Tag: Daily mass homily

Repent From Jealousy And Start Exploring Your God Given Potentials. 

Repent From Jealousy And Start Exploring Your God Given Potentials. 

*Repent from Jealousy and Start Exploring Your God-given Potentials*

(Homily for Friday 22nd March 2019).

_“Here comes this dreamer. Come now, let us kill him and throw him into one of the pits; then we shall say that a wild beast has devoured him, and we shall see what will become of his dreams” *(Genesis 37:19-20).*_

The parable of the householder who planted a vineyard teaches us a lesson; that God expects us to be fruitful. He knows what we are made of. If the householder had not planted rich seeds, he would not send people to ask for the fruits. God demands our fruits because He knows we have all it takes to deliver.

You are created to excel. You have talents, you have gifts, you are a bundle of potentials. Regardless of whatever anyone may have said to you in the past, just bear this one truth in mind; you have the seed of God within you, you are capable of much more than you think.

As much as God has so endowed you with gifts, know that there would always be people who would do everything to try to stop you from shining like Joseph’s brothers. What offence did Joseph commit against his brothers to warrant such hatred? Nothing, other than the fact that Joseph discovered his potentials early in life.

The brothers of Joseph made a costly mistake; one that we often make ourselves. Instead of looking inwards to explore the rich deposits God has put in us, we start to envy others for their natural gifts as if to say they are any better than us.

Let’s reason together, comparing yourself with others is a crime against humanity. This is because we are all unique creatures. No two persons are born with the same amount of gifts and abilities. It is just like a razor blade comparing itself with an axe. Yes, both of them can cut things, but while the razor is designed to cut hair for instance, the axe is designed to cut trees.

Why do I become sad when I see people excelling in life? Am I a razor feeling sad for my inability to cut trees or an axe wishing I could shave beards? Do I even realize it is wrong for me to think that I am less privileged or unfortunate in life just because I am not able to do things that others are doing? Hating others for their gifts is just a sign of failure on our part to discover ours.

*As much as I cannot deny my jealousy towards others, I must bear in mind that there are persons who are secretly praying for something bad to happen to me so that they can feel good; so that they can have something to gossip and laugh.*

Again, bear in mind that the hatred of others CANNOT stop you from actualizing your full potentials so long as you remain positive and take advantage of every stumbling block. At times, when people think they are going to put an end to your dreams, they do not realize they are indirectly helping you get there.

My dear, whatever be the case, don’t forget you are divinely created by God, never forget your potentials can never die. Just keep shining; keep bearing fruits; keep moving. If you cannot fly, then run, if you cannot run, then walk, if you cannot walk, crawl. If they throw a stone at you, turn it into a brick and build a house with it. If they throw hot water on you, use it to boil your food and eat.

*Never give up on you! Be Fruitful!* (Genesis 1:22).

Let us Pray: Lord Jesus, when you come to collect my fruits, may I never be found wanting, Amen!

*Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Friday of the 2nd Week of Lent. Bible Study: Genesis 37:3-28, Psalm 105 and Matthew 21:33-46).*

-Fr. Abu.

Christian Perfection Is Loving Your Enemies. 

Christian Perfection Is Loving Your Enemies. 


​*Christian Perfection is Loving Your Enemies*

(Homily for Saturday 16th March 2019).

_“… So that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” *(Matthew 5:45).*_

In anything you do, never be content with being average. Always strive to be the best. The moment you stop striving to be better, you stop growing and this means you start dying. Jesus tells us today to aim for perfection because the God who created us is perfect and has wired into us a desire for perfection.

In today’s first reading, we hear the voice of Moses making us understand that worshipping God is a covenant agreement. If we do our part, God will do His part by taking us as His own.

Moses says, “you have declared this day to walk in His ways, to keep His statues and ordinances, to obey His voice and the Lord has declared that you are a people of His own possession, that He will set you high above all nations, you shall be a people holy to the Lord.”

Come to think of it, the summary of all the commandments of God is to Love our neighbours but the question is: Who is a neighbour? Is it simply the one who is friendly to you, speaks your language, lives close to your house or shares things with you? Definitely Not.

Your neighbour also includes the one who wants to destroy you, the one you are not supposed to talk to (just as Samaritans had no business with Jews), it includes the one who hates you, the one who is eagerly waiting to hear bad news from you, the one who has vowed to make life difficult for you and the one who never responds to your greeting.

Honestly, it is not easy to love people who only respond to us with hatred. But today, Jesus tells us that loving our enemies is the ultimate test of perfection in Christian spirituality. If we only love those who love us in return, then we are simply average Christians, ordinary church goers, we are no different from non-believers.

To be perfect is to have a heart so fresh and clean that it gives no room for hatred; a heart so sweet that it is never bitter at anyone; a heart so holy that it never contemplates evil against anyone. This is how God created us, this is how we were as kids. This is why Jesus says unless we become like children, we cannot enter heaven.

Let us Pray: Lord Jesus, teach me to love all my neighbours as myself, Amen!

*Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Saturday of the 1st Week of Lent. Bible Study: Deuteronomy 26:16-19, Psalm 119 and Matthew 5:43-48).*

Fr. Abu.

