October 17, 2013

The Gospel Today 

Memorial of Saint Ignatius of Antioch, Bishop and Martyr

Luke 11:47-54

The Lord said:
“Woe to you who build the memorials of the prophets
whom your fathers killed.
Consequently, you bear witness and give consent
to the deeds of your ancestors,
for they killed them and you do the building.
Therefore, the wisdom of God said,
‘I will send to them prophets and Apostles;
some of them they will kill and persecute’
in order that this generation might be charged
with the blood of all the prophets
shed since the foundation of the world,
from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah
who died between the altar and the temple building.
Yes, I tell you, this generation will be charged with their blood!
Woe to you, scholars of the law!
You have taken away the key of knowledge.
You yourselves did not enter and you stopped those trying to enter.”
When Jesus left, the scribes and Pharisees
began to act with hostility toward him
and to interrogate him about many things,
for they were plotting to catch him at something he might say.

Reflection (Sem. Jonathan Cigaral):

            “Woe to you, scholars of the law!  You have taken away the key of knowledge.  You yourselves did not enter and you stopped those trying to enter.”

            The Gospel is an invitation for me to examine how I live the life of being a seminarian.  Am I able to influence people to have a closer relationship with God? Or am I like the scholars of the law mentioned in the Gospel who made people, particularly the simple ones, not to go to church?

            After receiving the gift of soutane last June 30, 2013 there was a change on how people looked at me and how they regarded me.  Most people who would see me in my soutane would tell me that I looked so much like a priest already.  Whenever I would go home in my province for my homeweekend, people from our parish would approach me to take my hand to ask for blessing or the “mano.”  Even those elderly church goers whom I used to ask “mano” before, they would be the one to ask for my blessing instead.  There were some who would even address me as “Fr.Jojo.”

            Wearing the soutane has levelled up my image as a person undergoing priestly formation.  It has created an aura of holiness in me.  Having in mind, I am compelled to act and speak the way I ought to be as a seminarian.  Just very recently, one of the youth members of our Music Ministry left a message in my facebook account saying that I am his inspiration in serving the Church.  It was very flattering to know that because of the changes that had happened in my life, I am able to influence people to be closer to God.  Just like what Psalm 84:11 says, “For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord God will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.”  Unlike those scholars of the law who drove people away from the Church because of their unwillingness to accept the Christ in their lives.

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