Sunday, September 23, 2012

Gospel Reflection

September 23, 2012
Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time
by Rev. Fr. Caloy Reyes
Mass at EDSA Shrine, Our Lady of Peace Quasi-Parish

Reading 1 Wis 2:12, 17-20

The wicked say: Let us beset the just one, because he is obnoxious to us; he sets himself against our doings, reproaches us for transgressions of the law and charges us with violations of our training. Let us see whether his words be true; let us find out what will happen to him. For if the just one be the son of God, God will defend him and deliver him from the hand of his foes. With revilement and torture let us put the just one to the test that we may have proof of his gentleness and try his patience. Let us condemn him to a shameful death; for according to his own words, God will take care of him.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 54:3-4, 5, 6 and 8

R. (6b) The Lord upholds my life.
O God, by your name save me,
and by your might defend my cause.
O God, hear my prayer;
hearken to the words of my mouth.
R. The Lord upholds my life.
For the haughty men have risen up against me,
the ruthless seek my life;
they set not God before their eyes.
R. The Lord upholds my life.
Behold, God is my helper;
the Lord sustains my life.
Freely will I offer you sacrifice;
I will praise your name, O LORD, for its goodness.
R. The Lord upholds my life.

Reading 2 Jas 3:16-4:3

Where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every foul practice. But the wisdom from above is first of all pure, then peaceable, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without inconstancy or insincerity. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace for those who cultivate peace.

Where do the wars and where do the conflicts among you come from? Is it not from your passions that make war within your members? You covet but do not possess. You kill and envy but you cannot obtain; you fight and wage war. You do not possess because you do not ask. You ask but do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.

Gospel Mk 9:30-37

Jesus and his disciples left from there and began a journey through Galilee, but he did not wish anyone to know about it. He was teaching his disciples and telling them, "The Son of Man is to be handed over to men and they will kill him, and three days after his death the Son of Man will rise." But they did not understand the saying, and they were afraid to question him.

They came to Capernaum and, once inside the house, he began to ask them, "What were you arguing about on the way?" But they remained silent. They had been discussing among themselves on the way who was the greatest. Then he sat down, called the Twelve, and said to them, "If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all and the servant of all." Taking a child, he placed it in the their midst, and putting his arms around it, he said to them, "Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me; and whoever receives me, receives not me but the One who sent me."


The Gospel today talks about the places in the Kingdom of God. It also answers the question - who can enter the Kingdom of God? Do you wish to enter the Kingdom of God? Do you want to be part of the Kingdom of God? Do you know the secret?
Let us take a look now at the reading. The Disciples went on a journey to Capernaum and they were arguing among themselves on who was the greatest among them. We were trained even at infancy to be the best, isn't that correct? At a certain level, this training then becomes almost a part of us - to be the best. That is why now we have the "dog-eat-dog" mentality - that is, taking advantage of our brothers, so that we can be exalted. Sadly, this is what others do, day in and day out. And we see this from practically all levels in the society - in politics, our schools, offices, our families, our relationships. It happens even in our Church - it happened among the Disciples even when Jesus was around.

So in order to emphasize something, what did Jesus do? He asked the Disciples to settle down, and said to them, "The first should be the last of all, and the servant of all." He took a child, placed it in their midst, and put His arms around it, and said to them, "Whoever receives one child such as this in My name, receives Me. And whoever receives Me, receives not Me, but the One who sent Me." In other words, Jesus said that if we will not convert and become like little children, we will not enter the Kingdom of God.

What is it about a child that the Kingdom of God belongs to it? As a parent, you can say that the best time you had with your child, was when they were infants. Why is it the best time? It's the time when they love you, obey you, and depend on you. It is their relationship with you as infants that made it special. And that is what the God the Father wants - because the Father really wants to take care of you.

Our daily lives become full of challenges, that we are sometimes weighed down. But at the end of the day, we are a child of God. May nahihingahan ako ng loob. Mayroon akong Ama. "Lord, hindi ko na kaya ito, nahihirapan na po ako." And I know that I will always be a child in my Father's arms. We should read Psalm 131. In the arms of my Father, I feel safe and secure.

Don't you want to be like a child? Di ka ba napapagod? Would you like to be a child in the arms of the Father? Sometimes, the Father is also like a mother. As a Father, He will not forget you, like a mother cannot forget a child in her womb. The best love that can approximate the love of God for us, is the love of a mother. Yet, even if a mother forgets the child in her womb, God will never forget us. God loves like us like no other. We should rest in the arms of our Father, as content as a child that has been weaned.

In our daily life, we can be like a child. Defenseless, totally dependent on God, spiritually growing with God. We must be like little children. We must have this special relationship with the Father. And I tell you that the Father loves you. Do not be afraid, and be like Jesus Christ, who is absolute in gentleness and tenderness. The gentleness of God is absolute and once He takes care of you, that's it, you are like an infant, and you will be alright.

Today is also the Feast Day of St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina

St. Padre Pio – Pray for us

You may also want to see: A Holy Life - St. Padre Pio
                                       Gospel Reflection - September 23 by Rev. Fr. Allan Dialogo

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