Nov 29-Dec 4:Kindly click onhttps://frtonyshomilies.com/ for missed Sunday and weekday homilies, RCIA & Faith formation classes: Click on the link given after the name of the saint ,for a short biography. Nov 29 Monday: Mt 8: 5-11: 5 As he entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him, beseeching him 6 and saying, “Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, in terrible distress.” 7 And he said to him, “I will come and heal him.” 8 But the centurion answered him, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; but only say the word, and my servant will be healed. 9 For I am a man under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to one, `Go,’ and he goes, and to another, `Come,’ and he comes, and to my slave, `Do this,’ and he does it.” 10 When Jesus heard him, he marveled, and said to those who followed him, “Truly, I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such faith. 11 I tell you, many will come from east and west and sit at table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. Additional reflections: https://bible.usccb.org/podcasts/video; https://catholic-daily-reflections.com/daily-reflections/; https://www.epriest.com/reflections
Context: Jesus’ healing of the centurion’s slave, described in today’s Gospel, shows us how God listens to our Faith-filled prayers and meets our needs. Centurions were reliable, commanding, brave captains in charge of 100 soldiers. They were used to giving and receiving commands. They were the backbone of Roman army. According to Luke’s account (Lk 7:1-10), this centurion loved the Jews and respected their religious customs. He knew that Jews incurred ritual uncleanness on entering the house of a pagan, and, wanting to save Jesus this inconvenience, said he was unworthy to have Jesus come into his pagan house. The Centurion loved his sick servant, trusted in Jesus’ power of healing, and was ready to face the ridicule of his fellow-centurions by pleading before a Jewish rabbi.
The remote healing: The centurion asked Jesus just to shout a command as he did with his soldiers, so that the illness might leave his servant by the power of that order. Jesus was moved by his Faith and rewarded the trusting Faith of this Gentile officer by telling him: “Go; be it done for you as you have believed.”
Life messages: 1) We need to grow to the level of Faith of the centurion by knowing and personally experiencing Jesus in our lives. We do so by our meditative daily reading of the Bible, by our daily personal and family prayers, by frequenting the Sacraments, especially the Eucharistic celebration, and by surrendering our lives to Jesus in rendering loving service to others in all humility. Fr. Kadavil (https://frtonyshomilies.com/) L/21
Nov 30 Tuesday (St. Andrew, the Apostle) (https://www.franciscanmedia.org/saint-of-the-day/saint-andrew):Mt 4: 18-22: 18 As he walked by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. 19 And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 Immediately they left their nets and followed him. 21 And going on from there he saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets, and he called them. 22 Immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed him. (Mark 1: 14-20) Additional reflections: https://bible.usccb.org/podcasts/video; https://catholic-daily-reflections.com/daily-reflections/; https://www.epriest.com/reflections
Two accounts of Andrew’s call: There are two accounts of Andrew’s call as an apostle by Jesus in the Gospels. According to Matthew and Mark, Jesus selected four fishermen, Andrew and his brother Peter, with James and his brother John, right from their fishing boats. Peter and Andrew “immediately” left their nets and followed Jesus. Similarly, James and John “immediately” left the boats and their father and followed Jesus. According to John’s Gospel, John and Andrew were the disciples of John the Baptist, and they had been encouraged to follow Jesus by John the Baptist, who pointed out Jesus as “the Lamb of God”(Jn 1:38-30), suggesting that Jesus was the long-awaited Messiah. One apostle leading other to Christ: First, we find Andrew, after spending a night with Jesus, leading his brother Peter to Jesus. Next, in the Gospel, Andrew appears in the scene of the multiplication of the bread where Jesus miraculously fed a multitude. While Philip gave a bad report of the situation, Andrew went among the multitude and found a boy who offered to give his small food packet of five bread and fish to Jesus to feed the multitude. Andrew who saw Jesus miraculously supplying wine at Cana knew that Jesus could work another miracle with five barley loaves and two dried fish. We find Andrew a third time in the Gospel, bringing a few Greek pilgrims to Jesus. They had first approached Philip for help and Philip had sought the help of Andrew to bring them to Jesus.The preaching and the martyrdom: According to Church tradition, Andrew preached the Gospel in Greece and Turkey and was crucified at Patras on an X-shaped cross to which he was tied. According another tradition, he also preached in Scotland and Russia. St. Andrew is the patron saint of Russia, of Scotland, and of fishermen.
