February 1 - Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time : Speaking with Authority

January 28th, 2015

 

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First Reading  Deuteronomy 18:15-20
Moses tells the people that God will raise up for them a new prophet.

Responsorial Psalm  Psalm 95:1-2,6-7,7-9
A song of praise to the Lord.

Second Reading  1 Corinthians 7:32-35
Paul expresses his concern that those who are married are more likely to face the distractions of earthly life than those who are celibate.

Gospel Reading
Mark 1:21-28

  Jesus’ teaching always contrasted sharply with that of the scribes. What Jesus taught them that day, as well as the way he      presented and demonstrated his message, simply amazed them. In one word, Jesus taught with authority, the scribes did not.    “They were astounded at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes” (Mark 1:22). What    does it mean to teach with authority? When we compare and contrast the teaching of Jesus with that of the scribes we notice  three distinguishing qualities: The teaching of Jesus is (a) from the heart and not just from the head, (b) focuses on the spirit and  not on the letter of the law, and (c) inspires a positive change of heart in the hearers. There was a transparency about what he  was saying. And most important of all – he backed up his words with deeds. Can we say the same thing with regard to our  words? Do deeds accompany our words? Today we have a glut of words but many of them are rendered worthless by insincerity  or poisoned by falseness. Therefore what is needed is credibility because “example is better than precept”.

January 25 - Third Sunday in ordinary Time : Seek that which lasts

January 22nd, 2015

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First Reading Jonah 3:1-5,10
God spared the people of Nineveh because they heeded the message God sent through Jonah

Responsorial Psalm Psalm 25:4-5,6-7,8-9
The Lord teaches us his ways.

Second Reading 1 Corinthians 7:29-31
Paul warns the Corinthians that they must act differently because the world in its present form is passing away.

Gospel Reading
Mark 1:14-20

It must be noticed that the disciples are about their everyday tasks as fishermen; they are casting their net into the sea, in their boat, mending their nets. But the summons of Jesus shatters all these external signs of their settled life as successful fishermen. They leave what their peer group would have seen as signs of their success: their nets, their boas, their hired servants and their father to follow Jesus as he journeys in response to the will of his Father. Thus the disciples were able to discern what is temporal and what is eternal. Because this world is temporary and the world to come is permanent, and our permanent inheritance depends on how we live now with God’s grace, we are wise to have a detachment from the things of this world. Detachment does not mean that we don’t love our spouses, that the things that hurt us do not really hurt, that the things that make us happy don’t really give us joy, that we don’t really need physical things, and that these things do not have their own value. Detachment does mean that we see all these persons and good things—and the hardships of life—in light of eternity. Marriage, sorrows, joys, material things, and work find their real meaning in the light of Christ. No earthly good—as truly good as these can be—is our final end. No earthly evil—as truly evil as these can be—is the last word either.

January 18 - Second Sunday in the Ordinary Time : Introducing Jesus to others

January 15th, 2015

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First Reading 1 Samuel 3:3b10,19 
The Lord calls Samuel.

Responsorial Psalm Psalm 40:2, 4, 7–8, 8–9, 10
A prayer of commitment to follow the will of the Lord.

Second Reading 1 Corinthians 6:13c–15a,17–20
Paul reminds the Corinthians that their bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit.

Gospel Reading
John 1:35–42

 

 

The Gospel reading presents John the Baptizer sharing his faith with two disciples and with Andrew sharing his faith with his brother Peter. Significantly, John mentions Andrew three times in his Gospel. Each time Andrew is bringing someone to Jesus. Each time Andrew is sharing his faith. If we believe the Gospel is good news, why don’t we share it with others? Or if we believe Jesus is the greatest treasure the heart can possess, why don’t we share our faith with others? Like John and like Andrew let us never hesitant to share our in Jesus with others. 

