“End of Times”
Jesus tells His listeners to be aware of the signs of the “end of times,” but be vigilant and not to be fearful, but to trust and have faith in Him.
When these signs come, be assured, have faith and hope in Him. In trials and difficulties, His assurance is, “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10). Let us listen to the message of hope within us and to those people who speak of letting go, moving on, and growing on. Let us not listen to the evil one who specializes in fear and blame, or to people who are always negative.
Please remember that in the final judgment, we will be judged according to the concrete deeds of love and charity we have done toward the least or the less in our community.READ MORE
“The Life After”
With the growing influence of absolute relativism and secular worldview, it is easy to imagine why more and more people believe that this life is the only life. The Judeo-Christian concept of the resurrection or life after death does not support a secular hedonistic lifestyle; eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow you will die.
The Sadducees does not believe in the resurrection, citing the Levirate Law on marriage, they insidiously believed that any after life will throw things in chaos, thus they asked, v. 33 “Now in the resurrection whose wife will that woman be? Jesus answered them in two parts. First, life in the next life is not the same as the present life. Because in the resurrection, people will be like angels, they no longer die. And second, arguing in the context of Moses experience of the burning bush, God revealed Himself as the God of the Patriarch, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He is not the God of the dead but of the living.READ MORE
Zacchaeus was a Jew, thus also considered the Son of Abraham. But because he was a tax collector collaborating with the Roman Empire, he is considered a traitor and a violator of the covenant. He abused his position, for this he was despised by his people. But Zacchaeus heard about a man named Jesus, who was proclaiming the mercy and love of God. In Jesus, He found a chance to come back to the Lord. When he heard He was coming, he ran ahead to have a glimpse of Jesus. It took a glimpse to discover God’s mercy, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” The conversion of Zacchaeus is a miracle of God’s mercy. God the Father works joyfully to accept the sinner who meets and welcomes Jesus.
Realizing his misdeeds, he resolved to amend and promised restitution for those he cheated. St. Ambrose said, “Evil does not consist of having wealth, but in not putting it to good use; for just as riches are obstacle for rich people, they are also means for virtues for good people.”READ MORE
“He who humbles himself will be exalted.” (Lk. 18:14)
How does one approach God justified? Jesus tells us that in order to be justified before God, one must approach with humility and mindful of one’s sinfulness. God’s heart is with those who acknowledge their sinfulness and ask for His forgiveness and compassion. That is why, in the parable, between the two, the tax collector went home justified. Spiritual writers say that prayer justifies; “for repentant prayer or supplicant repentance, raising up the soul to God and re-uniting it to His goodness, without doubt obtains pardon in virtue of the Holy Love which gives it this sacred movement.” (St. Francis de Sales, Treatise on the Love of God, 2, 20).READ MORE
“Pray always without becoming weary.” (Lk. 18:5)
Jesus tells us to pray without ceasing. Praying unceasingly is not a practice in futility but a witness of a trusting and living faith. God is infinitely much better than the wicked judge who succumbed to the persistency of the widow only because he fears being bothered constantly by the widow. God is not bothered by our persistency, because He sees a living faith behind it, faith that believes that God listens to our prayer. “He prays without ceasing he who prays with good works and works with prayerful spirit. Only thus can we pray without ceasing as we have been commanded.” (CCC 2742-2745)READ MORE
“He fell at Jesus feet and thank Him...” Lk. 17:16
Jesus asked them to show themselves to the priest who will declare them clean, they put their trust in Jesus and were going to see the priest when one of them went back to give thanks to God before going to the priest. Of the ten, only one was truly healed through faith, that is, saved, v. 19 “Your faith has saved you.”
It's actually an invitation to pray and to show gratitude to God: “What better prayer can we think in our mind, or utter with our tongue, or express with our pen than, “Thanks be to God.”? Nothing can be said more briefly than this, or heard more joyfully, or used more faithfully.” (St. Augustine, Epistolae, 41, 1)READ MORE