Life messages: 1) In order to be effective instruments in the hands of God and to continue Jesus’ preaching, healing and saving ministry, we, too, need to repent of our sins on a daily basis and to renew our lives by relying on the power of God. 2) As the first four apostles, including Andrew, gave priority to Christ and left behind everything, we, too, are to give priority to Jesus and Jesus’ ideals in our vocation in life. 3) St. Andrew’s zeal is a real inspiration to us. When St. John the Baptist pointed to Jesus, saying, “Behold! The Lamb of God!” Andrew and John, Zebedee’s son, immediately ran after Him with their inquiries. After talking with Jesus, Andrew wasted no time in bringing his brother, Simon Peter, to meet Jesus. We can almost picture Andrew, full of excitement, telling everyone he met about our Lord. Through Andrew’s evangelization, St. Peter, our first pope, was brought to Jesus. (Fr. Kadavil) (https://frtonyshomilies.com/) L/21
Dec 1 Wednesday: Mt 15: 29-37: 29 And Jesus went on from there and passed along the Sea of Galilee. And he went up on the mountain and sat down there. 30 And great crowds came to him, bringing with them the lame, the maimed, the blind, the dumb, and many others, and they put them at his feet, and he healed them, 31 so that the throng wondered, when they saw the dumb speaking, the maimed whole, the lame walking, and the blind seeing; and they glorified the God of Israel. 32 Then Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion on the crowd, because they have been with me now three days, and have nothing to eat; and I am unwilling to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way.” 33 And the disciples said to him, “Where are we to get bread enough in the desert to feed so great a crowd?” 34 And Jesus said to them, “How many loaves have you?” They said, “Seven, and a few small fish.” 35 And commanding the crowd to sit down on the ground, 36 he took the seven loaves and the fish, and having given thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 37 And they all ate and were satisfied; and they took up seven baskets full of the broken pieces left over. Additional reflections: https://bible.usccb.org/podcasts/video; https://catholic-daily-reflections.com/daily-reflections/; https://www.epriest.com/reflections
The context: The Decapolis was a loose federation of ten cities with a mixed population of Jews and Gentiles. Jesus took six months to travel to the Decapolis via Tyre and Sidon and to return to Galilee. The healing and feeding described in today’s Gospel took place on a hill near the Sea of Galilee after Jesus’ return from the Decapolis. Jesus healed the lame, the maimed, the blind, and the dumb, then, expressed His pity for the hungry multitude to the apostles. When they asked Jesus where they were supposed to get enough bread to feed this enormous crowd, He asked how many loaves they had. They told Him, “Seven, and a few small fish.” Jesus had the crowd sit, then took the loaves and fish, gave thanks to God for them, broke them and gave them to the apostles to give to the people. After the crowd had eaten their fill, the Apostles, again at Jesus’ command, collected the broken pieces; they filled seven baskets with the fragments.
Life messages : 1) We need to help Jesus to heal the blind, the lame, the deaf and the mute today. Jesus desires to open our blind eyes and to loosen our tongues so that He may see and speak to the spiritually hungry through us. Jesus asks us for our hearts in order to touch the lives of people in our day through us, just as Jesus touched the lives of millions through saintly souls like Francis of Assisi, Fr. Damien, Vincent de Paul and Teresa of Calcutta (Mother Teresa.).
2) We need to be fed by Jesus. Jesus continues to feed us in his Church with His own Body and Blood in Holy Communion and with the word of God through the Holy Bible. Fr. Kadavil (https://frtonyshomilies.com/) L/21.
Dec 2 Thursday:Mt 7:21, 24-27: 21 “Not everyone who says to me, `Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 24 “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house upon the rock; 25 and the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat upon that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house upon the sand; 27 and the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell; and great was the fall of it.” Additional reflections: https://bible.usccb.org/podcasts/video; https://catholic-daily-reflections.com/daily-reflections/; https://www.epriest.com/reflections
The context:In today’s Gospel, the concluding part of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus gives us two warnings: that we must match our profession of Faith with actual obedience to the will of God, and that we must build our life on the firm foundation of Jesus’ teachings. Worship of God without commitment to the word of God is hypocrisy. Sincerity in a Christian can be demonstrated not by what one says but by what one does. Fine words can never be a substitute for fine deeds. Thus, today’s Gospel gives Jesus’ call to authentic discipleship based on the strong foundation of Gospel teaching. Acting on the words of Christ shows the authenticity of one’s Christian commitment. Jesus contrasts a wise man who practices what he believes with a fool who does not practice his religious beliefs, using the images of one man who built his house on firm rock and another who built his house on loose sand in summer. Only a house with solid and firm foundation can resist the storm and flood, and only a person whose life has strong spiritual foundations can stand the test. Building on loose sand is the way to destruction. Thus, the two builders sum up two ways – the way of perfect righteousness and the way of self-righteousness. On the Day of Judgment, the first will stand; the second will fall.