In Praying, Faith Is More Important Than Words. 

In Praying, Faith Is More Important Than Words. 

*In Praying, Faith is More Important Than Words*

(Homily for Tuesday 12th March 2019).

“And in praying, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him” *(Matthew 6:7-8).*

As the saying goes, “empty vessels make the loudest noise.” A prayerful Christian is not necessarily a noisy Christian. The effectiveness of prayer is not in the number of words used, but the faith underneath every word.

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus already told us to pray in secret so that our prayer is heard only by God who sees in secret. When we begin to shout and shakedown entire buildings, we not only draw attention to ourselves, we also display a gross lack of faith in the power of God who hears even the whispers of our mind.

In truth, when faith is lacking, we tend to use more words because it always seems to us that God hasn’t heard it enough or that God needs to be shouted at before He can take action. Jesus warns us today not to be like the Gentiles who heap up empty phrases.

*What is an empty phrase?* A meaningless combination of words or could it be what many often refer to as speaking in tongues? It is one thing to truly have the gift of the Holy Spirit, utterance, but a different thing altogether when you just make unintelligible sounds so that people would think you are speaking in tongues.

Before ever we set out to pray, we must first believe that the God we are about to talk to is more than able to do anything we ask. In this way, our prayer carries more weight even when we do not use many words. For instance, in today’s first reading, we hear God saying that just as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return without first watering the earth, so is every word that comes from His mouth.”

This means, it really doesn’t matter how many times we repeat it, God’s words are “Yes” and “Amen” They must surely work. Those who believe in prayer know that every word uttered in faith works like magic, they don’t fuss like the prophets of Baal who were attempting to challenge Elijah.

In teaching us to pray, notice that Jesus makes use of intelligible and coordinated statements. Jesus did not speak in tongues. Jesus did not even repeat any phrase or statement. Jesus addresses God as our Father. He praises God, asks that His Will be done (not ours), He asks for our daily bread, forgiveness of sin and deliverance from evil/temptations.

The Phrase, *“Let Your Will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven” is one that teaches us to be truly humble and place our absolute trust in God’s direction for our lives.* Why am I always trying to give God specific instructions about my future and my life when in truth, God created me without even seeking my permission?

In the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus also makes us understand that prayer is never complete without the necessary corresponding actions on our part. That is to say, if I do not forgive those who sin against me, I am actually asking God not to forgive my own sins against Him.

It doesn’t matter how many words I use, if there is bitterness in my heart, if I cannot give to my neighbour what I am asking from God, my words at prayer carry no value. How can I be asking God for protection when I am silently wishing the death of my neighbour? How can I be asking for my business to prosper when I long to laugh over the collapse of my neighbour’s business? How can I be asking for satan to die when I exult him afterwards by living a sinful life? *Prayer is not just about words, it is Faith in Action.*

Let us Pray: Lord Jesus, deepen my faith in you that I may realize the need to use less, but only meaningful words in prayer and grant that my actions may not nullify for my prayers, Amen!

*Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Tuesday of the 1st Week of Lent. Bible Study: Isaiah 55:10-11, Psalm 34 and Matthew 6:7-15).*

Fr. Abu.

How You Can Fall In Love With The Blessed Virgin Mary Through The Pope’s Beautiful New Year Homily.

How You Can Fall In Love With The Blessed Virgin Mary Through The Pope’s Beautiful New Year Homily.

God believes in mankind, because its first and preeminent member is his own Mother.

Here is a Vatican translation of Pope Francis’ homily for the Solemnity of Mary Mother of God, January 1, 2019.

~

“All who heard were amazed at what the shepherds told them” (Lk 2:18). To be amazed: this is what is asked of us today, at the conclusion of the Octave of Christmas, as we continue to contemplate the Child born for us, lacking everything yet abounding in love. Amazement is what we should feel at the beginning of each year, for life is a gift that constantly gives us a chance to make a new start, even from the most lowly of circumstances.

Today is also a day to be amazed by the Mother of God. God appears as a little child, held in the arms of a woman who feeds her Creator. The statue before our eyes depicts the Mother and Child so close as to appear as one. That is the mystery we celebrate today, which gives rise to boundless amazement: God has become one with humanity forever. God and man, always together, that is the good news of this new year. 

God is no distant lord, dwelling in splendid isolation above the heavens, but love incarnate, born like us of a mother, in order to be a brother to each of us, to be close to us: the God of closeness. He rests on the lap of his mother, who is also our mother, and from there he pours out upon humanity a new tenderness. Thus we come to understand more fully God’s love, which is both paternal and maternal, like that of a mother who never stops believing in her children and never abandons them. God-with-us, Emmanuel, loves us despite our mistakes, our sins, and the way we treat our world. God believes in mankind, because its first and preeminent member is his own Mother.

At the beginning of the year, let us implore from Mary the grace to be amazed at the God of surprises. Let us renew the amazement we felt when faith was first born in us. The Mother of God helps us: the Mother who gave birth to the Lord, now presents us, reborn, to the Lord. She is a mother who generates in her children the amazement of faith, because faith is an encounter, not a religion. Without amazement, life becomes dull and routine, and so it is with faith. The Church too needs to renew her amazement at being the dwelling place of the living God, the Bride of the Lord, a Mother who gives birth to her children. Otherwise, she risks turning into a beautiful museum of the past. 

