Showing posts from April, 2011


2nd Sunday of Easter(A) May 1, 2011
Let us face it ... Only those deep in denial can claim there is no crisis of hope in our times. Tens of thousands died in Northeastern Japan not too long ago, brought about by a triple disaster, two of which were natural and one man-made: the cataclysmic earthquake, the catastrophic tsunami, and the unfortunate nuclear disaster at Fukushima. Just days ago, a no less catastrophic tornado cut a broad swath of destruction and death in southern USA.
The world today, writes Timothy Radcliffe, is crucified by suffering, violence, and poverty. In our local context back home, more than just material poverty characterizes the "contours of hopelessness" that dot the landscape of our societal lives as Filipinos: a dysfunctional government focused more on revenge than on instituting real reforms that made the massive corruption actually go unabated, if not, become worse; a precipitous ongoing slide on the level of education that keeps its young citizens …


Easter Sunday of the Lord's Resurrection (A) April 24, 2011

This is the day that clinched it ... the day that made the story of Jesus worth telling and retelling ... the day that God has made, and the day that made God worth all our while, worth the trouble spending time for, spending time with, and spending all we have and are for.
There are people who have been spending mighty lots of time now in beaches in tropical Philippines, or in cooler climes up on mountain retreats in Tagaytay and Baguio, and elsewhere. There have been countless "devotees" of sorts who, since Wednesday or Thursday, have been flagellating themselves sore to a bloodied pulp, trying to make amends for a year's worth of revelry and sin, and the usual day-to-day existence, for the most part, godless and irreverently indifferent at the most. There have also been thousands who flocked to churches all over the country, including the thousands who did their easter duties of  going to confession and comm…


Palm Sunday (A)

April 17, 2011

Back in the day when I was a very young priest and formator at the College-Seminary, when seminarians used to do a lot of “manualia” (manual jobs), when they were not in class, we had a water buffalo, a beast of burden known as carabao in the Philippines.

That carabao was a little unwieldy and hard-headed. He refused to be tethered. He kept on tugging at the leash that was connected to his nose, until it tore his nose muscles. He wriggled himself free one day, but in exchange, he had a torn and, I imagined, a sore and ugly swollen nose!

That carabao was the exact opposite of what Isaiah in today’s first reading extols. Isaiah speaks of docility, obedience, and humility. He seems to extol powerlessness and apparent inutility and downright weakness. But his last line turns the table on what the world considers as futility and seeming irrelevance. “The Lord God,” he says, “is my help. Therefore, I am not disgraced!”

Everything in today’s liturgy speaks of the sa…


5th Sunday of Lent (A)            April 10, 2011

Life that is more than just life ... new life, to be exact; life that will never end; life that can accrue even from death, whether material or spiritual ... This is the good news of today ... good news that cannot be ignored or made light of!
The whole world smacks of all that is not life nowadays ... even now strife and rebellion, legitimate in many cases, are taking place in many countries all at one and the same time.  Leaders who have been enjoying worldly life and all its perks for decades, simply refuse to give up power, position, perks, and perch.
Reluctant migrants scamper out of Libya, Yemen, Ivory Coast and other countries precisely in search of a life that is unhampered, untrammeled by personal agendas of leaders who, in the first place, are not life enabling, but life disabling.
People are entombed for many reasons, under many forms, and countless guises. Ignorance buries so many of our countrymen, blinded by the propaganda of …


4th Sunday of Lent (A) April 3, 2011

This Sunday is a reality check for all of us. "Night is coming when no one can work." The Lord Himself recognizes it ... the reality of what Christian authors now call the "eclipse of God" in our times and days. I write at a time when the growing realization that the country I was born and grew up in and spent most of life in is fast experiencing the onslaught of the night that the Lord speaks of - the growing specter of the eclipse of God in culture, in politics, in the world of entertainment, and in all aspects of our societal lives.
Nowhere is this clearer as in the heated debacle that repeatedly ensues with regard to the reproductive health bill. Both sides condemn one another of disinformation. Both sides accuse one another of misleading the people. But without reducing this reflection to an apologia of sorts for the Church that I love, I would like to suggest to my readers that the whole issue does not have to do with who is …