Daily Bible Reflections
for October 28, 2006

Dear Friend,

This Saturday, follow the Spirit of God leading you.

Praying for you,

Bo Sanchez



Feast of Sts. Simon and Jude, apostles 


You, Gentiles, are not foreigners or strangers any longer ? Ephesians 2: 19

I know how it is to be a stranger. When I was 16, I stayed in the United States for a year as an exchange student. While my foster family treated me like a daughter, and classmates tried their best to make me feel welcome, there were moments I felt lost.
      For one, I didn?t know my way around. I?d get lost in our suburb. While I spoke English, in the beginning, I had a hard time understanding the accent. And then, everything was different?the food, the weather, the activities, traditions.
      Yup, I was a stranger in a strange land! As I reflect on today?s readings, I shudder at the thought of being a stranger in God?s family. I?d be so uncomfortable, lost, and lonely! I thank our Lord Jesus for dying on the cross, saving us, and making it possible for us to be no longer strangers .
      Yet, there are times when I become like a stranger to God again and again. Those are the times when I disobey Him. Then I feel lost and lonely again. Psalm 19: 8 is indeed true: The laws of the Lord are right, and those who obey them are happy. Saintcha

Are you a stranger in God?s homeland? Don?t be.

Thank you, Lord, that I belong to You! Grant me the grace to obey You always so I will never be a stranger to You!

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Ephesians 2:19-22

Christ is the truest measure of all that it means to be human. In fact, Gaudium et Spes, the Vatican II Document of the Church in the Modern World, tells us that ?Christ reveals man to himself.??Thus, if we desire to discover our truest identity, we will find it in the witness of Jesus? life. Let us make Him the cornerstone of our lives and ensure that we model our lives upon His obedience to the Father?s will so that we will live as true members of His Kingdom. Lord Jesus, help us to be true to ourselves by first being true to you.

19 So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the holy ones and members of the household of God, 20 built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone. 21 Through him the whole structure is held together and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord; 22 in him you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.


Psalm 19:2-3, 4-5

R: Their message goes out through all the earth.

1 [2] The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament proclaims his handiwork. 2 [3] Day pours out the word today, and night to night imparts knowledge. (R) 3 [4] Not a word nor a discourse whose voice is not heard; 4 [5] through all the earth their voice resounds, and to the ends of the world, their message. (R)


Luke 6:12-16

When we proclaim the Gospel to others, we do so under the auspices of the  apostles? commission to do the same. We never give witness to Christ apart from our membership of the Church. This means that whatever we do and wherever we go, we are ambassadors for Christ and His Church. This is not a small responsibility! Let us pray for the grace to be true to this call every day of our lives. Let us pray that we pray that we will have the courage to take it up when we are given the opportunity to give witness to the Gospel.

12 In those days he departed to the mountain to pray, and he spent the night in prayer to God. 13 When day came, he called his disciples to himself, and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named apostles: 14 Simon, whom he named Peter, and his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, 15 Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, Simon who was called a Zealot, 16 and Judas the son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.

my reflections
If we desire to discover our truest identity, we will find it in the witness of Jesus? life.



God?s special verse/thought for me today________________



Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________



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Today we celebrate the feast of two Apostles, Sts. Simon the Zealot and Jude Thaddeus. In lists of the Twelve Apostles (like that in our Gospel today), these two names are always one after the other. Tradition has it that both were martyred in Persia. Simon is known as the Zealot, meaning to say he was probably a member of that radical politico-religious group determined to resist the Roman occupation of Judea. St. Jude Thaddeus, on the other hand, spoke with Jesus during the Last Supper and is also known as the Patron Saint of Desperate Cases.
      Understandably, our Gospel passage for today is about the choice of the Twelve Apostles. This scene has been quite uniquely portrayed and interpreted visually in the movie Jesus (the one directed by Roger Young). Although one movie critic panned the depiction of the scene as somewhat similar to the semifinals of a beauty contest, what is interesting in the video are the specific scenes of what went both before and after the actual naming and calling of the Twelve. As for the former, we know it?it is even in fact explicitly noted in the pertinent Gospel verse: the fact that Jesus went out the mountain to spend the night in prayer, before making the choices for his closest collaborators. And then for the latter, the video shows Jesus empowering the newly chosen Twelve with his first instructions to them (all this while the camera sweeps around the group in a circle), then finally ends with a downward shot of the whole assembly in a group hug.
      And yes, among them are Simon and Jude. They may not have figured prominently in the rest of the Gospels as Peter, James and John did, but they were nonetheless called and chosen by Jesus. And this fact alone is already enough, for the initiative and prerogative always come from God after all. To Him who calls and chooses, be all praise and majesty!
Fr. Martin M.

Am I a Simon and jude kind? Not extremely well-known, but eager to serve Jesus anyway?

May You, Lord, be my sole motivation, not fame nor wealth.

Sts. Simon and Jude, apostles and martyrs, pray for us.

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