Saturday, December 17, 2011



DECEMBER 18, 2011

2 Sm 7:1-5, 8-11, 16 / Ps 89:2-3, 4-5, 27, 29 / Rom 16:25-27 / Lk

2 SAMUEL 7:1–5, 8B–12, 14, 16
When David, the king, had set tled in his palace and Yahweh had rid
him of all his surrounding enemies, he said to Nathan the prophet,
"Look, I live in a house of cedar but the ark of God is housed in a
tent." Nathan replied, "Do as it seems fit to you for Yahweh is with
you." But that very night, Yahweh's word came to Nathan, "Go and tell
my servant David, this is what Yahweh says: Are you able to build a
house for me to live in? "Now you will tell my servant David, this is
what Yahweh of hosts says: I took you from the pasture, from tending
the sheep, to make you commander of my people Israel. I have been with
you wherever you went, cutting down all your enemies before you. Now I
will make your name great as the name of the great ones on earth. I
will provide a place for my people Israel and plant them that they may
live there in peace. They shall no longer be harassed, nor shall
wicked men oppress them as before. From the time when I appointed
judges over my people Israel it is only to you that I have given rest
from all your enemies. Yahweh also tells you that he will build you a
house. When the time comes for you to rest with your ancestors, I will
raise up your son after you, the one born of you and I will make his
reign secure. I will be a father to him and he shall be my son. If he
does wrong, I will punish him with the rod, as men do. Your house and
your reign shall last forever before me, and your throne shall be
forever firm."

ROMANS 16:25–27
Glory to him who is able to give you strength, according to the Good
News I proclaim, announcing Christ Jesus. Now is revealed the
mysterious plan kept hidden for long ages in the past. By the will of
the eternal God it is brought to light, through the prophetic books,
and all nations shall believe the faith proclaimed to them. Glory to
God, who alone is wise, through Christ Jesus, forever! Amen.

LUKE 1:26-38
In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of
Galilee called Nazareth. He was sent to a young virgin who was
betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the family of David; and the
virgin's name was Mary. The angel came to her and said, "Rejoice, full
of grace, the Lord is with you." Mary was troubled at these words,
wondering what this greeting could mean. But the angel said, "Do not
fear, Mary, for God has looked kindly on you. You shall conceive and
bear a son and you shall call him Jesus. He will be great and shall
rightly be called Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the
kingdom of David, his ancestor; he will rule over the people of Jacob
forever and his reign shall have no end." Then Mary said to the angel,
"How can this be if I am a virgin?" And the angel said to her, "The
Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will
overshadow you; therefore, the holy child to be born shall be called
Son of God. Even your relative Elizabeth is expecting a son in her old
age, although she was unable to have a child, and she is now in her
six th month. With God nothing is impossible." Then Mary said, "I am
the handmaid of the Lord, let it be done to me as you have said." And
the angel left her.

Let us focus on two sentences in today's readings. The first sentence
is the angel's words to Mary, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you and
the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore, the holy
child to be born shall be called Son of God." The important word in
that sentence is "overshadow." This word is rarely used in the Bible.
One such instance is found in the Book of Exodus. There it describes a
mysterious cloud that "overshadowed" the tent in which Israel kept the
Ark of the Covenant. Exodus 40:34 says that as soon as the cloud
overshadowed the tent, "the Lord's presence fills it." Luke's choice
of the rare word "overshadow" is not accidental. It is symbolic. Luke
compares Mary's womb in which Jesus will be housed to the ark in which
the tablets of the Ten Commandment were housed. Thus when God's power
overshadows Mary, the "Lord's presence fills her." But the Lord's
presence that fills Mary is infinitely richer than the Lord's presence
that fills the tent. The Lord's presence in Mary is the flesh-and-
blood presence of Jesus.

God is present to us in different ways. God is present to us in
creation, in the words of Scripture and in Jesus. This brings us back
to the other sentence that we should focus on. "Even your relative
Elizabeth is expecting a son in her old age, although she was unable
to have a child, and she is now in her sixth month. With God nothing
is impossible." The important words in this sentence are the words
"with God nothing is impossible." Before God's power overshadowed
Mary, the world had no hope. Sin and violence were everywhere. Before
God's power overshadowed Elizabeth, she had no hope of giving birth to
a son. She was old and past her productive years. And, finally, before
God's power overshadowed Mary, the human race had no hope of
salvation. It was held in slavery by Satan. The power of God that
overshadowed Mary changed all that.

What does this mean for us today? It means this: Our world, our
family, our lives may be a mess, but there is hope. There is hope
because God's power in the person of Jesus had entered our world. This
is what we are preparing to celebrate in these days before Christmas.
Furthermore, if Jesus in our midst is to bear fruit, like Mary
carrying the Christ-Child who spontaneously hurries to the hill
country to help her cousin Elizabeth, so we, having Christ with us,
must be ready to spread the Good News of his presence to people around
us, especially to the people in need.

We have many opportunities during this Christmas season. However,
giving help to others should not be limited only to Christmas. We
should make a conscious effort to help others throughout the year.
This can be the sign of a Christian, that God's power filled and
overshadowed us, and gave us the grace to spread the good news of hope
and love to others.

We pray …
… for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the
… for the speedy recovery and healing of
- Chief Samrose Anyaugo
- Patricia White
- Shonee Mendoza
- Mitchell, Brian, Michael G, Kristen, Maria, Delores, Linda O, Mary
Ann, Rudy, Frank
… for the personal intentions of
- Dr. Ugo Anyaugo, Mr. Ogechi Anyaugo, Barr Obinna Okoronkwo, Barr Mrs
Barbs Adaugo Okoronkwo, Mr .Ifeanyi Anyaugo, Mr Chuboy Anyaugo,
Cordelia Anyaugo
- Pam and Rita, Eugene R and Dana
… for the successful result of the BAR examinees of Ateneo Law School
Batch 2011
… for the eternal repose of the souls of
- Rhonda White
- Domingo Tomacruz Bautista
Eternal rest grant unto them and may perpetual light shine upon them.
May they and all the dearly departed rest in peace.
… for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- Birthday: Makairog R. Reyes, SJ
- Birthday: Mel San Diego
- Birthday: Dr. Cheli Banta
- Wedding Anniversary: Glenn & Marisa Espino
- Wedding Anniversary: Zenaida & Alexander See Co.
- Wedding Anniversary: Benito & Alice Cua
- Wedding Anniversary: Robin & Jackie Tong
- Prayer Intention: Vicky & Michael Tan Falcon & Family
… 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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