The Greatest Bargain – Rodney Hart, SJ

Luke 6:17, 20-26, Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time Today’s readings present the Beatitudes as they are found in the Gospel of Luke. Luke, a Gentile convert, addressed his version of the Beatitudes primarily to Gentile converts to Christianity. Luke’s audience was poor. Many were slaves or low-born. Their choice of Christianity only made their situation…

As I am Seen – Mark Aloysius, SJ

Luke 5:1-11, Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time In the chapel of the Jesuit community where I reside, in the Lady Chapel of Campion Hall, there is a mural of the nativity, painted by the botanist Charles Mahoney, which depicts the birth of Jesus set in deep winter in rural England. At first glance we see…

Burnout – Johnny Go, SJ

Luke 5:1-11, Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time I suspect very few people knew it then, but in the last two years that I was running a school, I was also running on empty. For several reasons, I found myself precariously on the brink of a burnout. I had worked too hard and cared too little…

Emptiness – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 5:1-11, Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time Don’t you find it strange that right after a huge catch of fish, Peter suddenly falls on his knees before Jesus and makes a confession: “Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man”? You know, sisters and brothers, in almost all the retreatants I have accompanied…

Never Abandoned – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Mark 6:1-6, Wednesday of Week 4 in Ordinary Time We have a dear, dear lady who works for us, Nancy. She’s by far one of the most industrious people I’ve met in my Jesuit life. She’s in her early 30s, shorter and much thinner than I. But she’s a dynamo. She’s always doing chores. Even…

Wide Open – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 4:21-30, Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time From back in the Lord’s day up to today, the synagogue remains a consecrated place of prayer—Jews worshipped there, of learning—they studied the Torah there, & of social gathering—they came together to discuss religious matters there, too. Here are some rules in Jewish synagogues today. I quote from the “Laws of Synagogue Etiquette” by a Rabbi Eliezer Wenger. “No running around in the synagogue….

Depth – Jett Villarin, SJ

Luke 4:21-30, Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time The weather has been quite cool these days. Some parts of the northern half of the globe are even in deep freeze. The southern half is probably scorching. I have been asked if all this is because of climate change. The short answer is most probably yes, with a quick qualification that weather is…

What Oppresses You? – Francis Alvarez, SJ

[The Spirit of the Lord] has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free… The words spoken by Jesus in our Gospel today are not just for those rotting away in jail cells and not just for those who have lost their eyesight…

Pasa-Load – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 1:1-21, Third Sunday of Ordinary Time A friend of mine is a guidance counsellor for grade school students in one of the schools in Manila. Two years ago, he told a very shocking story. “One of our students just attempted suicide, Father. 10 years old. He actually jumped off the building. But someone caught him just in time and saved him.” 10 years old,…

Consecrate – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 3:15-16; 21-22, The Baptism of the Lord When you “consecrate” something, the idea is to take that something and set it apart from similar things because you would like it to serve a different purpose. To consecrate something is to make it, well, “special,” because now, the purpose it serves is, say, bigger or…

Staying With – John Foley, SJ

Luke 3:15-16; 21-22, The Baptism of the Lord Today marks the last day of the Church’s Christmas season. Jesus’ birth has now been celebrated. His public life comes next. His baptism begins it. I know, I know, Christmas has been over for ages and we have gone on with life. The American custom is in…

Looking Up – Pope Francis

Matthew 2:1-12, Solemnity of the Epiphany But why, we might ask, did the Magi alone see the star? Perhaps because few people raised their eyes to heaven. We often make do with looking at the ground: it’s enough to have our health, a little money and a bit of entertainment. I wonder if we still…