EASTER WEEK: FRIDAY GOSPEL Jn 21:1-14

posted Apr 28, 2011, 7:06 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

Peter was a professional fisherman and he knew so much about fishing. So when Jesus requests him to "Put out into the deep and lower yours nets for a catch," he might have thought to himself, how can the son of a carpenter tell me where to cast the net and what does he know about fishing? But when he did what Jesus asked him to do, he could only be overwhelmed by what happened. He sure knew how to fish but he failed to recognize the Lord of fish and fishermen. Peter from now would never cast the net for a catch of fish but he will live his life to catch people for the kingdom of God. Let us like Peter hereafter point to the world, 'it is the Lord' by the way we witness to him.

EASTER WEEK: THURSDAY GOSPEL Lk 24:35-48

posted Apr 27, 2011, 3:08 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

We, human beings, have a problem. Before we can believe or accept anything to be true and real we need to see and verify it. Many people saw the Lord after his resurrection. To many, he appeared and with some even he had meals. Jesus opens the minds and hearts of his disciples by explaining the scriptures to them. The disciples failed to understand that the centrality of the gospel is the cross but it does not stop there. Through the cross defeated our enemies and won for us forgiveness of our sins. The way to glory is the cross, and when we recognize this great truth we shall recognize Jesus too. The recognition of Jesus is not to be limited to a personal experience but it has to be shared with others. The true recognition of Jesus enables us to be his witnesses here on earth and we become Jesus alive in the world. Hence, let us ask ourselves: Is Jesus a living reality in my life?

GOOD FRIDAY: GOSPEL Jn 18:1-19:42

posted Apr 21, 2011, 5:22 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

Today is Good Friday. Why Good? Because God is good and He gave us his only Son for our salvation. Jesus told us there is no greater love than to lay down one's life for the loved ones. He also told us unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies it bears much fruit. Jesus' death reveals his power, for his death is a self-offering to the Father for our redemption. God saved Isaac on Mount Moriah from death but He would not spare His only Son on Mount Calvary because God wants us his children to be saved from eternal death. "In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the expiation for our sins" (1 Jn 4:10). There is no substitute for Jesus and he willingly fulfils the will of his Father. Are we prepared to die with Jesus that we may rise with him?

HOLY THURSDAY GOSPEL Jn 13:1-15

posted Apr 20, 2011, 12:19 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

Jesus is going to have his last meal with his diciples. Before Jesus eats the meal he stoops down to wash the feet of his disciples. Jesus has to wash away the human dirt of sin and unless we allow him to do that we have no part with him. He washes just not our feet but our whole person in order to make us worthy of the meal that he is going to serve. The menu for this meal is his own body and blood. He instituted the Priesthood and the Eucharist by laying down his own life for his friends. Now Jesus says, "Do this in memory of me," mean to say, perpetuate his abiding presence in our world until he comes on the last day by coming together as often as possible in his name to celebrate the Eucharist.

WEDNESDAY: HOLY WEEK GOSPEL Mt 26:14-25

posted Apr 19, 2011, 12:47 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

The question that still rngs in our ears is, why did Judas betray his Master? Was his treachery motivated by greed or hatred, or bitter disappointment because of disillusionment? Did he really desire and intend his Master to die? Perhaps we shall never be able to give an exhaustive answer to these ever haunting questions. However, Judas betrayed the eternal Truth, he deny the goodness of life. Judas remains an icon of  those who want to get rid of truth, kill goodness and justice. We too are tempted to use God for our own purposes. According to some of us it is God who must change according to our needs and desires, and not us changing to God. For Christians, Holy Week is an opportune time to see, live and experience the mystery of the suffering Christ and change to God.

TUESDAY: HOLY WEEK GOSPEL Jn 13:21-33.36-38

posted Apr 18, 2011, 4:37 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

Jesus'disciples are put to test as he prepares himself to make his final journey. The two characters of today's gospel are Peter and Judas. One deliberately plans to betray his Master while the other, in a moment of weakness, denies him. Both are chosen by Jesus himself and both have apparently left everything for Jesus. Judas betrays Jesus out of love for money while Peter denies Jesus out of his weakness and cowardice. Jesus knows both the strenght of Peter's loyalty and the weakness of his resolution. He can be the spokesperson for his colleagues and also a timid, fearful and impulsive person. He can begin to walk on the water counting on the strenght of his Master. The treachery of Judas, however, is seen at its worst when he can only think of himself and his gain. Satan can turn holiness into pride, discipline into cruelty and affection into affectation.

HOLY WEEK: MONDAY GOSPEL Jn 12:1-11

posted Apr 17, 2011, 2:22 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

Love is not love until it is experience or shared. John the Baptist showed his love for God by standing in living for the truth; Mathew the tax collector left his lucaritive business and followed Jesus; Saul the persecutor became Paul who lived and died for Christ; Blessed Teresa of Kolkata left the safety and security of Loreto Convent to look after the rejected, the sick and those dying on the streets. Mary's in the gospel took the most precious thing she had and spent it all on Jesus. Mary's action was motivated by her love for Jesus and her gratitude for God's mercy. The fragrance that spread in the room was not merely of the perfume but of forgiveness and goodness of the Lord. The fragrance also announced the presence of the Lord in Mary's life and the salvation she received from him.

FRIDAY 5TH WEEK OF LENT GOSPEL Jn 10:31-42

posted Apr 14, 2011, 3:21 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

Jesus asks a question to his detractors, "Many good deeds have I shown you from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?" Jesus healed the sick, forgave the sinners, fed the hungry and raised the dead, and these works could not have come from human beings. Though many people witnessed these miracles of Jesus, they never acknowledge him as Son of God. So they accused him of blaspheming and wanted to stone him. Jesus made himself a sin-offering for us, to ransom us from condemnation and slavery to sin. He spoke of his Father consecrating him for this mission of salvation (Jn 10:36). Jesus challenged his opponents to accept his works if they could not accept his words. Jesus is the perfect teacher in that he does not base his claims on what he says but on
  what he does.

THURSDAY 5TH WEEK OF LENT GOSPEL Jn 8:51-59

posted Apr 13, 2011, 4:38 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

What is in name? From the Old Testament time onwards we see God calling people unto his service and naming them. Abram was called and he was given the name Abraham. The name that Mary, the mother of Gd, receives from the angel is "full of Grace." Jesus receives from his Father the name "my beloved Son." Saul becomes Paul and the list goes on. A name is a relationship. It is a unique and personal relationship between the one who names and the named. As it is said, "to have named is to have claimed." God exhorts us to leave behind the old way of life and accept a new life in him.  Abram left everthing and went to a place that the Lord had shown him. The new name given to Abram by the Lord indicates a new covenantal relationship with God. To accept this new covenant one needs to let go of the past life and totally surrender oneself to the will of God because Jesus, the "I AM", has named and claimed each of us for his Father. Do we live the name "children of God" obtained for us by Jesus through his death and resurrection?

WEDNESDAY 5TH WEEK OF LENT GOSPEL Jn 8:31-42

posted Apr 12, 2011, 12:55 AM by Fabian MANUKIALONA

For the followers of Christ true freedom is power to know and live what is right, frue and good. Jesus offers his disciples true freedom - freedom from fear, selfishness, prejudice, self-righteousness.... The good news of Jesus sets us free from these obstacles of freedom. True freedom is a gratuitous gift of the Holy Spirit that enables one to think what is right, true and good. This gift is given to those who have the "goodwill." Am I a person of goodwill?

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