To renew in the apostles the plan of God for their lives as a person, as a disciple, as a community, as a family VD and help them to enter in God’s vision, in his dream of transcendence and hope in order to be open and available for His plan.
Objective of the week:
To renew and ponder the plan of God for our lives as a disciple.
As Pope Francis visited us in the Philippines, we were again reminded of our deepest identity “God’s Children”. God did not adopt us ordinarily but “because of his love, God had already decided that through Jesus Christ he would make us his children – this was his pleasure and purpose”.(Ephesians 1:5) The question is, what is the greatest grace that a child of God receives? “Even before the world was made, God had already chosen us to be his, through our union with Christ, so that we would be holy and without fault before him”. Which means our greatest gift being a child of God is by being a follower of Christ… being Christ’s disciple.
This week, we are again invited to listen attentively in order to renew and ponder the plan of God for our lives as a disciple – its importance, its essentiality, its purpose and its privilege. Thus connect it to what Pope Francis have said in his homily at the Rizal Park when he said:
“Filipinos are called to be outstanding missionaries of the faith in Asia.”
These are sweet words as we listen to it but how difficult is the task. But we are greatly blessed because we are provided by God a community, the Verbum Dei Catholic Missionary Family who always help, guide and teach us in order to make those sweet words of the Holy Father be materialized in each of our lives.
In our prayers this week, let us thank the Lord for giving us this Verbum Dei Catholic Missionary Family. Let us ask the Holy Spirit to make us open in learning and applying all the means that the VD Community have given us. Let us recognize that all of those will form us into a disciple of Christ and leads us to become the missionaries of faith in Asia and to the whole world.
“I called you from that faraway place. I said, ‘You are my servant’.”
(Memorial of St. Scholastica)
8 But you, Israel, my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, descendant of Abraham my friend, 9 whom I have taken to myself, from the remotest parts of the earth and summoned from countries far away, to whom I have said, 'You are my servant, I have chosen you, I have not rejected you,' 10 do not be afraid, for I am with you; do not be alarmed, for I am your God. I give you strength, truly I help you, truly I hold you firm with my saving right hand. 11 Look, all those who rage against you will be put to shame and humiliated; those who picked quarrels with you will be reduced to nothing and will perish. 12 You will look for them but will not find them, those who used to fight you; they will be destroyed and brought to nothing, those who made war on you. 13 For I, Yahweh, your God, I grasp you by your right hand; I tell you, 'Do not be afraid, I shall help you.' 14 Do not be afraid, Jacob, you worm! You little handful of Israel! I shall help you, declares Yahweh; your redeemer is the Holy One of Israel. 15 Look, I am making you into a threshing-sledge, new, with double teeth; you will thresh and beat the mountains to dust and reduce the hills to straw. 16 You will winnow them and the wind will carry them off, the gale will scatter them; whereas you will rejoice in Yahweh, will glory in the Holy One of Israel.
Have you recognized the compassion and mercy of God in your life? Did you hear his call? Are you willing to respond to his call? Does his call give meaning to your identity as a child of God?
“Renew your calling”
2 "I know your works, your labor, and your endurance, and that you cannot tolerate the wicked; you have tested those who call themselves apostles but are not, and discovered that they are impostors. 3 Moreover, you have endurance and have suffered for my name, and you have not grown weary. 4 Yet I hold this against you: you have lost the love you had at first.
Do you see the faithfulness of Christ in your life? Do you recognize his affirmation to you? Are you aware of being lukewarm in loving God? Do you see the importance of renewing each day our commitment to God as a disciple?
