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…

Light – Jett Villarin, SJ

Christmas Eve 2018 I am happy to be here with you, here in the Gesu, in this place of light. These days it has been difficult to sleep. And I know sleep has eluded so many as well. Infants have a way of waking us up, of waking us through the night. This dark episode,…

Like You – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Christmas Eve 2018 It was around this time of night many, many years ago, when I was little—littler—when a very rare electrical storm ripped through Davao City. Lightning and thunder looked and sounded like they were tearing each other apart. They say only thunder makes a sound, lightning doesn’t. But I remember lightning cracking like…

Can You Join The Christmas Movement? – Francis Alvarez, SJ

“Talo ka sa lolo ko….” Not only can jokes of this type make you slap your knee in laughter, they can also make you stroke your chin in thought. This is humor which tickles your funny bone and at the same time, touches something deep inside of you, something raw, something that makes you flinch….

Apocalypse Now – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 21:25-28, 34-36, First Sunday of Advent I have a personal beef with end-of-the-world scenarios, or what we call in theology, apocalypses. When I was growing up in Davao, our elders terrorized us at one time or another with end-of-the-world scenarios – mainly to cow us into submission to their do’s and don’t’s, for us…

Adventisement – Jett Villarin, SJ

Luke 21:25-28, 34-36, First Sunday of Advent Advent is the season of preparation for the celebration of Christmas. We prepare for the coming of Christ into our lives by coloring these days with penitential violet and marking our time with moments of hopeful waiting. Adventus is Latin for “coming”. Even if Christmas comes to us…

Should We Still Hail Kingship? – Francis Alvarez, SJ

In our modern (some would say post-modern, or even post-post-modern) world, when monarchy is mainly for ceremony, does the Feast of Christ the King still have meaning? As we let this and then that fad lord it over our lives, as we bow to fleeting trifles, maybe there is an even greater need to remind…

The End of the World – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Mark 13:24-32, 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time When I was growing up in Davao, it took very little for elders to start talking about the end of the world. When there was an earthquake, a typhoon, a plane crash, war, flood—very soon, mom or lola or manang would sit up anxiously share what they “heard”…

Undivided – Jett Villarin, SJ

Mark 12:28-34, 31st Sunday in Ordinary Time First there were ten commandments. Then over time these multiplied to 600+ laws plus heaven knows how many more implementing rules and regulations and rituals. Just like the mess of information on the internet, these directives often took a life of their own and were confusing. If you…

Pari-seo – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 11:42-46, Wednesday of Week 28 in Ordinary Time Jesus was much kinder to prostitutes and tax collectors than to Pharisees and teachers of the law. Oh, Jesus didn’t condone prostitutes and tax collectors. He socialized with them, yes, but with the intention of turning them around. He couldn’t turn Pharisees around, though. They were…

Fractions – Jett Villarin, SJ

Mark 10:2-16, 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time Fractions are not easy to learn. In kindergarten, we begin with adding numbers that are whole like one, two, three. When we learn subtraction, we learn about negatives and that mysterious number zero. Then on to division, and life becomes complicated with fractions. Like fractions, love is not…