READINGS for 2006-03-12

Didache | Companion | Sabbath



 If God is for us, who can be against us? ? Romans 8:31

As a squad leader in our community at the Correctional Institution for Women, it is our duty to ensure cleanliness, order, and peace. Each has an assignment to work on, like in Agno, Industrial Shop, Husbandry, General Services, Chapel, education, and culture, too. As the squad leader, I handle the management of the dormitory as the dormin- charge, aside from other duties like emceeing, coordinator of CIW Music Ministry, Legion of Mary, Liturgical Ministry, and others. Whatever the duty, good or bad, the dormin- charge is the main attraction.When there?s something wrong, it?s danger. This situation is very difficult. People from different status in life, education, religion, case, sentence, etc. are put together in one dormitory. These are even ?special children.? I need to be in a good mood at all times so that I would be able to handle everything according to the situation.At times, I even need to be overly sensitive! In the midst of all of these, I always pray that Christ will pour His Holy Blood and Spirit on me and in everything I do for His greater glory. Beth C.

As long as you are with Christ in everything you do, you don?t have the reason to fear.

Lead me, Lord, in everything I will think, say, and do.




Genesis 22:1-2,9,10-13,15-18

This is a horrific story and seems to paint a picture of God that is far from complimentary! It is really only understood in the light of the fact that everything that God asks Abraham to do here. He actually does in terms of giving up His own son as a sacrifice for our sins. The horrific notion of sacrificing one?s son is actually carried out by God in order to bring about our redemption! We have to notice that God does not allow Abraham to go through with the sacrifice of Isaac. However, God does not lift a hand to stop the death of His only Son, Jesus nearly 2000 years later.

1 Some time after these events, God put Abraham to the test. He called to him, ?Abraham!? ?Ready!? he replied. 2 Then God said: ?Take your son Isaac, your only one, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah. There you shall offer him up as a holocaust on a height that I will point out to you.? 9 When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built an altar there and arranged the wood on it. Next he tied up his son Isaac, and put him on top of the wood on the altar. 10 Then he reached out and took the knife to slaughter his son. 11 But the LORD?s messenger called to him from heaven, ?Abraham, Abraham!? ?Yes, Lord,? he answered. 12 ?Do not lay your hand on the boy,? said the messenger. ?Do not do the least thing to him. I know now how devoted you are to God, since you did not withhold from me your own beloved son.? 13 As Abraham looked about, he spied a ram caught by its horns in the thicket. So he went and took the ram and offered it up as a holocaust in place of his son. 15 Again the LORD?s messenger called to Abraham from heaven 16 and said: ?I swear by myself, declares the LORD, that because you acted as you did in not withholding from me your beloved son, 17 I will bless you abundantly and make your descendants as countless as the stars of the sky and the sands of the seashore; your descendants shall take possession of the gates of their enemies, 18 and in your descendants all the nations of the earth shall find blessing ?  all this because you obeyed my command.?


Psalm 116:10, 15, 16-17, 18-19

R: I will walk before the Lord, in the land of the living.

10 I believed, even when I said, ?I am greatly afflicted?; 15 Precious in the eyes of the LORD is the death of his faithful ones. (R) 16 O LORD, I am your servant; I am your servant, the son of your handmaid; you have loosed my bonds. 17 To you will I offer sacrifice of thanksgiving, and I will call upon the name of the LORD. (R) 18 My vows to the LORD I will pay in the presence of all his people, 19 in the courts of the house of the LORD, in your midst, O Jerusalem.


Romans 8:31-34

St. Paul reflects upon the fact that God did not spare His own Son. If this is the case, it is impossible to declare truthfully that God does not or cannot understand our suffering, whatever that suffering may be. There is no greater sacrifice than to give up the life of your child. How grateful we should be that we have a God who loves us so profoundly and deeply. I pray that we never forget to show Him our gratitude for this.

31 What then shall we say to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son but handed him over for us all, how will he not also give us everything else along with him? 33 Who will bring a charge against God?s chosen ones? It is God who acquits us. 34 Who will condemn? It is Christ [Jesus] who died, rather, was raised, who also is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us.


Mark 9:2-10

The father affirms again His unequivocal love for Jesus. There can be no doubt that this mission of Jesus is not a combined work of the Father and the Son. They are as one in the mission that the Father has given to His Son. What should we do? It is simple ? we should listen to the words of the Son, as they will be words of everlasting life. Just as the Jewish people have been listening to the Word of God through the Law and the Prophets for centuries, we now have a new and better mouthpiece, the Son of God Himself who will speak the Word of God to us!

2 After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John and led them up a high mountain apart by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, 3 and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no fuller on earth could bleach them. 4 Then Elijah appeared to them along with Moses, and they were conversing with Jesus. 5 Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, ?Rabbi, it is good that we are here! Let us make three tents: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.? 6 He hardly knew what to say, they were so terrified. 7 Then a cloud came, casting a shadow over them; then from the cloud came a voice, ?This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.? 8 Suddenly, looking around, they no longer saw anyone but Jesus alone with them. 9 As they were coming down from the mountain, he charged them not to relate what they had seen to anyone, except when the Son of Man had risen from the dead. 10 So they kept the matter to themselves, questioning what rising from the dead meant.

my reflections
Is my ear attuned to the Son?s voice?



God?s special verse/thought for me today_______________________


thank You Lord for: ______________________________________




My weekly time with God


Things to be grateful for from the past week





Things to ask God for in the coming week





Most important word God told me this week







Have you ever noticed how easy it is to forget the good things that others have done for you? I think that this is why we are supposed to attend Mass at least every Sunday, so that we will not forget too easily the price that Christ paid for our salvation!
     St. Paul reflects upon the fact that God is always with us. It is never He who abandons us when we feel as though He is not there. It is always we who have walked away from Him or just forgotten that He is there at our side. The most important time for us to remember such promises is in a time of struggle. Unfortunately, this is also the time that we are most likely to forget that this is true! This may sound ironic, but I think if you look back on your life, you will find that what I am saying is true. Therefore we have to devise ways and means of reminding us of the truth in such a way that we will not forget easily.
     This is one of the reasons why all religious groups adopt ritualistic practices, that is, practices that are repeated over and over so they become a part of who we are. I look back on Sunday Mass attendance as a child and I can see how this developed in my life. Going to Mass was simply a part of what Sunday meant to me. It was similar to knowing that after I wake up in the morning, within a couple of hours I will eat breakfast. There are very few things that change that ritual in my life. I am sure that you can think of many other repeated actions that have become rituals to you, such as brushing your teeth, taking a bath and so on..
      Rituals are an important part of our lives as they remind us of certain truths which otherwise may not be so apparent. For the health of our Christian lives, it is important that we develop habits and rituals of prayer, practicing of the Sacraments, service in our communities and so on. These indicate maturity in the Christian life and will also help to protect the gains that God is making in our lives every day. Fr. Steve T.

Am I consistent in my prayer life? Am I consistent in the way I practice the Sacraments? Or am I constantly on a roller coaster in my Christian walk? How can I better ritualize my faith so that it will become a part of my life?

Lord, I recognize that there is a danger in ritual as it can become a practice that loses its meaning if I am not careful. Help me to always seek to grow in my understanding and practice of the Christian way of life so that I will not lose sight of You as the ultimate goal of all that I do.

St. Theophanes, abbot, pray for us.

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