Wednesday, June 06, 2007
Thursday 9th Week in Ordinary Time
Thursday 9th Week in Ordinary Time - Year I
TOBIT 6:10-11; 7:1, 9-17;8:4-9A
When they had entered Media and were getting close to Ecbatana,
Raphael said to the boy, "Brother Tobiah!" He answered, "Yes, what is
it?" Raphael continued: "Tonight we must stay with Raguel, who is a
relative of yours. He has a daughter named Sarah, When they entered
Ecbatana, Tobiah said, "Brother Azariah, lead me straight to our
kinsman Raguel." So he brought him to the house of Raguel, whom they
found seated by his courtyard gate. They greeted him first. He said to
them, "Greetings to you too, brothers! Good health to you, and
welcome!" When he brought them into his home, Afterward, Raguel
slaughtered a ram from the flock and gave them a cordial reception.
When they had bathed and reclined to eat, Tobiah said to Raphael,
"Brother Azariah, ask Raguel to let me marry my kinswoman Sarah."
Raguel overheard the words; so he said to the boy: "Eat and drink and
be merry tonight, for no man is more entitled to marry my daughter
Sarah than you, brother. Besides, not even I have the right to give
her to anyone but you, because you are my closest relative. But I will
explain the situation to you very frankly. I have given her in
marriage to seven men, all of whom were kinsmen of ours, and all died
on the very night they approached her. But now, son, eat and drink. I
am sure the Lord will look after you both." Tobiah answered, "I will
eat or drink nothing until you set aside what belongs to me." Raguel
said to him: "I will do it. She is yours according to the decree of
the Book of Moses. Your marriage to her has been decided in heaven!
Take your kinswoman; from now on you are her love, and she is your
beloved. She is yours today and ever after. And tonight, son, may the
Lord of heaven prosper you both. May he grant you mercy and peace."
Then Raguel called his daughter Sarah, and she came to him. He took
her by the hand and gave her to Tobiah with the words: "Take her
according to the law. According to the decree written in the Book of
Moses she is your wife. Take her and bring her back safely to your
father. And may the God of heaven grant both of you peace and
prosperity." He then called her mother and told her to bring a scroll,
so that he might draw up a marriage contract stating that he gave
Sarah to Tobiah as his wife according to the decree of the Mosaic law.
Her mother brought the scroll, and he drew up the contract, to which
they affixed their seals. Afterward they began to eat and drink. Later
Raguel called his wife Edna and said, "My love, prepare the other
bedroom and bring the girl there." She went and made the bed in the
room, as she was told, and brought the girl there. After she had cried
over her, she wiped away the tears and said: "Be brave, my daughter.
May the Lord of heaven grant you joy in place of your grief. Courage,
my daughter." Then she left. When the girl's parents left the bedroom
and closed the door behind them, Tobiah arose from bed and said to his
wife, "My love, get up. Let us pray and beg our Lord to have mercy on
us and to grant us deliverance." She got up, and they started to pray
and beg that deliverance might be theirs. He began with these words:
"Blessed are you, O God of our fathers; praised be your name forever
and ever. Let the heavens and all your creation praise you forever.
You made Adam and you gave him his wife Eve to be his help and
support; and from these two the human race descended. You said, 'It is
not good for the man to be alone; let us make him a partner like
himself.' Now, Lord, you know that I take this wife of mine not
because of lust, but for a noble purpose. Call down your mercy on me
and on her, and allow us to live together to a happy old age." They
said together, "Amen, amen," and went to bed for the night. But Raguel
got up and summoned his servants. With him they went out to dig a
One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him, "Which is the first of
all the commandments?" Jesus replied, "The first is this: Hear, O
Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your
God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and
with all your strength. The second is this: You shall love your
neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than
these." The scribe said to him, "Well said, teacher. You are right in
saying, He is One and there is no other than he. And to love him with
all your heart, with all your understanding, with all your strength,
and to love your neighbor as yourself is worth more than all burnt
offerings and sacrifices." And when Jesus saw that he answered with
understanding, he said to him, "You are not far from the Kingdom of
God." And no one dared to ask him any more questions.
When the friendly scribe in today's Gospel approached Jesus and asked
him: "What is the first commandment?" he was seeking the answer to the
troubling question that we must all face and which we usually
formulate this way: "What is the most important thing in life? Jesus
answers that question very clearly and very simply: the most important
thing in life is to love.
If we were asked the same question by a stranger, what would we
answer? We could very well give a nice answer, something which sounds
good and projects a favorable image of ourselves, but which would not
really express our everyday concerns and attitudes. One way to find
out our real priorities is to ask ourselves: what am I thinking about
most of the time? What is it that really worries me and keeps me awake
at night? And we might be surprised at what we come up with.
Perhaps, then, we must begin by an act of humble confession and admit
that our priorities are not really those of Jesus; the love of God and
the love of neighbor. If that is the case, then the first step in
changing our priorities is to make this initial admission. If love is
not the most important thing in our life, then we are indeed still
very far from the kingdom of God. It is high time that we recognize in
what direction we are walking. Love is the soul of Christian life.
That is why it is above worship, cult or liturgy.
Nothing can substitute for love. Where, for instance, parental love
for the child is lacking, not all the material gifts that the parents
can afford the child will help their child to grow up into an adult
who is healthy spiritually, emotionally and physically. The more one
loves, the nearer he approaches the kingdom of God, for God is love.
We pray ...
.. for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the
.. for the healing and speedy recovery of:
- Flory Bolante
- Gigi Dizon
- Eloisa and Charlize Sityar
.. for the personal intentions of Veronica Yap
.. for the strength and guidance of Lawrence Sityar
.. for the eternal repose of the souls of
- Julieta Maceda
- Jose Delfin
Eternal rest grant unto them and may perpetual light shine upon them.
May they and all the souls of the dearly departed rest in peace.
.. for the safe trip and a new beginning for Mrs. Teresita Nunez Choa
.. for spiritual and physical healing of Belinda Javier
.. for enlightenment and guidance of those who will be taking the
Nurses' Board exam on June 11
.. for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- Health and Thanksgiving: Jun S. Rodriguez
- Wedding Anniversary: Cynthia and Eric Gale
- In Memoriam (+): Albert Dy, Sr. (1923 - 2005)
.. 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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