August 18, 2014

The Gospel Today

Monday of the Twentieth Week in Ordinary Time

Matthew 19:16-22

A young man approached Jesus and said,
“Teacher, what good must I do to gain eternal life?”
He answered him, “Why do you ask me about the good?
There is only One who is good.
If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.”
He asked him, “Which ones?”
And Jesus replied, “You shall not kill;
you shall not commit adultery;
you shall not steal;
you shall not bear false witness;
honor your father and your mother;
and you shall love your neighbor as yourself
.”
The young man said to him,
“All of these I have observed. What do I still lack?”
Jesus said to him, “If you wish to be perfect, go,
sell what you have and give to the poor,
and you will have treasure in heaven.
Then come, follow me.”
When the young man heard this statement, he went away sad,
for he had many possessions.

Reflection (Sem. Wilbert John Alivar):

“Teacher, what good must I do to gain eternal life?”  This question that the rich young man raised to Jesus might also be the one that I would like to ask Christ if I would have the opportunity to meet Him in person. The rich young man declared his faithful observance of all the commandments before Jesus. In my case, I would say that I would have difficulty following all the commandments because of the many personal issues that I need to confront. Because of my past failings, I still do not have the courage to tell Christ that I have obeyed His commandments. I am indeed a sinner yet I am thankful that God still called me and enable me to respond to the vocation to the priesthood. However, I recognized the presence of my weaknesses and the works of the evil spirit luring me to sin again. But I am confident of the grace of God that would strengthen me as I go along in formation.

I also realized that I would like to have eternal life with Christ who enumerated the commandments to the rich man. One of the commandments is to honor one’s father and mother. In my case, I would say that this is one struggle for me because  my mother opposes my decision to enter the seminary. Following her would mean that I would have to leave the seminary formation. But, I would like to give myself a chance to see and explore whether priesthood is God’s plan for me. I can only pray that she would understand and give me this opportunity.

As I submit myself to the seminary formation, I am offering my whole self to God in such a way that everything I have belongs to Him. As a first year brother, I am still in the process of discovering myself and identifying whatever attachment that would hinder me from following Christ completely.

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