Thursday, September 20, 2012

Joy of Quotes

Take time to enjoy life today – or at least very soon.
For you never know how soon it will be too late.

He gives power to the tired and worn out and strength to the weak.
Isaiah 40:29 TLB

Gospel Reflection

September 20, 2012

Memorial of Saint Andrew Kim Taegŏn, priest and martyr

Saint Paul Chŏng Hasang, martyr, and their companions, martyrs

by Rev. Fr. Agapito "Aga" Tarog (Immaculate Conception Parish, Las Pinas)
Lunch Mass at Megamall, Chapel of the Eucharistic Lord

Reading 1 1 Cor 15:1-11

I am reminding you, brothers and sisters, of the Gospel I preached to you, which you indeed received and in which you also stand. Through it you are also being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. For I handed on to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures; that he was buried; that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures; that he appeared to Cephas, then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at once, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. After that he appeared to James, then to all the Apostles. Last of all, as to one born abnormally, he appeared to me. For I am the least of the Apostles, not fit to be called an Apostle, because I persecuted the Church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me has not been ineffective. Indeed, I have toiled harder than all of them; not I, however, but the grace of God that is with me. Therefore, whether it be I or they, so we preach and so you believed.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 118:1b-2, 16ab-17, 28

R. (1) Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good,
for his mercy endures forever.
Let the house of Israel say,
"His mercy endures forever."
R. Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
"The right hand of the LORD is exalted;
the right hand of the LORD has struck with power."
I shall not die, but live,
and declare the works of the LORD.
R. Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
You are my God, and I give thanks to you;
O my God, I extol you.
R. Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.

Gospel Lk 7:36-50

A certain Pharisee invited Jesus to dine with him, and he entered the Pharisee's house and reclined at table. Now there was a sinful woman in the city who learned that he was at table in the house of the Pharisee. Bringing an alabaster flask of ointment, she stood behind him at his feet weeping and began to bathe his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them, and anointed them with the ointment. When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this he said to himself, "If this man were a prophet,
he would know who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, that she is a sinner." Jesus said to him in reply, "Simon, I have something to say to you." "Tell me, teacher," he said. "Two people were in debt to a certain creditor; one owed five hundred days' wages and the other owed fifty. Since they were unable to repay the debt, he forgave it for both. Which of them will love him more?" Simon said in reply, "The one, I suppose, whose larger debt was forgiven." He said to him, "You have judged rightly." Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon, "Do you see this woman? When I entered your house, you did not give me water for my feet, but she has bathed them with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You did not give me a kiss, but she has not ceased kissing my feet since the time I entered. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she anointed my feet with ointment.
So I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven; hence, she has shown great love. But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little." He said to her, "Your sins are forgiven." The others at table said to themselves, "Who is this who even forgives sins?" But he said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you; go in peace."


Sa panahon ngayon ulan nang ulan at baha. Isipin po natin sa mga kapanuhan ng kasagsagan ng ulan at bagyo, napakarami ang nakalubog sa ating siyudad na lugar at ang iba nga para mailikas sa ibang ibayo, they need to wade through the water. Kalimitan 'yong tubig ay napakalakas ang agos. One time, nakapanood ako ng television ay mayroon doong ilang taong tinatawid. Pero ang tanong ay - sa gitna ng napakalakas na alon, para sila'y makatawid nang maayos ay may kinabit na lubid - malakas ang alon, eh.

Let me ask you a question - Kung kayo 'yong tinatawid, gagawin nyo po bang pa-easy easy lamang ang pagkapit doon sa lubid? Yes or no? No - bakit? Kasi mangangahulugan 'yon ng buhay nyo. Di ho baga - kakapit kayo do'n sa lubid dahil malakas ang agos at kapag hindi kayo kumapit nang husto, maaari kayong anurin, at pag kayo inanod, saan kayo pupulutin - baka pulutin na kayo sa Manila Bay, and you die.

Mga kapatid sa pananampalataya, by that illustration, makikita po natin 'yong sinasabi ni St. Paul in the first reading. The Apostle was trying to remind his Corinthian community of the Word that has been preached to them, through which they were being saved, if they hold fast to the Word that is preached to them. Kung ang tawag natin sa lubid na 'yon pagtawid ng maalon na baha, is called a life line, then the Apostle is simply trying to remind the Corinthians that the life line to God - to salvation - is the Word. At ililigtas daw ang Corinthian community ng Salitang 'yon, if they hold fast to it. Pinagkakapitan nila nang husto 'yong Salita, because it is a life line. Release your grip on the Word, and you die.

Mga kapatid sa pananampalataya, that is what is being told us. The Word is a life line of the Christian. Hold fast to the Word as if to a rope in a strong current of flood, then you will live. Relax your grip on the Word, at aanurin ka ng mundo. And when it happens na anurin tayo ng mundo and we lose that grip, then we die.

But the next question we have to settle is - this Word is not just a simple word. This word is a person. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God, and the Word became flesh, which refers ultimately to the Lord Jesus Christ. The final question we have to settle is - sino ang karaniwang kumakapit sa Panginoong Diyos? Sino? Ang karaniwang kumakapit lamang sa Diyos ay 'yong mga taong nakaramdam na ng matinding pagkaligtas sa isang matinding kapahamakan. One who has been delivered from certain dangers. Kalimitan 'yong mga ganon. Kaya ano ang sabi nitong parabula, 'yong kasaysayan no'ng sinful woman. Sabi ng Panginoon, "Sino kaya sa palagay mo Simon ang magmamahal nang husto? 'Yon bang kokonti ang pinatawad na utang, o 'yong mas malaking pinatawad na utang o kasalanan?" Sabi ng Pariseo, eh di 'yong taong mas maraming kasalanan at pinatawad, ang siyang magmamahal nang husto. At alam naman po natin na kapag ang isang tao ay nagmamahal nang husto, ay hindi pa rin niya basta-basta binibitawan ang kanyang minamahal. Di ba ganoong katindi 'yon. Kapag nagmamahal ang tao, hindi binibitawan ang object ng kanyang pagmamahal.

Now we ask the question ourselves, my dear people of God, as we are challenged by this Word. Number one - The Word is a life line. Jesus is our life line. Point no. 2 - Tayo ba ay kumakapit dito nang kapit tuko sa Salita ng Diyos? At kung tayo ay kumakapit sa Salita ng Diyos, why do we hold fast to the Word? Is it simply because of practicality, is it simply because of a reason of necessity, or is it because of love, because we truly love? Ibang usapan po ang pagkapit sa Diyos by means of practicality or necessity, ibang usapan din po 'yong pagkapit natin sa Diyos dahil iniibig natin ang Diyos. At kung iniibig natin ang Diyos, we cannot afford to lose our grip on that Word, simply because when we lose our grip on the Word, we die.

Saint Andrew Kim Taegŏn, Saint Paul Chŏng Hasang and Companions Martyrs 

Pray for us