READINGS for 2007-06-09

Didache | Companion | Sabbath

DIDACHE

I OFFER MY LIFE

“But she from poverty, has contributed all she had, her whole livelihood.” – Mark 12:44

Our parish has been undergoing construction for almost eight years now. Yup! You read it right. Eight years. In fact I think one of these days the finance committee might run out of fundraising activities. Initially the budget was P35million, but since eight years have passed, it now costs P250million to complete the whole project. At some point, I know that some of our parishioners have stopped donating for practical reasons. But some still continue donating as long as their names are announced before the final blessing or are mentioned in the parish bulletin for everyone to see.
      A year ago, for the first time, I invested the last few bills in my wallet to buy a booklet for a fundraising activity. All I prayed for with all my heart was for the completion of our parish church, although we’d been constantly buying the same ticket every year. And guess what? We ended up winning one of the consolation prices – one sack of rice (first class)!
      Well, God is good! Sure, that was my last money, but God has His ways of outgiving us. Marissa E.

REFLECTION:
Trust in God’s provision. He never fails!

“What can we give that You have not given, and what do we have that is not already Yours? All we possess are these lives we’re living and that’s what we give to You Lord.” (from the song “I Offer My Life”)

COMPANION

1st READING

Tobit 12:1, 5-15, 20

All employers have a duty to pay a just wage to their employees for the services they are rendered. This is a requirement of natural justice. The law of the country in which one lives may or may not require a just wage. This is irrelevant as far as the moral responsibility of the employer is concerned. Regardless of the law he must determine what constitutes a just wage and then pay it.
  

1 When the wedding celebration came to an end, Tobit called his son Tobiah and said to him, “Son, see to it that you give what is due to the man who made the journey with you; give him a bonus too.” 5 So Tobiah called Raphael and said, “Take as your wages half of all that you have brought back, and go in peace.” 6 Raphael called the two men aside privately and said to them: “Thank God! Give Him the praise and the glory. Before all the living, acknowledge the many good things He has done for you, by blessing and extolling his name in song. Before all men, honor and proclaim God’s deeds, and do not be slack in praising Him. 7 A king’s secret it is prudent to keep, but the works of God are to be declared and made known. Praise them with due honor. Do good, and evil will not find its way to you. 8 Prayer and fasting are good, but better than either is almsgiving accompanied by righteousness. A little with righteousness is better than abundance with wickedness. It is better to give alms than to store up gold; 9 for almsgiving saves one from death and expiates every sin. Those who regularly give alms shall enjoy a full life; 10 but those habitually guilty of sin are their own worst enemies. 11 I will now tell you the whole truth; I will conceal nothing at all from you. I have already said to you, ‘A king’s secret it is prudent to keep, but the works of God are to be made known with due honor.’ 12 I can now tell you that when you, Tobit, and Sarah prayed, it was I who presented and read the record of your prayer before the Glory of the LORD; and I did the same thing when you used to bury the dead. 13 When you did not hesitate to get up and leave your dinner in order to go and bury the dead, 14 I was sent to put you to the test. At the same time, however, God commissioned me to heal you and your daughter-in-law Sarah. 15 I am Raphael, one of the seven angels who enter and serve before the Glory of the LORD.” 20 So now get up from the ground and praise God. Behold, I am about to ascend to Him who sent me; write down all these things that have happened to you.”

P S A L M

Tobit 13:2, 6, 7, 8

R: Blessed be God, who lives for ever.


2 He scourges and then has mercy; He casts down to the depths of the nether world, and He brings up from the great abyss. No one can escape His hand. (R) 6 So now consider what He has done for you, and praise Him with full voice. Bless the LORD of righteousness, and exalt the King of the Ages. (R) In the land of my exile I praise Him, and show His power and majesty to a sinful nation. (R) 7 As for me, I exalt my God, and my spirit rejoices in the King of Heaven. 8 Let all men speak of his majesty, and sing his praises in Jerusalem.

G O S P E L

Mark 12:38-44

The person who loves God will never seek to draw attention to him or herself for the sake of their own ego or status before others. As soon as we see someone doing this, we can know that the person has a long way to go in the walk of becoming holy. Our relationship with Jesus is first and foremost a private matter between two people, as are all relationships. It is important to remember that it was Jesus who told us that in the Kingdom of God, the first will be last and the last will be first.

38 In the course of Jesus’ teaching he said, “Beware of the scribes, who like to go around in long robes and accept greetings in the marketplaces, 39 seats of honor in synagogues, and places of honor at banquets. 40 They devour the houses of widows and, as a pretext, recite lengthy prayers. They will receive a very severe condemnation.” 41 He sat down opposite the treasury and observed how the crowd put money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums. 42 A poor widow also came and put in two small coins worth a few cents. 43 Calling his disciples to himself, he said to them, “Amen, I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the other contributors to the treasury. 44 For they have all contributed from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has contributed all she had, her whole livelihood.”
  
my reflections
think:
All employers have a duty to pay a just wage to their employees for the services they are rendered.

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God’s special verse/thought for me today________________

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T O D A Y ’ S BLESSING LIST

Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________

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READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Psalm 120-124

SABBATH

BLANK CHEQUE

This is a lesson I heard from Bishop Socrates B. Villegas, Bishop of the Diocese of Balanga.
       If I have one million pesos and donate half of it to a charitable institution, am I generous? No, I’m not. You may call me kind, accommodating, merciful, or concerned, but not yet generous. You see, it is very easy for me to dole out half a million pesos because I still have half a million in the bank. Through time and wise management, my half a million can grow not only twice but also thrice and even more. I am pretty secure and so I can dish out that much.
       We have in the Gospel today a poor widow, an anawim. She had nothing to rely on but God. God was her only security. The two small coins were all that she had next to God. But even those, she gave away as alms to the Temple. Having donated the little she had, she became greater than the rich who put in a sizable amount into the treasury. When she had given her equivalent to a penny, all she had left was God. When the rich had dropped their “half a million” into the collection box, they still had their “other half a million” in their banks.
       Generosity is not giving half of what we have. Generosity is not giving some of what we possess. Generosity is not tithing. Generosity is giving all we have. It is putting into disposal for what is loving all that we possess. It is surrendering everything – not a mere fraction of what we have and are, not just ten percent – to God for His use. Confident that God provides for those who resign everything to Him, generosity is writing God a blank cheque.
       Would we dare? Fr. Bobby T.

REFLECTION QUESTION: Where is my blank cheque for God?

“Dearest Lord, teach me to be generous. Teach me to serve You as I should, to give and not to count the cost, to fight and not to heed the wounds, to toil and not to seek for rest, to labor and ask not for reward, save that of knowing that I do Your most holy will. Amen.” (A prayer attributed to St. Ignatius of Loyola)

St. Ephrem, deacon confessor, pray for us.



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