Ano ang bulong bulungan ngayon?

Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, August 12, 2018

Reading 11 KGS 19:4-8

Elijah went a day’s journey into the desert,
until he came to a broom tree and sat beneath it.
He prayed for death saying:
“This is enough, O LORD!
Take my life, for I am no better than my fathers.”
He lay down and fell asleep under the broom tree,
but then an angel touched him and ordered him to get up and eat.
Elijah looked and there at his head was a hearth cake
and a jug of water.
After he ate and drank, he lay down again,
but the angel of the LORD came back a second time,
touched him, and ordered,
“Get up and eat, else the journey will be too long for you!”
He got up, ate, and drank;
then strengthened by that food,
he walked forty days and forty nights to the mountain of God, Horeb.

Responsorial Psalm PS 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9

R. (9a) Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
I will bless the LORD at all times;
his praise shall be ever in my mouth.
Let my soul glory in the LORD;
the lowly will hear me and be glad.
R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
Glorify the LORD with me,
Let us together extol his name.
I sought the LORD, and he answered me
And delivered me from all my fears.
R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
Look to him that you may be radiant with joy.
And your faces may not blush with shame.
When the afflicted man called out, the LORD heard,
And from all his distress he saved him.
R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
The angel of the LORD encamps
around those who fear him and delivers them.
Taste and see how good the LORD is;
blessed the man who takes refuge in him.
R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.

Reading 2EPH 4:30—5:2

Brothers and sisters:
Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God,
with which you were sealed for the day of redemption.
All bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, and reviling
must be removed from you, along with all malice.
And be kind to one another, compassionate,
forgiving one another as God has forgiven you in Christ.

So be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love,
as Christ loved us and handed himself over for us
as a sacrificial offering to God for a fragrant aroma.

AlleluiaJN 6:51

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the living bread that came down from heaven, says the Lord;
whoever eats this bread will live forever.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

GospelJN 6:41-51

The Jews murmured about Jesus because he said,
“I am the bread that came down from heaven, “
and they said,
“Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph?
Do we not know his father and mother?
Then how can he say,
‘I have come down from heaven’?”
Jesus answered and said to them,
“Stop murmuring among yourselves.
No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him,
and I will raise him on the last day.
It is written in the prophets:
They shall all be taught by God.
Everyone who listens to my Father and learns from him comes to me.
Not that anyone has seen the Father
except the one who is from God;
he has seen the Father.
Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever believes has eternal life.
I am the bread of life.
Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died;
this is the bread that comes down from heaven
so that one may eat it and not die.
I am the living bread that came down from heaven;
whoever eats this bread will live forever;
and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.”

Preaching Faith

Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
August 12, 2018
John 6:41-51

Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. (Jn 6:47-48)

I am currently having my pastoral clinical education in one of the hospitals in the Metro Manila. Aside from visiting the patients and attending to their spiritual needs, we also have processing sessions guided by our supervisor. During one of the sessions, our supervisor asked me, “Where is the ultimate source of your preaching?” As a member of the Order of Preachers, I was caught off guard. My initial reaction was to say our deeply revered motto, “Contemplare, at contemplata aliis tradere (to contemplate, and to share the fruits of one’s contemplation).” He pressed further and asked what is behind this contemplation. I began scrambling for answers. “Is it study? Community? Or prayer? He said that those were right answers, but there is something more basic. I admitted I am clueless. While he was smiling, he said “It is faith.”

His answer is very simple and yet makes a lot of sense. We pray because we have faith in God. We go to the Church because we have faith in the merciful God who calls us to be His chosen people. As for myself, I entered the Dominican Order because I have faith that generous God invites me to this kind of life. We preach because we trust in the loving God and we want to share this God with others.

I have spent years studying philosophy and theology at one of the top universities in the Philippines, but when I meet the patients with so much pain and problems, I realize that all my achievements, knowledge and pride are coming to naught. How am I going to help patients having troubles to settle hospital bills with astronomical amount? How am I going to help persons in their dying moments? How am I going to help patients who are angry with God or disappointed with their lives? However, as a chaplain, I need to be there for them, and the best preaching is in fact, the most basic one. It is not preaching in the forms of theological discourse, philosophical discussion, and a long sermon or advice. To preach here is to sharing my faith and to receive their faith. I am there to be with them, to listen to their stories and struggles, to share a little humor and laughter, and to pray together with them. To pray for them is the rare moments that I pray with all my faith because I know that only my faith I can offer to them.

In our Gospel today, we read that some Jews are murmuring because they have no faith in Jesus. Yet, Jesus does not only call them to simply trust in Him, but also to literally eat Him because He is the Bread of Life. The faith in the Eucharist is indeed a tipping point. It is either the craziest of the crazy or the greatest faith that can move even a mountain. As Christians who believe in the Eucharist and receive Jesus in every Mass, we are tremendously privilege and challenged to have and express this faith. However, when we fail to appreciate this meaning and beauty of this faith, and only receive the Bread of Life in a routinely and mechanical fashion, we may lose altogether this faith.

As people who go to Church every Sunday and receive the Eucharist on a regular basis, do we truly believe in Jesus the Bread of Life? Does our faith empower us to see God in the midst of our daily struggles and challenges? Do we have faith that we can share when it matters most?

Br. Valentinus Bayuhadi Ruseno, OP  with Xenon Oble and Marvin Obedo
Sunday Gospel Reflections
Fr. Toto Cerada, SDB
Mary Help of Christians Parish, Calamba City

Ryt teaching contributes 2 an upryt way of living. Learn 2 discern d spirit of truth & d spirit of deception. Support watever leads 2 man’s material & spiritual well-being. Like Jesus, denounce wat misleads man & fight for wat helps him 2 reach d divine.

D scribe simply repeated wat Jesus said abt d commandmnts. And Jesus appreciated him 4 that. Learn 2 see gudness in wat pipol say or do. Compliment their efforts. Say only gud things that pipol nid 2 hear frm u.

We shud not treat pipol as “dogs” & giv them jz scraps of our goods. Treat them as worthy of their humanity. No one is beyond God’s mercy. Love d saintly & d “unworthy”. Happy St. Dominic’s feastday!

Fr. Ramon T. Salibay, O.P.
The Parish Church of Balangiga in Eastern Samar
The Balangiga bells are three church bells taken by the United States Army from the town church of Balangiga, Eastern Samar in the Philippines as war trophies after reprisals following the Balangiga massacre in 1901 during the Philippine-American War. One church bell is in the possession of the 9th Infantry Regiment at Camp Red Cloud, their base in South Korea

Pentagon chief favors return of Balangiga bells to PH

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has thrown support for the return of the contested Balangiga bells to the Philippines.

The U.S. Embassy in Manila announced that Mattis signed the documents favoring the return of the bells which were taken by American troops as spoils of war 117 years ago.

Mattis reportedly signed the papers on Aug. 10, as people of Balangiga in Eastern Samar province marked the feast of their town’s patron saint, San Lorenzo de Martir.


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