Sunday, November 10, 2013
I was on my way to a funeral home one late afternoon for a wake, when I saw this very beautiful rainbow from a distance and what made it more attractive and fascinating was-its backdrop was the color yellow and red leaves on the trees of autumn and the bright ray of the sunlight that just came out after a whole rainy and stormy day. It was then when I thought “What a beautiful way for God to remind us that after the storms of Life there is a beautiful ladder he prepares for all of us through a rainbow assuring us of the reality of the Resurrection.” It made sense afterwards when I reached the funeral home and met the daughter and the son of the deceased outside also looking for the rainbow and how they related to me that their mother loved rainbows and that she even asked that on her funeral “somewhere over the rainbow” should be sung. Jesus said : "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in me shall never die." (John 11: 23-27).
Sunday, November 3, 2013
A reflection on the story of Zacchaeus, will eventually make us realize how we can truly relate with him. For His Life is our Life too as a follower of Jesus. There are three moments in the story where you and I can relate. First. Notice the trouble that zacchaeus had to go through just to see Jesus. Small and stature despised by many because of his work but he had this strong desire to see and meet Jesus and so climb the sycamore tree. Many of us here today are busy with so many things to do at home and at work and they are never ending. Many are tired from the weeks work. But I had to commend you for the trouble in a way you had to undergo just to come tonight and attend the mass to dine with the Lord in the Eucharist, to embrace and to be nourished by Him. You have made a great deal of effort to see Jesus and I truly believe in my heart whatever you have come for and ask for, the Lord will bless you just as He said to Zacchaeus, “Salvation shall come to this House.” Second. Notice Zacchaeus climbing the sycamore tree. He was mall in stature and so he had to rise above the crowd. As a follower of the Lord we are often called to rise above the crowd to do and follow what Christ wants from us. Not just to do what everyone does to fit in but to do what is true what is holy and right and we have to separate ourselves from the crowd and often it is not easy. We can be ridiculed and judge unfairly. It’s not easy but it is always a call for you and me as followers of Jesus. It’s not easy, so we have to have the grace and Gods help to be able to rise above the crowd, to rise above our own imperfection and limitation. How is this possible? Prayer can be a great help. The sycamore tree is the tree of prayer. Third. The third moment is the attitude of zacchaeus that we can imitate, he may be small in stature he may be despised and sinner but Zacchaeus is mall man with a big heart. Because he experienced the saving goodness of the Lord he said “to those I have defrauded I will make amends and repay them back.” We may have our own sinfulness but my dear brothers and sisters we still have the power to do good and this is what zacchaeus did. Truly The Life of Zacchaeus is our Life too and we can learn a lot from him.
Saturday, November 2, 2013
The Theme of our celebration today is “Raising Up” or “Lifting up.” We remember our departed brothers and sisters, our love ones who have died and we remember them with our PRAYERS. Our Faith reminds us that Prayer is the Lifting up of our heart, of our soul, our mind to God. And so we pray for our love ones, wherever they may be, that God will raise them up to His kingdom in Heaven, that they will attain Eternal happiness and Peace. We lift them up to God today. We remember the times when we were still together, we usually lift up one another with our care and love and goodness that we share, now it is through our prayer that we lift them up to the Lord and the Lord will raise them to eternal Glory. We pray to God for ourselves also, for us who often are not ready to let go, who feel down because of the grief for losing a love one, that the Lord will lift us up also from our sadness, from our grief. And may the beautiful memories we had with our love ones become our strength and help also to feel lifted up in our present life. We pray also that we will have the grace to continue lifting up one another in this life time with our good works. And we lift up our hands in prayer with Hope that one day we too after the fulfillment of our mission here on earth will be lifted up to heaven. Amen
Friday, November 1, 2013
As we honor our saints today We are reminded of all “Capital Letter S” Saints. Like St Ignatius, St. Anthony, St Francis and many more whose feast we celebrate within our liturgical year, reminding us of their life, their experiences and challenges in their quest for holiness and offering us examples on how to serve and be close to Jesus. We are also reminded of the “small letter s” saints. Like our grandparents, our parents, and friends or neighbors those who have died who lived lives of good works and holiness, whose lives have touched us. But then, let us not leave ourselves out, for we too are called to holiness, by virtue of our being children of God and baptism, we too are called to perfection, to sainthood. The beatitudes offer us a beautiful reflection of what it entails to strive for holiness, to achieve blessedness. The Lord mentions those who are poor, the poor in spirit, those who mourn the peacemakers and those persecuted. One thing is clear, they are blessed because through it all they endured everything for the love of God and they survived. A Saint therefore can also mean A SURVIVOR. A SURVIVOR. One who even through hardships in life, even in poverty, has full trust in the Lord as his savior who never waivers till the end. One who prays with humility and with persistence even if he says his prayers are never answered and never get right away what he wants. One who mourn and in grief for loss of a love one and yet has hope that one day it will end. One who remains faithful and sincere in his or her love for his or her love one even amidst trials, he or she never gives up One remains faithful to the lord even if he falls many times he stands up again and follows him That’s a survivor and in the end a survivor is blessed. That’s a way to holiness and sainthood that we too can achieve in our life time. We therefore ask the help of our Saints who have gone before us to be our guide and help as we strive to attain holiness in life. Amen
This is a site of "Leaps of Faith" experiences and reflections. Be it Philosophical, Theological, Practical or Personal. It is also a site of Biblical reflections. But Above all, This is a site for YOU and ME.
"Leaps of Faith"
"LEAPS OF FAITH" Can be a religious movement of a person, an inner movement of belief, of trust on the greatest power of all, The Supreme being..Our Creator and Maker..Our God. They can be resolutions of a person everyday in his life to move forward, to be a better person, and to start a new life. They can be decisions of a person in times of great uncertainties, when he is not sure of what will come or happen and he makes a leap of faith. They can be steps, difficult steps that a person makes on his way to change or to start anew. Or they can simply be a persons resolve to fly, to travel..to widen his horizons, to learn more about life and to grow. These are Leaps of faith we make everyday and in great moments of our lives and they are worth considering and reflecting.