "good
news that God loves us at our worst." God doesn't love us on the
condition that we've cleaned ourselves up and done things worthy of
divine favor. No, God loves us when we were in sin, when we've hit rock
bottom, when there's no way to go but up. We can take comfort in Paul's
words in Romans 5:8: "God proves his love for us in that while we still
were sinners, Christ died for us."
When all is said and done, God's love of agapé boils down to a
question of giving. It's a question of self-giving. It's a question of
forgiving. It's a question of thanksgiving.
We have seen how love is a question of self-giving. It is also a
question of forgiving. Forgiveness has to be part of every love
relationship, precisely because we are human. Being human, we sin
against one another and hurt one another - even members of our own
family. And for that reason, fathers must be ready to forgive sons.
Sons must be ready to forgive fathers. Mothers must be ready to forgive
daughters. Daughters must be ready to forgive mothers. Brothers must be
ready to forgive sisters. Sisters must be ready to forgive brothers.
And friends must be ready to forgive friends. And they must be ready to
do this not seven times, but as Jesus said, "seventy times seven
How often do we pray the "Our Father" at Mass, especially the words,
"Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us." And how
often we say them on Sunday but fail to practice them from Monday to
Saturday even within our own family.
We often forget that Jesus himself said, "If you forgive others their
wrongs, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you do not
forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your wrongs." And so
besides self-giving, love also involves forgiving. This leads us to the
third kind of giving that love involves - thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving is especially important when it comes to our love for God.
The one thing everyone is capable of giving God is thanks. When we have
nothing else to give God, we can still give our thanks. There is no
excuse on earth for not giving thanks to God.
Helen Hayes is one of the first actresses ever to come out of
Hollywood. She recalls the end of World War I. She was only 18 then,
starring in the Broadway play, Dear Brutus.
During a rehearsal one day, someone came running into the theatre,
shouting the news that the war was over. Immediately the entire place
went wild. The cast forgot about the rehearsal and took off to
celebrate. Helen did not join them, however. Instead she headed for St.
Patrick's Cathedral, making her way through the crowds of celebrating
people. She writes:
"I had visions of being the only person in that vast chapel offering
thanks to the Lord. But when I got there the cathedral was so packed I
couldn't get inside. I was forced to offer my prayer on the steps."
That moving story illustrates the kind of giving that love involves -
especially love of God. It makes us ask ourselves about our own love of
God. How filled with thanksgiving is it?
Lord, on this special day of days,
Give us the courage to imitate our mothers. We give you thanks for our
Especially for their living example of what love involves:
Self-giving to others,
Forgiving of those who hurt us,
And Thanksgiving to God. Amen.
We pray ...
- for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the
- Birthday : Allan Alfonso
- for the healing and recovery of Poch Robles.
- for the eternal repose of the soul of Justine Bengzon. Eternal
rest grant unto her and may perpetual light shine upon her. May she
rest in peace.
- for the personal intentions of Veronica Yap.
- for the personal intentions of Jeffrey and Ginbee.
- for the eternal repose of the soul of Laureana Cabansag Rebosa.
Eternal rest grant unto her and may perpetual light shine upon her.
May she and all the souls of the dearly departed rest in peace.
- for the personal intentions of Julezja.
- for the speedy recovery of Cadio.
- for the speedy recovery of Aida.
- for the eternal repose of the soul of Mr. Romulo Lopez. Eternal
rest grant unto him and may perpetual light shine upon him. May he
and all the souls of the dearly departed rest in peace.
- for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- In Memoriam (+): Pe Teng Siu (1890-1983)
- Prayer Intention: Onal Family
- Wedding Anniversary: Agapito & Carmen Tiu
- for the personal intentions of Audie Cabrera.
- for the complete healing of Michael O. Logatoc & Lydia Endozo.
- for the personal intentions of Corie.
- 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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