Cold – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Mark 8:27-35, 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time Was Peter so evil that Jesus suddenly called him Satan? Wasn’t he dissuading the Lord from returning to Jerusalem because there, his enemies would do him serious harm? Peter felt so vehemently against Jesus’ plan that the Gospel used quite a strong word: “Peter took Jesus aside and…

The Twelve – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 6:12-19, Tuesday of Week 23 in Ordinary Time When I was with Ateneo Student Catholic Action (AtSCA), oh 500 years ago, we would spend all of a Friday night into lunch of Saturday – and sometimes long into the afternoon – evaluating applicants to our organization. The longer the list, the more eyebag-weekends it…

Access – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Mark 7:, 31-37, 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time I’ve shared this story before but in a different context with a different Gospel. It’s a great anecdote told to me by a Josefino two years ago. As soon as the Uber driver knew that it was a seminarian who hopped into his car, the driver started…

Do’s and Don’ts – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Mark 7:1-23, 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time It happened again last week. I heard from a friend yet another story of a priest who refused to bless the body of a troubled teenager who took his own life. The mother pleaded with the priest desperately and tearfully, my friend said. The young man had always…

Avatar – Arnel Aquino, SJ

John 6:63-68, 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time I was watching a talk show the other night. The host did his usual stand-up comedy routine to open the show. He started out, making jokes about Trump and his addiction to Twitter. Then he joked about people who made the stupid mistake of posting pictures on Facebook…

Communion – Arnel Aquino, SJ

John 6:41-51, 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time My maternal grandfather was an inveterate sabungero. Unlike our lola who went to mass daily, he went to church only on Christmas. The rest of the Sundays, “nagsisimba siya sa sabungan,” his own children joked. Kung sa bagay. In every sabungan (cockfight) was a man called “Kristo.” He…

Signs – Arnel Aquino, SJ

John 6:24-35, 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time I saw something pleasantly strange in the first reading. “The Lord said to Moses,” the reading said, “’I will now rain down bread from heaven for you. Each day the people are to go out and gather their daily portion. In that way, I will test the Israelites…

Lectio Divina – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Mark 5:21-43, 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time Lectio divina, or literally, “holy reading,” is a Benedictine method of prayer. You read a Bible passage slowly. A word/phrase will soon stir feelings or trigger thoughts. When that happens, you stay on that word/phrase, and gently allow yourself to engage the thoughts and feelings it evokes, whether…

Living the Truth – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 1:57-66, 80, Solemnity of the Nativity of St John the Baptist   Sina Fr Zacarias Agatep at Fr Roberto Salac ng mga diosesano, sina Fr Nilo Valerio ng mga SVD, Fr Tulio Favali ng mga PIME, Fr Rosaleo Romano ng mga Redemptorist, at Fr Godofredo Alingal ng mga Heswita, sila noong nakaraang regimen ng…

Possessed – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Mark 3:20-35, Tenth Sunday in Ordinary Time How do we tell if someone is possessed by the devil or having a psychotic breakdown? Dr Steven Waterhouse gives us a simple triage so we could begin to discern the difference. Dr Waterhouse is a pastor, a counselor, and a systematic theologian from Michigan. He works mainly…

Body and Blood – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Mark 14:12-16, 22-26, Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ On weekdays, my 82-year-old dad gets up at 5:30am. After breakfast, he hops on a cab that takes him to the wharf. Then he gets on a bus that rolls onto a ferry that heads for Samal Island where he works in…

Kapwa – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Matthew 28:16-20, Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity Did you read about Pope Francis and Juan Carlos Cruz? Juan is from Chile, a victim of priestly sexual abuse. He’s also gay. For this reason, Cardinal Javier Erraruiz, a papal adviser, said that Juan was not really a victim of sexual abuse because, being gay, Juan…