Laetare – Arnel Aquino, SJ

John 9:1-41, 4th Sunday of Lent Our Gospel today is bursting with ironies. Maybe it’s just fitting for Laetare Sunday. Because when you look at the story in a more light-hearted way, its ironies can actually bring a faint smile to your face. The man was born blind, so people presumed either he or his…

Miraculous Pool – Johnny Go, SJ

John 9:1-41, 4th Sunday of Lent The healing stories in the Gospel take on new meaning in times like this! Our Lord’s healing of the blind man in today’s Gospel story offers us a much-needed message. This healing miracle, unlike others, did not happen instantaneously. While the other healings of our Lord were achieved with…

Fù bùguò sāndài (富不过三代) – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Matthew 17:1-9, 2nd Sunday of Lent A few years ago, two friends of mine took the whole family to a series of workshops about family businesses. That was new to me: families going on workshops about running the business. “It’s very important these days, Fr Arnel,” my friend said. “Because only twelve percent of family…

I Want Some More – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Matthew 4:1-11; 1st Sunday of Lent If we still think that the story of Adam and Eve literally and historically happened, then we run into many problems. First, if the whole human race came from only two parents, do we presume that their children and their grandchildren had physical relations with each other to eventually…

Up Close and Personal – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Matthew 5:13-16, 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time Kuya and I were painfuly, frustratingly shy when we were young. We couldn’t be asked to go to a store to buy something, or to ride a jeep and sit with strangers, or to help out at mom’s botica because we’d have to talk to customers. One Sunday,…

Kapangyarihan – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Mark 6:7-13, Thursday in the 4th Week of Ordinary Time A few years ago, a good friend of mine — let’s call him Mang Manny — he told me a disturbing story. At his workplace, he witnessed a priest shouting at a co-employee, really skinning him alive. I don’t remember the reason why the priest…

Family Priest – Mark Lopez, SJ

Luke 2:22-40, Feast of the Lord’s Presentation Today’s feast reconnects us to our Jewish ancestors in the faith, through their tradition of offering their first-born son to be the priest of the family. How beautiful that would be for us today – a priest in every family. No, not necessarily the ordained kind. But the…

Being Senior – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 2:22-40, The Presentation of Our Lord A very dear uncle in the US emailed me the other day. He asked if I had some reflections about the Feast of the Presentation. He wanted to share it with his church group. Alas, I told him, I myself always had difficulty writing a homily on the Presentation. Because other than what we just read from Luke this evening, the Gospels make no…

And Yet – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Matthew 4:12-23; 3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time When we were younger Jesuits, we were often asked what it felt to be “called” by God. I turned 54 this month and have been a Jesuit for 30 years; the question has barely come up. Were I ever  to be asked again what it feels to be…

Here I Am, Lord – Ro Atilano, SJ

John 1:29-34, 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time “Here I am, Lord; I come to do Your will.” I used to work for the biggest auditing firm in the country. They say it is the dream of every new certified public accountant. For the experience, as the veterans would say. I applied and got accepted and…

Sense of Place – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Matthew 3:13-17, Baptism of our Lord “I need to be baptized by you and yet you are coming to me?” That’s how I imagine John to have said that. It’s highly unlikely he said it that way, though, with the personal pronouns in italics. But the point is John did not expect Jesus, the Messiah…

Manger – Jett Villarin, SJ

Delivered on 24 December 2019 at the Church of the Gesu, Ateneo de Manila University A little poem I wrote for Christmas is the starting point of our reflections tonight. Let our asking these questions lead us more closely to the Child in the manger.   have we lost the wonder, forgotten whose we are, how love…