LIVE AS A DISCIPLE

Sunday 31st May – Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity

Reflection: Matthew 28: 16-20

LIVE AS A DISCIPLE

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations…”

As we read these words of today’s gospel reading let us focus on ourselves as disciples who have been “made” as Jesus instructed. We, who have been baptized in the name of the Trinity are an evidence that Christ’s first disciples truly carried out the great commission. Yet, our discipleship is not manifested simply in being members of the Body of Christ. Our discipleship calls us to an entirely different way of life – a life that reflects our conversion. Are you living as a disciple of Christ?

Today’s readings reveal what our lives should entail as disciples:

  1. Obedience to God’s laws: In the first and gospel readings, Moses and Jesus call for God’s people to be obedient to His laws. Living as disciples entails living in total obedience to God in ALL situations of our lives.
  2. Sharing Christ’s suffering: St Paul reminds us that our sharing in Christ’s glory as his co-heirs must be preceded by sharing in His sufferings. When we stand up for truth and purity despite opposition from peers; when we decide to obey God no matter the cost, we share in Christ’s sufferings and truly live as disciples.
  3. Trust in Christ’s presence: Jesus promised His disciples His ever abiding presence. As His disciples, we must trust in Jesus’ abiding presence especially in the difficult moments of life. His presence is manifested in a special way in the Sacraments. He gives Himself to us in the Eucharist and raises hands of mercy and forgiveness over us in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. As we avail ourselves of these live-giving encounters with the Lord, we grow in grace to live as true disciples.

Dear friend, St Paul tells us that only those moved by the Holy Spirit are sons of God (Rom 8:14). Ask the Holy Spirit today for the grace to truly live as a faithful disciple always.

PRAYER: Thank you Jesus for the gift of my faith. Please help me to live in obedience to you and to trust you in every situation of my life. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 205What happens in Confirmation?

In confirmation the soul of a baptized Christian is imprinted with a permanent seal that can be received only once and marks this individual forever as a Christian. The gift of the Holy Spirit is the strength from above in which this individual puts the grace of his Baptism into practice through his life and acts as a “witness” for Christ.

HIDE A TREASURE: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven” Matthew 7:21 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Deut 4: 32-34, 39-40; Psalm 33: 4-6, 9, 18-22; Rom 8: 14-17; Mt 28: 16-20

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MAKING THE MOST OF WHAT YOU HAVE

Saturday 16th May – Saturday of the 6thweek of Eastertide

Reflection: Acts 18: 23-28

MAKING THE MOST OF WHAT YOU HAVE

It is an irony of life that the little a man has and considers as an excuse for failure is all another man grabs to give an amazing success story. Surely, the mind that dwells in failure will always find more than enough reasons for its sustenance. If we would truly manifest as sons and daughters of God; if we are to position ourselves for greater blessings of God, we must start maximizing the seemingly little opportunities and privileges we have in life.

In today’s first reading, amidst the many positive attributes mentioned of Apollos, there was something of special interest about him: “he had only experienced the baptism of John.” John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance (Acts 19: 4), it did not confer the sacramental grace of a new birth which the baptism of water and the Spirit instituted by Christ does. (John 3: 3-7; Matthew 28:19, CCC 720). Little wonder St. Paul considered it necessary to later baptise Apollos and his colleagues though they were already participating in the activities of the Church (Acts 19: 1-6). Before Apollos’ proper initiation, into the family of God, through the Sacrament of Baptism he had fully disposed himself to the service of God. He was fully maximizing the grace available to him by his acceptance of the Good news!

Beloved, have you been baptised? Have you received the sacrament of confirmation? Do you partake in the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ? How well are you making the most of the indispensible graces received in these sacraments? Let us this day do away with the myriad of excuses we often give and begin to maximise the opportunities and privileges we have in life. It is only by doing this that we can prove ourselves ripe for greater upliftment in life.

PRAYER: For all you have given me, I say thank you Jesus. For the privileges I have wasted, I ask for your mercy. Strengthen me oh Lord that I may cooperate with You to make the most of all that You have blessed me with! Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: CCC 1131 – The sacraments are efficacious sings of grace, instituted by Christ and entrusted to the Church, by which divine life is dispensed to us. The visible rites by which the sacraments are celebrated signify and make present the graces proper to each sacrament. They bear fruit in those who receive them with the required dispositions.

