The Gospel for Today
Tuesday of the Second Week of Easter
Jesus said to Nicodemus:
“‘You must be born from above.’
The wind blows where it wills, and you can hear the sound it makes,
but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes;
so it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
Nicodemus answered and said to him,
‘How can this happen?”
Jesus answered and said to him,
“You are the teacher of Israel and you do not understand this?
Amen, amen, I say to you,
we speak of what we know and we testify to what we have seen,
but you people do not accept our testimony.
If I tell you about earthly things and you do not believe,
how will you believe if I tell you about heavenly things?
No one has gone up to heaven
except the one who has come down from heaven, the Son of Man.
And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert,
so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.”
Reflection (Sem. Jonathan Cigaral)
Nicodemus was a Jewish ruler who was intelligent and religious. In the gospel, Nicodemus went to Jesus one night, not to ask for instruction but to seek help for him to undergo change within himself. This act of humility of Nicodemus is what we need. We must be able to recognize our own inadequacy for us to be able to surpass all those obstacles that hinder us from becoming the person that we ought to be.
I joined the community of the Holy Apostle Senior Seminary just last year. Prior to entering the seminary, I worked for fifteen years as Senior Manager for Quality Assurance in one of the leading BPO companies here in Manila. I was also an active Church worker in our parish for almost twenty years. Despite all my experiences and accomplishments in both my career and in the Church, I felt that there was a profound need for me to change in order to achieve that level of self-actualization. Thus I entered the seminary. However, there were a lot of introspective assessments that I did before finally making a decision of living everything behind. I consulted a Vocation Director, talked to priests who went through the same experience, attended retreats and recollections, and submitted myself to the sacrament of confession. It was a long process of self discovery to make sure that I am making the right decision. In the center of all these introspection is God. Paying a regular visit to the Blessed Sacrament was an integral part of my discernment.
Just like Nicodemus, with my background and capacity to make my own decision, I could have just said yes and entered the seminary without going through a very lengthy discernment. However, it was the Holy Spirit who guided me and made me feel that I needed to humble myself in the face of God. With what I have gone through, I can say that I made the right decision in following our Lord Jesus Christ.