BLESSINGS FOLLOWING ON FROM BLESSINGS Lk 8:16-18

Sometimes it is difficult to accept the way in which others might seem to be wealthier or more endowed intellectually or more blessed than we seem to be. If we are sensible about this we will realize that there are certain things in life that we just cannot change! Or can we change them?

The most important thing that we have in this life is our relationship with God. Everything else pales into complete and utter insignificance in comparison to our relationship with Jesus. With this in mind, we do have the power to change many of the things in our life for the better! Maybe it is not ‘to the better’ in the sense that the world might understand this concept, but it is ‘to the better’ in regards our journey towards eternal life. The latter is far more important than the former.

The person whose faith is truly alive will be constantly experiencing a drawing deeper into relationship with God. The deeper we go with God, the less the ways and priorities of the world will seem important to us. In fact, some of the saints became so engrossed in their relationship with God that they would forget to eat, […]

By |September 19th, 2016|Daily Scripture|0 Comments

BUILT TO LAST Lk 6:43-49

The other day I was walking along a beach in Zambales and I saw a house being built right at the high tide mark on the beach. It struck me as quite a silly place to build a house because, not only would the waves of a storm threaten its foundations, it was also built right beside the bank of a stream that emptied into the sea which was already causing erosion problems with the foundations on that side of the house. I very much doubt that the house will survive too many typhoon seasons!

Sometimes it seems that we do not make sensible decisions about where and how to build our houses. This is not only the case with houses, but it also seems to ring true regarding the foundation of our spiritual lives as well. Too often as a priest I come across people who have built their spirituality around a particular experience, or set of experiences, that are slowly fading away and taking their faith with it. The only way to build a faith that will endure the test of time is to build it upon a solid commitment to Jesus! Without this it will be destined to […]

By |September 10th, 2016|Daily Scripture|0 Comments

LIGHT AND DARKNESS Lk. 4.31-37

For those early risers out there you would appreciate the morning- it’s a wonderful part of the day when dawn is breaking forth and the first rays of the sun catch the tall trees glistening after the night moisture. If ever I am up at that time I do appreciate these times of glory of God. We all know the power of the sun to illumine the day, the soft light of the moon at night. Scripture is flooded with these two images of darkness and light.
The light overshadows the darkness and that is precisely what happens when Jesus the Son of God is in town! Even the demons shudder as they are exposed to the brilliant light of the Son. They scream and call out, knowing that their reign of darkness has been conquered in the light of Jesus’ coming. Jesus speaks in the power of light and acts in the light. All that comes to him is exposed by the light of day.
The image of darkness and light is also within. Anyone who sins lives in the darkness. Anyone who seeks to follow the teachings of Jesus in obedience and faith will always have the light of life. […]

By |August 30th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

ARE YOU READY. Mtt.25.1-13

I thought it was only the brides that were traditionally late at the wedding! However, in the gospel today, the groom delays his coming. Weddings in the Middle East, as they are anywhere in the world, are the cause of a great celebration, festive and wonderful celebrations of life –and so they should be! In ancient Palestine, as we hear Jesus telling us, the groom could take hours to arrive. Imagine! You are the sponsor at the wedding and two hours later, you are still waiting for the groom or bride to arrive. Would you wait?
In the gospel, Jesus narrates to us that there are 10 bridesmaids waiting to the coming of the groom. Some were wise; others were foolish- why would that be the case? Perhaps the more experienced were used to waiting around. In order for them to be safe, they had extra oil in their lamps – just in case. At midnight, the groom finally arrives. Imagine rising from your sleep and not having any oil. It is late and it seems impossible to buy the extra oil. This becomes a problem because those who have come prepared are the wiser. The others have to go elsewhere. […]

By |August 26th, 2016|Daily Scripture|2 Comments

JESUS CALLS YOU! Jn. 1.45-61

The Church honours the life of St Bartholomew, known in scripture as Nathaniel. The evangelist Philip brings him to Jesus. Nathaniel is under the fig tree, perhaps resting and reading under the shade and protection from the hot sun. His response is typical of the Jews of his time – can anything good come out of Galilee? Jesus affirms this Jewish-ness and Nathaniel, in faith, affirms Jesus as the King of Israel.
The narrative we have in the gospel is typically a call narrative. There is a call or invitation to come and follow. There is a response on the part of the one called, usually a doubt, concern or rejection. There is a response and finally acceptance of the call. In this simple narrative, Philip seeks out Nathaniel and calls him. The response of Nathaniel seems derogatory and offensive. Philip makes the response valid, inviting Nathaniel to come and see. Then there is an acceptance on the part of Nathaniel, who makes the amazing acclamation of faith. Finally, on the part of Jesus there is mission statement. Legend has it that Bartholomew was skinned alive.
Jesus will call us in normal everyday circumstances. Not many of us have the spectacular lightshow […]

By |August 24th, 2016|Daily Scripture|0 Comments

ST BONAVENTURE AND THE MIND OF GOD Mt 12:1-8

St Bonaventure is one of the greatest if not the greatest theologian of the Franciscan Order. His writings on the mind and heart of God for his people are still important sources of thought hundreds of years after his death. It just goes to show that the truth is immutable and endures from age to age. This is why we need to seek the truth and make it the foundation of our lives and reject the fads of our times when they are shallow and meaningless.

