Wednesday, November 01, 2017
WEDNESDAY, ALL SAINTS
November 1, 2017 – WEDNESDAY, ALL SAINTS
Rev 7: 2 - 4, 9 -14 / 1 Jn 1:1 - 3 / Mt 5: 1 - 12a
Originating from the 4th century Eastern Feast of All Martyrs, Pope Gregory IV established this Feast of All Saints in the Roman Church in 835. Originally celebrated on Easter Friday, it was moved to 13 May and, in the ninth century, to 01 November where it countered the Celtic pagan feast of the Druids.
FROM THE 2ND READING: 1 Jn 1:1- 2
This is what has been from the beginning, and what we have heard and have seen with our own eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, I mean the Word who is Life. The Life made itself known, we have seen the Eternal Life and we bear witness, and we are telling you of it. It was with the Father and made himself known to us.
GOSPEL READING: Mt 5: 1 - 12a
Jesus said, "Fortunate are those who have the spirit of the poor, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Fortunate are those who mourn, they shall be comforted. Fortunate are the gentle, they shall possess the land. Fortunate are those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they shall be satisfied.
"Fortunate are the merciful, for they shall find mercy. Fortunate are those with a pure heart, for they shall see God. Fortunate are those who work for peace, they shall be called children of God."
A friend shared with me that he lost his job as head of sales. He had thought all along that he had been doing well. After all his division had brought in the highest sales in many years. His supervisor gave him feedback that his team-mates thought that he was too strict, that everything was "de numero." He could not believe what he heard; he thought he had worked well with his team.
He went into depression and self-doubt. His faith in God was terribly shaken. He went for months in darkness until he read about Thomas Merton's "false self."
A commentator described it this way, "Each one of us is shadowed ... by an illusory person, [a] false self. That false self is the illusion of my separate self as absolute, as a center of the universe, the hub of the bicycle wheel. I rationalize that this egocentric self, this self of mine, that I project to others, is the fundamental reality of life to which everything else in the universe is ordered. So I can spend a whole life up on the surface, covering myself with pleasure and possessions and bodily beauty and strength to make myself visible and important to myself and my world. But under all these things with which I am clothed I am hallow."
My friend recognized this truth! He slowly and painfully admitted the existence of this illusory self, his false self, that what he thought about himself was really "ego" and egocentric and felt deep shame. It took time to accept his nothingness before God and that everything came from the gracious hand of God. He slowly came to understand that this is what being poor in spirit meant.
Just about the same time, he was made to realize that he had not listened well. He thought that he was being terminated. He was not! Actually he was being given a new position, that of head of a new division, with freedom to choose his own team mates!
Holiness or being a saint does not mean being perfect or without weakness and with no shadows. Being a saint means humility, humbly accepting both the lights and shadows of my life, that I am really nothing except through God's loving kindness.
As a spiritual writer R. Rohr says, the work of facing and accepting my shadows in all humility is a lifetime work- shadow boxing. Persons who are poor in spirit are saints. We celebrate them today, both living and those who are now with God.
All you saints and blessed of God, intercede and pray for us.
WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER INTENTIONS:
FR. ANTONIO S. SAMSON SJ
GLORIA M. PI LARES
LOUCIANA NGO SY
IN MEMORIAM (†)
DEPARTED FRIENDS, RELATIVES OF JAMES & GLORIA YU
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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