What I am referring to is the move in some churches towards changing some of the teachings and doctrines to make them palatable to the so called special interest groups. This move towards political correctness (ie. from referring to God in the neutral gender to outright calling him in the feminine gender) or quoting scripture or explaining passages in scripture to justify specific lifestyles and actions (ie. homosexuality, same sex marriages, adultery, fornication, abortion and euthanasia) is an outright insult to the Lord.
When you have
lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am; And that I do
nothing of myself; what the Father has taught me is what I preach;
he who sent me is with me and has not left me to myself, for I always
do what pleases him. John
For Catholics, we honour people who lived their lives in love of the Lord. We call these people Saints because by their lives, they undoubtedly mirror their love for God. However, this practise has led us to lose sight of the doctrine that all believers are saints.
The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified... I am troubled now. Yet what should I say? Father, save me from this hour? But it was for this purpose that I came to this hour. Father, glorify your name."
I was praying this lunch time and I do not know why but I was very touched with the story of the sinful woman who anointed Jesus feet (Luke 7). I do not know why but as I read the story, I was so touched that I shed a few tears.
The title of Mary as the Mother of God was given during the council of Ephesus in the 4th century. At that time, heretics were claiming that the divinity of Christ is separated from his humanity. But the Church fathers met in Ephesus and dealt with the heresy. The Council proclaimed that Jesus is both God and man-that his humanity and divinity are so intertwined that these cannot be separated. That is why we proclaim that Jesus was "begotten not made" and that Jesus is "true God and true man."
Produce fruit in keeping with repentance....The man who has two tunics should share with him who has none, and the one who has food should do the same....Don collect any more than you are required to.... Don extort money and don accuse people falsely -- be content with your pay.
How do we pray? Jesus taught us how to pray. He gave us a pattern of prayer in the Lords prayer.
"Our Father in Heaven holy be your name your kingdom come your will be done on earth as in heaven Give us this day our daily bread Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil for yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever, Amen"
When he arrived at the house of Jairus, he did not let anyone go in with him except Peter, John and James, and the childs father and mother. Meanwhile, all the people were wailing and mourning for her. "Stop wailing," Jesus said. "She is not dead but asleep." They laughed at him, knowing that she was dead. But he took her by the hand and said, "My child, get up!" Her spirit returned, and at once she stood up.
As I was reading Matthew 1, I came across the verse -
Immanuel - God with us.
This got me to try to look at what this really means. It is Christmas time and this is the season when most of us feel good. Yet if we look at the story of Jesus, Mary and Joseph - for them the first Christmas and even the succeeding ones were saddled with difficulties.
Jesus came to Simon Peter, who said to him, "Lord, are you going to wash my feet?" Jesus answered, "At the moment you do not know what I am doing, but later you will understand." "Never!" said Peter "You shall never wash my feet." Jesus replied, "If I do not wash you, you can have nothing in common with me". "Then Lord," said Simon Peter, "not only my feet, but my hands and my head as well!" Jesus said, "No one who has taken a bath needs washing, he is clean all over."
For the past few days, I have been reading the first letter of Peter. The following is my reflection on this epistle. This letter was written by Peter the leader of the apostles to Christians in the Roman world. Christians are called by God according to his plan. Because of his great mercy he gave us a dynamic hope by giving us himself as our inheritance.
I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength.
This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel says: "In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength..." The Lord longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him! O people of Zion, who live in Jerusalem, you will weep no more. How gracious he will be when you cry for help! As soon as he hears, he will answer you."
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope. Because of the LORDs great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never end. They are new every dawn; abundant is your faithfulness. I say to myself, "The LORD is my inheritance; therefore I will wait for him." The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who follows him; it is good to hope and be still for the salvation of the LORD.
In my younger years, I once dabbled in fortune telling. I read books on astrology and knew how to plot and interpret the planets on a chart. I had a deck of tarot cards and practiced it. The more I practiced them, the more accurate these become. I am telling you that these things do work. That is right, these things do work and they are real. But are these practices pleasing to the Lord?
Then Jesus went from that place and withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. And behold, a Canaanite woman of that district came and called out, "Have pity on me, Lord, Son of David! My daughter is tormented by a demon." But he did not say a word in answer to her. His disciples came and asked him, "Send her away, for she keeps calling out after us." He said in reply, "I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." But the woman came and did him homage, saying, "Lord, help me." He said in reply, "It is not right to take the food of said in reply, "It is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs." She said, "Please, Lord, fpr even the dogs eat the scraps that fall from the table of their masters." Then Jesus said to her in reply, "O woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish." And her daughter was healed from that hour."
When God created the heavens and the earth, he first created light. Then there was evening and there was morning, the first day. Then God spoke and the waters separated to become the sky and the seas. Then there was evening and there was morning, the second day. Then God spoke and land appeared. He also created vegetation and plants. Then there was evening and there was morning, the third day. Then God spoke and he created lights in the sky to mark seasons, days and years. The bigger light that ruled the day was called the sun and the smaller one that ruled the night was called moon.
What the sower is sowing is the word. Those on the edge of the path where the word is sown are people who have no sooner heard it than Satan comes and carries away the word that was sown in them. Similarly, those who receive the seed on patches of rock are people who, when first they hear the word, welcome it at once with joy. But they have no root in them, they do not last; should some trial come, or some persecution on account of the word, they fall away at once. Then there are others who receive the seed in thorns. These have heard the word, but the worries of the world, the lure of riches and all the other passions come in to choke the word and so it produces nothing. And there are those who have received the seed in rich soil; they hear the word and accept it and yield a harvest, thirty and sixty and a hundred fold.
Exodus 14 tells us a very powerful story of Gods intervention in the history of his people. We have the house of Israel who just left Egypt and are now encamped along the sea. Then here comes Pharaoh and his chariots and horsemen and troops approaching. The house of Israel had no where to run. They were caught in the middle of the sea and Pharaoh. The house of Israel was now terrified because they faced sure death. Their choice was to die by the hands of Pharaoh or die by drowning in the Sea.
year you shall set aside the tithes of all your fruits that the earth
brings forth, And you shall eat before the Lord your God in the place
which he shall choose, that his name may be called upon therein, the
tithe of your corn, and your wine, and your oil, and the firstborn of
your herds and your sheep: that you may learn to fear the Lord your
God at all times. Deuteronomy 13:22-23
the process of proclaiming the good news. This is a very often used
word in our Christian life. And by Christ's command, “Go into
the world, and preach the good news to all creation.” Mark
God is love. He
loves us and he cares for us. A few years ago, I had a dream. I was
walking on a mountain and was about to enter a cave. A guide came and
looked into the cave and said to me, “Are you going in?” Not
knowing what to do I hesitated. The guide then gave me his hand and
said, “Will you follow me?” Then I woke up.
Be shepherds of
God's flock that is under your care, serving as
overseers-not because you must, but because you are willing, as God
wants you to be; not greedy for money, but eager to serve; not
lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the
This Lent is
memorable for me because my daughter just had her first confession.
It was memorable for me because I got to participate in preparing for
this. The parish had five sessions over five weeks for the child and
parents to prepare them for this celebration. During this
preparation, I got to see a new meaning of the Sacrament of
What I am going to
write is based on my own experience. I was involved in the Parish
council for many years, five years as Education Committee chairman
and two years as Parish Council President. Added to this are my
experience at work of managing people under me and at the same time
being managed by people above me. I have experienced being a follower
and a leader.