The Saints of the Church discover truths about the Christian life that command their attention and energy and so set them o n a path that becomes an example for all precisely because they are seeking and living the truth. This is what sets apart lives that will be remembered for their everlasting significance and those that will be forgotten by the next generation, or even the next fad culture! I think there is something in us all that desires to leave a legacy for the generations to come, but how many of us are willing to focus our lives to the extent that this will be possible?

Sportsmen and women have a singular purpose in […]

By |July 15th, 2016|Daily Scripture|0 Comments

GOD: SIMPLE OR COMPLEX BEING? MT 11:25-27

One of the great dilemmas of Christianity is that its theology is so complex, yet the call to be Christian is so simple! Why the disparity between the two? There is a disparity between the two because God caters for all types of people. There are some who are satisfied with a simple understanding of God and the call to do his will is simply that – discern what God wants you to do and do it! However, there are others who are more interested in plumbing the depths of the nature of God and his relationship with us, his creation and they will not settle for anything less than the best understanding they can get.

Is one the right way, and the other the wrong way? No! Each of us is created as an individual and no two relationships with God are ever going to be the same. It is similar to how some people are happy to put the key in the ignition and drive the car and others want to pull the engine apart and figure out how it all works! One of the critical things to remember is that it is up to the individual to direct […]

By |July 13th, 2016|Daily Scripture|0 Comments
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Love seeks union

When we look at how love works, there are two things that seem to be universal. Firstly, Love seeks to be known. When you fall in love with someone you have a desperate desire to make this love known to the other person. This desire seems to go beyond all reason to the point where you sometimes can’t control yourself. Even if you are not allowed to tell this person that you love them, you will find yourself making it known in all sorts of indirect ways.

Once love becomes known, we find that the second element of love comes in to play: Love seeks union. As soon as someone speaks to us of their love, there is an inherent understanding that that love wants to seek union with us. This is why people find it threatening to be told that they are loved. This knowledge always leads somewhere, and sometimes people are not willing to go to that place.

If you look at the bible, you can see this same dynamic playing out. The Old Testament is God seeking to make his love known. Once this love is spoken clearly, it is only natural that this love would […]

By |March 17th, 2016|The Call|0 Comments
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Unlock the Cage

If you were standing in a room by yourself, with a huge hungry lion in front of you, the natural response would be fear. Absolute fear based on the knowledge that this animal is about to change you in ways that are quite undesirable.

But if you were standing in front of the same lion, while the lion was locked inside a strong cage, your feelings would be completely different. This terrifying animal is now controlled, so that you can relate to it like an animal locked in a zoo.

Sadly, this is a lot like the way that the church relates with God. God is infinite love; passionate love; uncontrollable love that seeks to change us in ways that are sometimes undesirable. If the love of God does not seem as scary as a lion, it is probably because we have put god in a cage.

We do this mostly through the way that we pray. We pray in ways that are safe, where we keep God at a comfortable distance.  ‘Love me and make my life better than it is, but don’t change me or take over my life’.

We can only come to know the full power of God’s love by […]

By |March 10th, 2016|The Call|0 Comments

Feeding the Multitude

Is 25: 6-10a God has provided us with a world that has sufficient food and material wealth for everyone. Why are some people starving and living in terrible poverty? There are many reasons for this but no small part is that the wealthy ignore their responsibility to share! Yes, it is a responsibility before it is a choice! There is a moral obligation here that we ought to respond to but more often than not do not.

Jesus, teach us how to share with those who have less than we do. I know I cannot change the situation of world poverty but I also know I can contribute a little bit to the solution.

Mt 15: 29-37 This feeding miracle is a miracle of hope and providence. The world does have enough food to feed everybody – it just needs to be better distributed. In some countries up to 40% of food is wasted. How can this be acceptable when there are so many who do not have enough to eat? Do the wealthy think they will avoid judgment on this issue? The Scriptures are quite clear they will not! Yes, much poverty has to do with corrupt leaders and other problems […]

By |December 2nd, 2015|Daily Scripture|0 Comments