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Showing posts from November, 2011

THIRST FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS, NOT FOR BLOOD!

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2nd Sunday of Advent(B) December 4, 2011
Words of comfort open today’s liturgy: “Speak to the heart of Jerusalem!” – so says Isaiah. Addressing the seat of thought and wisdom, which is the “heart,” rather than the head, Isaiah reassures them of two things: one, all their debts have been paid for fully, and second, their suffering has come to an end!

I am sure everyone can see and “feel” the impact of such a great news, if one places himself/herself in the shoes of a people thrown into bitter exile, not just once in their history. I am sure, too, how relieved one can be when, after undeservedly suffering so much in silence, one is finally vindicated and declared free from the burden of guilt or accusation. We all experience this every time we get reconciled to the Lord so many times. We all feel relieved after a well-spent time on retreat, and done reparation for our own personal sins. We feel we are granted a fresh lease on life and everything good associated with it. We feel energized t…

MOUND OF MUD; HEAP OF HOPE!

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1st Sunday of Advent (B) November 27, 2011

A brand-new year is starting today in Church! A wisp of new wind blows towards a new direction, a fresh start, a renewed effort, at becoming what we are already on the way to being.
We Christians know how to wait. We have been waiting, like the Israelites of old did. We are still actively waiting. In words borrowed from T.S. Eliot, we may sit still, but we are in point of fact, still moving … moving towards the fulfillment of what we have already started, though not yet fully and totally achieved.
We are a people in waiting. We, too, are a people in motion. We are a people in exile, like the Israelites once, or twice, were, living in a foreign land, subjected to foreign powers, humbled beyond imagination, by potentates bigger than us, bigger than the world, bigger than life itself! But we are also a people on the move. Like the Biblical people of old, though crushed, we are not defeated.
I have survived 13 Philippine mountains. Once I was on my wa…

KING & KINGDOM; CHRIST & HIS CROSS; LEADERS & FOLLOWERS

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SOLEMNITY OF CHRIST, THE KING (A)
November 20, 2011

Politics all over the world seems to be a jumbled mess. With high profile officials literally being forced to resign, or dictators being, booted out of power, if not murdered in cold blood, potential candidates whose dirty past is slowly but surely being ferreted out for the whole world to see, and reigning presidents and national leaders being taken to task for promises unkept, and the whole economic scenario spiraling down beyond control, there is only conclusion we all can reasonably come up with …
The world is in dire straits as far as leadership is concerned. Everywhere, there seems to be a crisis in leadership. Presidents and Prime Ministers; dictators and despots all running the risk of being toppled down from their ivory towers and thrones, in palaces and principalities that they have occupied far too long; Kings and Queens who are all aging and frantically looking for worthy successors; with former presidents being charged for …

OF DAY AND LIGHT, NOT OF DARKNESS AND NIGHT!

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33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) November 13, 2011

Today’s liturgy speaks as much of simple things as of seemingly insignificant matters. The first reading talks about the simplicity of a worthy wife, described as a “value beyond pearls.” The second reading talks about the deep, yet humble significance of the “times and seasons,” events in our everyday experience that we tend to take for granted. It also speaks about such mundane matters as day and night, darkness and light … again, realities that we hardly take notice of.
The Gospel makes much too, of what people in Jesus’ times most likely took for granted – the reality of servants who often would be left alone to fend for themselves, while their masters went away on long journeys. But more than just that, it speaks about something so simple and commonplace as the value of accountability, the good practice of stewardship, along with the virtue of responsibility.
But there are values and there are values … For their seeming simplicity an…

FIND WISDOM … LIVE FROM THE HEART, NOT FROM THE MIND!

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32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) November 6, 2011

I am still reeling from the startling impression given me by the words of St. Judith Zoebelein to Dr. Moynihan: “Find wisdom … Live from your heart, not just from your mind.”
It was, to say the least, a jolting reminder for one who, as teacher and educator, may have a reputation of living a little more from the “mind” side.
Wisdom … this is something we all hanker for and desire above everything else. In the morning of everyone’s life, we all look for learning, information, credentials, titles, and everything that enriches our resume. I am sure those who are younger than me will find this true. But I am sure those of you who are my contemporaries (or older) will find this more wise than true.
Many years ago, as a young freshman in college, I was touched by a line from Boris Pasternak’s novel “Dr. Zhivago.” “Man is born to live, not to prepare for life,” he wrote. Too bad so many of us forget about getting a life, and focus all our efforts a…