Life messages : 1) We need to synchronize our practice of the Faith with our profession of it: The test of our Sunday worship is the effect it has in our homes and workplaces and on our relationships with friends and neighbors. The great test is the care and consideration we show to our neighbors, many of whom commonly experience the absence of affection, of words of encouragement and of forgiveness. 2) We need to build our families on strong foundations : There can be no great marriage and no great family without a solid foundation. Such a foundation exists when the husband and wife are the love of Christ for each other and for their children in deeds as well as in words. Our culture and nation also need strong foundations based on the moral law of God and love of Jesus Christ, and this is possible only if our families are built on these foundations. Fr. Kadavil (https://frtonyshomilies.com/) L/21
Dec 3 Friday (St. Francis Xavier): https://www.franciscanmedia.org/saint-of-the-day/saint-francis-xavier Mt 9:27-31: 27 And as Jesus passed on from there, two blind men followed him, crying aloud, “Have mercy on us, Son of David.” 28 When he entered the house, the blind men came to him; and Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to him, “Yes, Lord.” 29 Then he touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith be it done to you.” 30 And their eyes were opened. And Jesus sternly charged them, “See that no one knows it.” 31 But they went away and spread his fame through all that district. Additional reflections: https://bible.usccb.org/podcasts/video; https://catholic-daily-reflections.com/daily-reflections/; https://www.epriest.com/reflections
The context: Today’s Gospel describes Jesus’ miraculous healing of two blind men who approached him with trusting Faith. Blindness was common in Palestine because of the intense glare of the eastern sun, clouds of unclean flies and people’s ignorance of cleanliness and hygiene. The two blind men followed Jesus from the street all the way to the house Jesus entered, loudly expressing their confidence in the “Son of David” and requesting mercy. Jesus found in these men what was required for receiving a miracle, namely a strong and expectant Faith, an earnest desire for vision and a sincere prayer for mercy. Although they were instructed not to tell anyone of their healing, as soon as they were healed, they immediately expressed their gratitude by bearing witness to Jesus’ healing power throughout the town.
Life messages : 1) We, too, need light and eyesight because we are often blind to the needs and expectations of those around us and even living with us. We are also often blind to the presence of Jesus living in us and in others, to the blessings God showers on us and to the protection God gives us every day. Hence, let us pray for the spiritual eyesight to realize and experience the presence of Jesus in ourselves and others, and for the good will to do good to and for others. Fr. Tony (https://frtonyshomilies.com/) L/21
Dec 4 Saturday (St. John Damascene, Priest, Doctor of the Church) https://www.franciscanmedia.org/saint-of-the-day/saint-john-damascene : Mt 9: 35-10: 1, 5, 6-8: 35 And Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every disease and every infirmity. 10:1 And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every infirmity. 5 These twelve Jesus sent out, charging them, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no town of the Samaritans, 6 but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7 And preach as you go, saying, `The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ 8 Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying, give without pay. (Cfr. Mt 9: 35- 10: 1) Additional reflections: https://bible.usccb.org/podcasts/video; https://catholic-daily-reflections.com/daily-reflections/; https://www.epriest.com/reflections
The context: Today’s Gospel describes the three chief activities of Jesus’ mission, namely heralding, teaching and healing, and tells how Jesus selected the twelve apostles as disciples and helpers in the Messianic mission. Jesus was primarily the Herald of God his Father, bringing mankind the Good News that God is a loving, forgiving, merciful and compassionate Father Who wants everyone to be saved. Secondly, Jesus was a Teacher and preacher who taught the Gospel, or the Good News of the Kingdom of God, by living an exemplary life, demonstrating God’s love, mercy, forgiveness, and compassion. Thirdly, Jesus was a Healer, spending much time healing people of their bodily, mental, and spiritual illnesses. The Gospel for today also mentions that Jesus selected ordinary men of no social status as apostles to continue this preaching and healing mission, and gave them both healing power and preaching authority to do so.
Life messages : 1) As Christians, we share Christ’s mission of preaching and healing. This means that we, too, have to demonstrate by our exemplary and transparent Christian lives the mercy, the forgiveness, and the unconditional love of Jesus. 2) We are also called to act as the agents of healing by praying for the sick, by helping them to get the necessary medical and nursing help, and by encouraging them, supporting them and boosting their morale. Fr. Kadavil (https://frtonyshomilies.com/) L/21