“God chooses few persons for the salvation of many”
(Feast of our Lady of Lourdes and World Day of the Sick)
14 For many are invited but not all are chosen.'
12 Now it happened in those days that he went onto the mountain to pray; and he spent the whole night in prayer to God. 13 When day came he summoned his disciples and picked out twelve of them; he called them 'apostles': 14 Simon whom he called Peter, and his brother Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, 15 Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Simon called the Zealot, 16 Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot who became a traitor. 17 He then came down with them and stopped at a piece of level ground where there was a large gathering of his disciples, with a great crowd of people from all parts of Judaea and Jerusalem and the coastal region of Tyre and Sidon 18 who had come to hear him and to be cured of their diseases. People tormented by unclean spirits were also cured, 19 and everyone in the crowd was trying to touch him because power came out of him that cured them all. 20 Then fixing his eyes on his disciples he said: How blessed are you who are poor: the kingdom of God is yours. 21 Blessed are you who are hungry now: you shall have your fill. Blessed are you who are weeping now: you shall laugh. 22 'Blessed are you when people hate you, drive you out, abuse you, denounce your name as criminal, on account of the Son of man. 23 Rejoice when that day comes and dance for joy, look!-your reward will be great in heaven. This was the way their ancestors treated the prophets.
Did you appreciate that God chose you? Do you see it as an opportunity to fulfill your duty as a Child of God? Are you aware of the great need of God for your life as his disciple?
“The desire of God that all men and women be saved and come to the knowledge of the Truth.”
3 To do this is right, and acceptable to God our Saviour: 4 he wants everyone to be saved and reach full knowledge of the truth. 5 For there is only one God, and there is only one mediator between God and humanity, himself a human being, Christ Jesus, 6 who offered himself as a ransom for all. This was the witness given at the appointed time, 7 of which I was appointed herald and apostle and -- I am telling the truth and no lie -- a teacher of the gentiles in faith and truth.
(1 Timothy 2:3-7)
What is the “TRUTH” that God wants us to know and learn? Do you see the big desire of God for your life? Are you willing to work with him in spreading his saving power to all men?
“Speak to my people and form them.”
'Console my people, console them,' says your God. 2 'Speak to the heart of Jerusalem and cry to her that her period of service is ended, that her guilt has been atoned for, that, from the hand of Yahweh, she has received double punishment for all her sins.'
17 Thus says Yahweh, your redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: I am Yahweh your God and teach you for your own good, I lead you in the way you ought to go. 18 If only you had listened to my commandments! Your prosperity would have been like a river and your saving justice like the waves of the sea.
Have you spent a time to recall how are you accompanied in order to learn the truth about Christ? Do you see the sincerity of Jesus inviting you to help him in that great harvest? Are you willing to do the mission?
“You are a prophet to the Nations”
(Memorial of Sts. Cyril & Methodius)
The words of Jeremiah son of Hilkiah, one of the priests living at Anathoth in the territory of Benjamin. 2 The word of Yahweh came to him in the days of Josiah son of Amon, king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign; 3 then in the days of Jehoiakim son of Josiah, king of Judah, until the end of the eleventh year of Zedekiah son of Josiah, king of Judah, until the deportation of Jerusalem, in the fifth month. 4 The word of Yahweh came to me, saying: 5 'Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you came to birth I consecrated you; I appointed you as prophet to the nations.' 6 I then said, 'Ah, ah, ah, Lord Yahweh; you see, I do not know how to speak: I am only a child!' 7 But Yahweh replied, 'Do not say, "I am only a child," for you must go to all to whom I send you and say whatever I command you. 8 Do not be afraid of confronting them, for I am with you to rescue you, Yahweh declares.' 9 Then Yahweh stretched out his hand and touched my mouth, and Yahweh said to me: 'There! I have put my words into your mouth. 10 Look, today I have set you over the nations and kingdoms, to uproot and to knock down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.'
Do you see the beauty of the call and choice of God to us to become witnesses of his truth and his justice in this world? Are you aware of his trust in using your life as a witness of his love to others? Are you open to the generosity of God poured out unto you as his disciple?
6th Sunday in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: Leviticus 13:1-2, 44-46
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 32
2nd Reading: 1 Corinthians 10:31-11:1
Gospel: Mark 1:40-45
Weekly Prayer Guidelines
Read this week's guidelines to help you deepen in the Word of God for today.