A “Church museum”. Our Lady instead gives the Church the feel of a home, a home in which the God of newness dwells. Let us receive with amazement the mystery of the Mother of God, as the inhabitants of Ephesus did at the time of the Council. Like them, let us acclaim her “Holy Mother of God”. From her, let us allow ourselves to be gazed upon, to be embraced, to be taken by the hand.


Let us allow ourselves to be gazed upon. 

Especially in times of need, when we are entangled in life’s knots, we rightly lift our eyes to Our Lady, to Our Mother. Yet first, we should let ourselves be gazed upon by Our Lady. When she gazes upon us, she does not see sinners but children. It is said that the eyes are the mirror of the soul; the eyes of Mary, full of grace, reflect the beauty of God, they show us a reflection of heaven. Jesus himself said that the eye is “the lamp of the body” (Mt 6:22): the eyes of Our Lady are able to bring light to every dark corner; everywhere they rekindle hope. As she gazes upon us, she says: “Take heart, dear children; here I am, your Mother!”

This maternal gaze, which instils confidence and trust, helps us to grow in faith. Faith is a bond with God that engages the whole person; to be preserved, it needs the Mother of God. Her maternal gaze helps us see ourselves as beloved children in God’s faithful people, and to love one another regardless of our individual limitations and approaches. Our Lady keeps us rooted in the Church, where unity counts more than diversity; she encourages us to care for one another. Mary’s gaze reminds us that faith demands a tenderness that can save us from becoming lukewarm.


Tenderness: The Church Of Tenderness.

Tenderness is a word that today many want to remove from the dictionary. When faith makes a place for the Mother of God, we never lose sight of the centre: the Lord, for Mary never points to herself but to Jesus; and our brothers and sisters, for Mary is mother.

The gaze of the Mother, and the gaze of every mother. A world that looks to the future without a mother’s gaze is shortsighted. It may well increase its profits, but it will no longer see others as children. It will make money, but not for everyone. We will all dwell in the same house, but not as brothers and sisters. The human family is built upon mothers. A world in which maternal tenderness is dismissed as mere sentiment may be rich materially, but poor where the future is concerned. Mother of God, teach us to see life as you do. Turn your gaze upon us, upon our misery, our poverty. Turn to us thine eyes of mercy.

From Mary’s gaze, we now turn to her heart, in which, as today’s Gospel recounts, she “treasured all these things and pondered them” (Lk 2:19). Our Lady, in other words, took everything to heart; she embraced everything, events both good and bad. And she pondered all these things; she brought them before God. This was her secret. In the same way, she now takes to heart the life of each of us: she wants to embrace our every situation and to present it to God.

In today’s fragmented world, where we risk losing our bearings, a Mother’s embrace is essential. How much dispersion and solitude there is all around us! The world is completely connected, yet seems increasingly disjointed. We need to entrust ourselves to our Mother. In the Scriptures, Our Lady embraces any number of concrete situations; she is present wherever she is needed. She visits her cousin Elizabeth; she comes to the aid of the newlyweds in Cana; she encourages the disciples in the Upper Room… Mary is a cure for solitude and dispersion. She is the Mother of con-solation: she stands “with” those who are “alone”. She knows that words are not enough to console; presence is needed, and she is present as a mother. Let us allow her to embrace our lives. In the Salve Regina, we call her “our life”. This may seem exaggerated, for Christ himself is “life” (cf. Jn 14:6), yet Mary is so closely united to him, and so close to us, that we can do no better than to put our hands in hers and to acknowledge her as “our life, our sweetness and our hope.”

And in the journey of life, let us allow ourselves to be taken by the hand. Mothers take their children by the hand and lovingly introduce them to life. But how many children today wander off on their own and lose their way. Thinking they are strong, they get lost; thinking they are free, they become slaves. How many, forgetting a mother’s affection, live in anger with themselves and indifference to everything! How many, sad to say, react to everything and everyone with bitterness and malice! Life is such. Showing oneself “malicious” even seems at times to be a sign of strength. Yet, it is nothing more than weakness. We need to learn from mothers that heroism is shown in self-giving, strength in compassion, wisdom in meekness.


God himself needed a Mother: how much more so do we! Jesus himself gave her to us, from the cross: “Behold your mother!” (Jn 19:27). He said this to the beloved disciple and to every disciple. Our Lady is not an optional accessory: she has to be welcomed into our life. She is the Queen of peace, who triumphs over evil and leads us along paths of goodness, who restores unity to her children, who teaches us compassion.


Mary, take us by the hand. Clinging to you, we will pass safely through the straits of history. Lead us by the hand to rediscover the bonds that unite us. Gather us beneath your mantle, in the tenderness of true love, where the human family is reborn: “We fly to thy protection, O Holy Mother of God”. Let us together pray these words to Our Lady: “We fly to thy protection, O Holy Mother of God”


Happy New Year To You All! 

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