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In this way, through experience they will be formed adequately, will be encouraged, and will be capable of rendering service to God Vincent de Paul

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Sep 272014
Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time (José Antonio Pagola)

Ahead of us One day Jesus uttered these harsh words against the religious leaders of his people: “Amen, I say to you, tax collectors and prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God before you.”  A few years ago I was able to verify that Jesus’ statement is not an exaggeration. A group of prostitutes from different countries, accompanied by some Oblate Sisters, reflected on Jesus with the help of the book, Jesus: An Historical Approximation.  I am still touched by the power and the attraction [...] → [Read the full text]

Sep 272014
Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Rosalino Reyes Dizon)

If there is any participation in the Spirit, any compassion and mercy (Phil 2, 1) Just like his Father, Jesus does not wish us sinners to die but to turn back to him and live. He is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and rich in kindness and fidelity. Our Lord does not react impetuously to our disobedience; he does not right way confront us and punish us. He knows how to wait. He gives us ample time to repent. He does not repay us [...] → [Read the full text]

Sep 202014
Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time (José Antonio Pagola)

Not rendering powerless God’s goodness Throughout his prophetic journey, Jesus insisted time and again on communicating his experience of God as “a mystery of unfathomable goodness” that breaks through all our calculations.  His message is so revolutionary that even after twenty centuries there are still Christians who do not dare to take it seriously. In order to infect everyone with his experience of this Good God, Jesus compares God’s behavior to that of a lord of a vineyard.  He goes out in person up to [...] → [Read the full text]

Sep 202014
Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Rosalino Reyes Dizon)

Conduct worthy of the Gospel (Phil 1, 27) God wants all human beings to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. Those who really know him and the truth have concern, just like Jesus, for everyone. Jesus is determined to accomplish his project. Time and again he invites to the heavenly kingdom all the people he meets. He does not find tiring or tedious doing repeatedly the same thing. Nor does he appear picky with those who are coming forward, ready [...] → [Read the full text]

Sep 132014
The Exaltation of the Holy Cross (José Antonio Pagola)

Looking at Jesus crucified with faith The feast that we Christians celebrate today is incomprehensible and even absurd to someone who does not understand the meaning of our Christian faith in Jesus crucified.  What sense could celebrating a feast called the “Exaltation of the Cross” have in a society that passionately pursues comfort and maximum well-being? More than one person will wonder how it is still possible today to keep exalting the cross.  Have we not once and for all gotten over this morbid way [...] → [Read the full text]

Sep 132014
The Exaltation of the Holy Cross (Rosalino Reyes Dizon)

God greatly exalted him (Phil 2, 9) No one has greater faith than the one who, feeling totally forsaken and helpless, still commends his spirit into the hands of the Father. Whoever believes in this greatest Believer and catches his faith will be saved. Faith, in part, is the evidence of things not seen. Hence, those who have it see beyond appearances. They are different from us—“ready cash is the only wealth we understand” (St. Teresa of Ávila). Neither are they like those who seemed [...] → [Read the full text]

Sep 062014
Twenty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time (José Antonio Pagola)

He is in our midst Although Jesus’ words that Matthew recorded are of great importance for the life of Christian communities, they rarely attract the attention of commentators and preachers.  This is Jesus’ promise: “Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” Jesus is not thinking of celebrations attended by huge crowds, like those at St. Peter’s Square in Rome.  Though there are only two or three, there he is among them.  It is not [...] → [Read the full text]