HIDE A TREASURE: “Do not be deceived; God is not mocked, for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap” Galatians 6:7 RSV-CE

Readings for today: Acts 18: 23-28; Psalm 47: 2-3, 8-10; John 16: 23-28

SAVED TO SAVE; FREED TO FREE

Tuesday 12th May –Tuesday of the 6th Week of Eastertide

Reflection: Acts 16:22-34

SAVED TO SAVE; FREED TO FREE

Paul and Silas were stripped, publicly whipped, and thrown into jail. Yet, their persecution did not in any way undermine their love and faith in God; they praised God in the darkest moment. God was moved by their selflessness and released His power which shook the prison foundations, freeing them and all the other prisoners. Even the jailer was not exempt from freedom and salvation which he badly needed. He recognized the need for salvation with that single encounter, hence His question: “Sirs, what must I do to be saved” (Acts 16:30).

Dear friend, your testimony to Christ’s wonders in your life is incomplete until it results in your total conversion and the conversion of others. God wants to manifest his power through your steadfastness and thanksgiving even everything seems hopeless. Just as we find strength and hope in the stories of heroes of our faith in Scripture and Church’s tradition, our own journey of salvation will be a testimony for others in times to come. God uses our victory stories to help our brethren become victorious as well.

Bearing this in mind, we must give thanks to God in all things. This attitude of praise is powered by genuine trust in God’s power to save us and set us free. Let us thank God for the gift of salvation today and ask for grace to be agents of salvation to others through all the events of life we encounter. Like Paul and Silas, we are all saved to save others and freed to set others free.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, grant me courage to see in all my troubles, your saving power which is mighty and sufficient for me and active in saving others through me. Give me a heart of praise and in times of need.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 290 – How does God help us to be free men?

Christ wants us to be “set free for freedom” (see Gal 5:1) and to become capable of brotherly love. That is why he sends us the Holy Spirit, who makes us free and independent of worldly powers and strengthens us for a life of love and responsibility.

HIDE A TREASURE: “For we are like a sweet smelling incense offered by Christ to God, which spreads among those who are saved and those who are being lost”.

2 Corinthians 2:15 GNB

Today’s Readings: Acts 16: 22-34; Psalm 138: 1 -3.7-8; John 16:5-11

COME TO THE LIGHT

Sunday 15th March – 4th Sunday of Lent

Reflection: John 3:14-21

COME TO THE LIGHT

At the heart of the good news is the message of reconciliation. Through the death of His only beloved Son, God has reconciled us to himself and made us his adopted children, opening the way to eternal life for us all. Yet, as Christ tells Nicodemus, for us to benefit from the redemption, we must believe in Christ Jesus.

Believing in Christ is not merely a passive proclamation which we make at baptism; it is an active participation in the life to which He calls us – a life of holiness. Through Christ, light has come into the world and this light must be reflected in our daily lives. It must permeate every aspect of our lives and illumine the areas that have been darkened by sin. As we welcome the light of Christ, we are transformed by Him and freed from condemnation.

Beloved, are you still living in the darkness of sin and lustful passions that lead unto death? Are you willing to come to the light of Christ? Through your baptism, you have already become a child of God; you have entered into a covenant with Him and this covenant must shape the life you live. Today, Christ beckons on you to come out of the darkness of sin and embrace the life to which He has called you – a truly abundant life. Remember that when we stay away from the light, we are judged and condemned.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, I confess all my sins today (mention your sins), please forgive and let me dwell in the light of Christ forever. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 200: What happens in Baptism?

In Baptism we become members of the Body of Christ, sisters and brothers of our Redeemer, and children of God. We are freed from sin, snatched from death, and destined from then on for a life in the joy of the redeemed

HIDE A TREASURE: “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and this is not your doing, it is the gift of God. Ephesians 2:8 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: 2 Chronicle 36:14-16, 19-23; Psalm 137: 1-6; Ephesians 2:4-10; John 3:14-21.