Service     by:   Sr. Leizle SSS

August 20, Saturday, 20th week Ordinary Time – [ The greatest among you will be your servant. All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted." Matthew 23:1-12] Kingly mission, one of the threefold missions in Christ (Priestly, Prophetic and Kingly Mission) which means service to others’ needs. A real authority is a form of service. By virtue of our baptism, we are all brothers and sisters in Christ and we share in His mission. Jesus is telling us that the greatest among us is not the one who has the impressive titles but rather the one who best serves the needs of people around them. I reflect today, how do I give my service to others?

The Greatest Commandment     by:   Sr. Leizle SSS

August 19, Friday, 20th week Ordinary Time – [ “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” He said to him, “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.” Matthew 22:34-37] “With all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.” In other words, with my whole being! But what does it mean to love God with my whole being? First and foremost, let me be aware and be in-touch with God's way of loving; it is the love of Jesus who died for all humanity. In a very personal way, God loves me in spite of my sinfulness. No amount of my sins that I committed that can separate me from His love. In fact, in my unworthiness, He called me to be his servant in the Blessed Sacrament… I reflect today, how about me? How is my love for God? Am I all-in for Him? Am I completely committed to serving my Lord and His holy will? Lord, help me to love You with my whole heart, mind, soul and strength. Help me to love You with my whole being. May Your love transform me into Your instrument of grace for others. Amen.

The Banquet     by:   Sr. Leizle SSS

August 18, Thursday, 20th week, Ordinary Time – [“Tell those who have been invited: Look, I have prepared my dinner, my oxen and my fat calves have been slaughtered, and everything is ready; come to the wedding banquet.” … For many are called, but few are chosen.’ Matthew 22:1-14] I contemplate: the King has sent me an invitation for his wedding banquet. I went in. I saw many people in the hall, of all ages with different status- poor, rich, simple, extravagant, elite, ordinary, etc. The King is very pleased looking at the number of people who came to his banquet. He mingled with them and talked to them. I felt warm in my heart looking at the Mighty King descending from his throne to mingle and interact with his invited people. I behold, who is this Mighty King who is generous to invite all walks of life and be able to interact with each one? O God, help me to respond as best as I can to Your holy invitation. Amen.

Envy     by:   Sr. Leizle SSS

August 17, Wednesday, 20th week, Ordinary Time – [“Are you envious because I am generous?” Matthew 20:15b] This line comes from the parable of the landowner who hired workers at five different times during the day (first- hired at dawn, second at 9 a.m., others at noon, 3 p.m. and 5 p.m). Those hired at dawn worked about twelve hours and those hired at 5 p.m. worked only an hour. Surprisingly, the owner paid all the workers the same amount as if they all worked a full twelve hour day… My initial reaction here… I got envious, if I may say in words- it is unfair, it is unjust. But when I set my eyes on the Owner (God Himself), all I can see is His generosity that is beyond comprehension. He is indeed the God of Generosity who gave His All for all- Jews and Gentiles, young and old, women and men, sinners and saints! Lord, there is envy in my heart. Grant me the grace of humility to surrender that over to You. Teach my heart to have a sincere gratitude for the many graces and mercy You have given me and to the people around me. Amen.

A Thought for Today     by:   Sr. Leizle SSS

August 16, Tuesday, 20th week, Ordinary Time – [Peter said in reply, ‘Look, we have left everything and followed you. What then will we have?’ Jesus said to them, ‘Truly I tell you, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man is seated on the throne of his glory, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold, and will inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first. Matthew 19:23-30 ] As a young religious, sometimes I find myself asking the same questions as Peter in today’s reading especially when I am having difficulties in my vocation- living community life, doing my ministry, and persistent personal issues that need head-on battle; ‘What about us? We have left everything and followed you. What are we to have, then?’ When I have these thoughts, I look back at the times when Jesus’ promise of a hundredfold return for anything I gave up came true in my life. I let myself be touched by God’s generous love and faithfulness.

The Assumption of Mary     by:   Sr. Leizle SSS

August 15, Monday - August 15, Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary – [“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my Savior for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant. From this day all generations will call me blessed: the Almighty has done great things for me and holy is his Name.” Luke 1:46-49] The Assumption of Mary to Heaven is a dogma of the church where in Mary was assumed to have heaven body and soul, Mary is the first who followed Jesus, the first perfect disciple. Mary was given to us as our mother when Jesus entrusted her to John when he was on the cross, ‘Behold your mother.’ How is my relationship to Mary, the Mother of Jesus? How do I understand her personally, and her role in my personal story of salvation? Do I seek her motherly care? Lord, help me to love Your mother with the same love You have for her. Mary, my mother and queen, pray for me!

A Thought for the day     by:   Sr. Leizle SSS

August 13, Saturday, 19th week Ordinary Time – [“Let the children come to me, and do not prevent them; for the Kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” After he placed his hands on them, he went away. Matthew 19:14-15] Jesus laid His hands on the children and prayed for them. What a blessing! These acts bring a tremendous amount of grace on these little ones. They may not realize what was happening, but certainly, they received so much grace. In the present time, Jesus is no longer physically present in our world to give us the same way of blessing, laying His on us and praying for us. But we have the Eucharist, his real presence! We receive him daily in the Eucharist through Holy Communion, nourishing us spiritually. What great blessings! Lord, grant me the grace of proper disposition as I receive You daily in the Eucharist. Come into my heart, dear Lord, and transform my life by Your gentle touch. Amen.

Marriage     by:   Sr. Leizle, SSS

August 12, Friday, 19th week Ordinary Time – ['Have you not read that the one who made them at the beginning "made them male and female", and said, "For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh"? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.' Matthew 19:3-12] Marriage. In my younger years, I also dreamed of being married to the person I love, to raise my own family… but God had other plans for me, He called me to another kind of ‘marriage’… Thank you Lord for the gift of the Sacrament of Marriage. I pray in a special way for all married couples that they may remain faithful to their marriage vows. Also, for those whose marriages are in difficulties, bless them O Lord, grant them the necessary graces they need to save their marriage and family. Keep the love burning in their heart. Amen

Forgiveness     by:   Sr. Leizle, SSS

August 11, Thursday, 19th week Ordinary Time – [ "Lord, if another member of the church sins against me, how often should I forgive? As many as seven times?" Jesus said to him, "Not seven times, but, I tell you, seventy-seven times… 'You wicked slave! I forgave you all that debt because you pleaded with me. Should you not have had mercy on your fellow slave, as I had mercy on you?' Matthew 18:21-35] Jesus continues to give emphasis on forgiveness. He tells a parable about the mercy of God, which is one of the strongest divine qualities. Mercy is deeper than forgiveness… When I reflect how God is merciful to me, how He lavishes His love on me, that He readily forgives my sins whenever I turn to Him, moves me to give my forgiveness to others. This is the key to forgive—first is to experience and fill our hearts with God’s merciful love so that we can also forgive those who wrong us… It is not easy, but with God’s grace, it is possible. Lord, forgive my stubbornness of heart. I repent of my harshness and my lack of forgiveness. In Your compassion please forgive me and fill my heart with your mercy toward others. Amen

St. Lawrence     by:   St. Peter Julian Eymard

August 10 – (St. Lawrence) There is a fire within in me greater than the one which burns me, said St. Lawrence (PS 304,3)

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