The Gospel Today
Thursday of the Fourteenth Week in Ordinary Time
Jesus said to his Apostles:
“As you go, make this proclamation:
‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’
Cure the sick, raise the dead,
cleanse the lepers, drive out demons.
Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give.
Do not take gold or silver or copper for your belts;
no sack for the journey, or a second tunic,
or sandals, or walking stick.
The laborer deserves his keep.
Whatever town or village you enter, look for a worthy person in it,
and stay there until you leave.
As you enter a house, wish it peace.
If the house is worthy,
let your peace come upon it;
if not, let your peace return to you.
Whoever will not receive you or listen to your words—
go outside that house or town and shake the dust from your feet.
Amen, I say to you, it will be more tolerable
for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment
than for that town.”
Reflection (Sem. Philip Faustino S. Volante)
“Without cost you have received, without cost you are to give.”
Our batch is named SERVIAM which means “I will serve”. This was the motto of the late Cardinal Sin; “ang lakas ng dating diba?” (it has a strong impact, right?). But our batch name does not end in being just a name; the true invitation for us is to imbibe Serviam in its real sense, and that is to serve without asking for anything in return which in all honesty is easier said than done.
I remember a lay minister in our parish in Malolos whom we will call Brother “B”. Brother B is not the best lay minister, and he is not the best guitarist we have either, but I admire Brother B because he never gets tired of serving the Lord. He gives communion to more sick people than the other lay ministers who complain of going from one house to another; he lends his service for free while some of the instrumentalists in the parish are getting paid, and even though he himself is sick and has no money to pay for his medication, Brother B continues to attend meetings, recollections and serve in the mass without asking anything from the parish. “Kanyang kinalimutan ang sarili para maglingkod sa Panginoon at kanyang bayan” (He denies himself to serve the Lord and His Church). Maybe it is clear to him that he is not serving anyone or someone, but he is serving the Lord. That more than anything else, he wants to please God more. He knows that God will be the one to pay for everything at the end of days because with God, everything is accounted for.
I pray to God that like Brother B, I may go beyond myself and learn to be a Serviam not only by name, but by identity. May I serve not because of what to expect after everything, but to serve for God.