Monday, October 21, 2013

Gospel Reflection

October 21, 2013
Monday – Year of Faith – Ordinary Time
by Rev. Fr. Carmelo Esteban, Monfort Missionaries
5:30PM Mass, Mary, Queen of Peace Shrine (Our Lady of Peace Quasi Parish/EDSA Shrine)

Reading 1 Rom 4:20-25

Brothers and sisters: Abraham did not doubt God’s promise in unbelief; rather, he was empowered by faith and gave glory to God and was fully convinced that what God had promised he was also able to do. That is why it was credited to him as righteousness. But it was not for him alone that it was written that it was credited to him; it was also for us, to whom it will be credited, who believe in the one who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was handed over for our transgressions and was raised for our justification.

Responsorial Psalm Lk 1:69-70, 71-72, 73-75

R. (see 68) Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; he has come to his people.
He has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty savior,
born of the house of his servant David.
R. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; he has come to his people.
Through his holy prophets he promised of old
that he would save us from our enemies,
from the hands of all who hate us.
He promised to show mercy to our fathers
and to remember his holy covenant.
R. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; he has come to his people.
This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham:
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear,
holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life.
R. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; he has come to his people.

Gospel Lk 12:13-21

Someone in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, tell my brother to share the inheritance with me.” He replied to him, “Friend, who appointed me as your judge and arbitrator?” Then he said to the crowd, “Take care to guard against all greed, for though one may be rich, one’s life does not consist of possessions.”

Then he told them a parable. “There was a rich man whose land produced a bountiful harvest. He asked himself, ‘What shall I do, for I do not have space to store my harvest?’ And he said, ‘This is what I shall do: I shall tear down my barns and build larger ones. There I shall store all my grain and other goods and I shall say to myself, “Now as for you, you have so many good things stored up for many years, rest, eat, drink, be merry!”’ But God said to him, ‘You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you; and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?’ Thus will it be for the one who stores up treasure for himself but is not rich in what matters to God.”


You know, I always say that when we hear mass, we can see the difference of the mass compared to other church activities. In the mass, we always hear the Good News, ang Mabuting Balita. Pero alam n'yo, madaling ikalat ang hindi mabuti. Pero pag good news, ang hirap ikalat. Kaya sinasabi ko sa mga nagsisimba, pag-uwi ninyo sa inyong mga bahay, tanungin ninyo kung ano'ng good news ang nakuha ninyo sa misa.

Ang Gospel natin today ay paulit-ulit n'yo nang narinig. Ito ay walang paliguy-ligoy at malinaw ang gustong sabihin ni Hesus. Huwag tayong maging sakim. Kasi 'yan po ang trend ngayon sa society. Kailangan kang maging sakim, kasi pag hindi ka sakim, hindi ka 'in'. (laughs) And the more you have, mas ok. But Jesus is teaching us the reverse. We should not be selfish. We need to learn how to give sincerely, and be generous.

Even if we do not see God, He is always involved in everything we do, every day in our lives. And the Lord will not forsake us. We are all aware that a major earthquake hit Bohol last week. But we can see how resilient and how strong the Filipino's faith is. Even if most of the churches in Bohol have collapsed, the Filipinos continue to be steadfast in their faith. Don't forget - nauna ang pagiging Kristiyano natin, kaysa sa pagtayo ng mga simbahan. Faith is a gift from God, at hindi 'yan babawiin ng Diyos sa atin. At pag ang Diyos ang nagbigay, bigay-todo. Sa atin na 'yon, freely given by Him, with no strings attached. And the Gospel is telling us that however small faith is, it is effective, therefore, we have to use it.

Three days ago, I went buy food in a fastfood restaurant. And I saw three high school students from a very famous Catholic school in Quezon City. Magkasunod lang kami sa pila. And when these students got their food, sa sobrang gutom siguro nila, I did not see them pray before eating. I know they pray a lot in school. Pero bakit sa fastfood, hindi sila nagdarasal? At tsaka bihira akong makakita ng mga taong nagdarasal sa restaurant. Jackpot pa kung makakita ako ng isa, at kung makakita man ako, parang may arthritis. (laughs) Parang hirap na hirap mag-sign of the cross, oo. Hindi ko alam kung nahihiya, o hindi makita ang koneksiyon.

Then one time, I was in the airport, waiting to board. And when I am alone, I look for a place where I can pray my rosary. Gusto ko 'yong lugar na wala akong makikita, so jackpot nakakita ako ng ganoong lugar, where I can see the other planes taking off and landing, so tuwang tuwa ako. Pero kauupo ko pa lang, may umupo doon sa harap ko. Sabi ko, sa dami ba naman ng mauupuan, doon pa siya umupo sa harapan ko. (laughs) Pagkatapos, itong mamang ito, pagkaupo niya, bigla siyang naglatag ng mantle. Akala ko magpi-picnic kami. (laughs) Pero ang mama ay biglang lumuhod at nagdasal. Wala akong naintindihan sa kanyang dasal, maliban sa isang salita - Allah. Wow, very bold and very courageous ang mama, in professing his faith. In a country where Christianity is dominant, there is a Muslim praying, and it is very good witnessing. Pero ang karamihan sa atin, ano? Very compartmentalized ang faith.

Let us pray in this mass that we may use our faith and make it grow. At gamitin natin ang pananampalatayang ito, upang tayo ay huwag maging sakim.