 

APOSTOLIC JOURNEY OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS TO SRI LANKA

January 9th, 2015

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Monday, January 12, 2015

19:00 – Departure from the Airport of Rome/Fiumicino to Colombo

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

09:00 – Arrival at the Colombo International Airport, Katunayake WELCOME CEREMONY
13:15 – MEETING with the Bishops of SRI LANKA at the Archbishop’s House, Colombo – 08
17:00 – COURTESY VISIT to the President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka at the President’s House.
18:15 – INTERRELIGIOUS MEETING in the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) Colombo.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

08:30 – Celebration of Holy Eucharist and Canonization of Blessed Joseph Vaz in Galle Face Green Colombo
14:00 – Departure to Madhu Shrine
15:30 – MARIAN PRAYER at the Shrine of our Lady of Rosary of Madhu
16:45 – Departure to Colombo

Thursday, January 15, 2015

08:15 – Visit to the Chapel of the “Benedict XVI Cultural Institute” at Bolawalana
08:45 – Farewell ceremony at the Colombo International Airport, Katunayake
09:00 – Departure from Colombo to Manila

 

Official Hymn for Pope Francis Visit to Sri Lanka 2015

January 11- Baptism of the Lord

January 9th, 2015

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First Reading Isaiah 55:1-11
(The first reading from Cycle A, Isaiah 42:1-4,6-7, may also be chosen.)
Isaiah calls upon the people to return to the Lord.

Responsorial Psalm Isaiah 12:2-3,4-6
(
The psalm from Cycle A, Psalm 29:1-4,9-10, may also be chosen.)
A prayer of praise for God's salvation.

Second Reading 1 John 5:1-9
 (The second reading from Cycle A, Acts of the Apostles 10:34-38, may also be chosen.)
The Spirit of Truth testifies on behalf of Jesus, God's Son.

Gospel Reading
Mark 1:7-11

 

Today we celebrate the Lord’s baptism by John in the River Jordan.  Jesus had no need to be baptized, but the first theologians say that in His Baptism, with His body and His divinity he blessed all the waters, so that the waters would have the power to give Baptism. Today is a good day to remind ourselves about the Baptism we have received. As Catholics we believe that God has come to us in Jesus Christ to share His very own life with us. God loves us and wants to share His life with us and become totally a part of how we live, in all that we think, say and do. And how does that happen? As Catholics, we encounter God and receive His life into our lives through sacred signs called ‘Sacraments’. And there are Seven Sacraments. So the sacraments are a sign and instruments of how God shares His very life with us. We experience God’s saving presence in and through the sacraments. That is why the Sacraments are so important to us. That is why the Holy Mass is so important to us. Baptism gives us a new identity as God’s son and daughter. Baptism is an initiation into a way of living, an inauguration into a lifetime adventure in which we try to claim everyday our belovedness in God as we share His very life.

 

 

January 4 - The Feast of the Epiphany: Follow the Star

January 2nd, 2015

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First Reading  Isaiah 60:1-6
Jerusalem shall be a light to all nations.

Responsorial Psalm  Psalm 72:1-2,7-8,10-11,12-13
Every nation on earth shall worship the Lord.

Second Reading  Ephesians 3:2-3a,5-6
Gentiles are coheirs in the promise of Christ.

Gospel Reading
Matthew 2:1-12

 

The Feast of the Epiphany could be understood by the three S. The first S is, to See. The wise men saw the star and they followed. God speaks to us through signs. Are we able to see and understand those sings? God tells us not to see with our physical eyes but to see with our hearts. The second S is Search. The wise men were searching for Christ. Once we have found the star we have to hvae a great desire to put our desire into action and seek after that sign. The last S is Submit or to obey. The wise men did this once they found Jesus and offered to Him the best of everything. All signs finally lead us to worship the Lord. Is there a star out there beckoning you? The star is the good out there to be sought, the truth to be embraced. Even our regrets about our weaknesses and sinfulness which can sometimes stir up our conscience could be that twinkling star. It may be a feeling of anger or guilt, or perhaps a sense of loss. Let that not frighten you. Let it not create clouds to hide it from you. Follow where that star leads and when it stops, go into the house, prostrate yourself and offer your gifts. The Eucharist that we celebrate today can be itself an epiphany, an encounter with that Star, a marvellous revelation of the love of Jesus in Word and Sacrament, for those who believe. May our celebration today be an epiphany that leads us to see God more clearly, love him more dearly, and follow him more nearly.

 

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