Why Is Faith Hard? – Francis Alvarez, SJ

In our Gospel today, someone asks Jesus, “Lord, will only a few people be saved?” Jesus answers, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I tell you, will attempt to enter but will not be strong enough.” Why does the gate have to be narrow? If God’s arms are always wide open and…

Going Through – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 13:22-30; 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time In our theology classes in Loyola School of Theology, some of my brightest students are those doing their MA while also teaching theology at Ateneo. I really admire them and their work. I can only imagine how difficult it is to teach theology to college people these days,…

Scapegoat – Ron Rolheiser, OMI

Luke 12:49-53, 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time GK Chesterton wrote the following words almost seventy years ago. One of the things that, for him, gave the church credibility is the fact that, invariably, it is surrounded by a halo of hatred! And there shone on them in that dark hour a light that has never…

Assumptions – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 1:39-56, The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Our Gospel today has two distinct parts. Look how interesting it is. The first part, Elizabeth’s, is filled with second-person pronouns. “Blessed are you among women…and the fruit of your womb. How wonderful that (you,) the mother of my Lord should come to me! When I heard you greet me, my baby leaped in me. Blessed are you who believed what the Lord told you!” Elizabeth showers…

Life’s Key Question – Ron Rolheiser, OMI

Luke 12:32-48, 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time Several years ago, at retreat, an elderly monk shared with me about the ups and downs of 50 years of monastic life. At the end of this he said to me: “Give me some hints on how I should prepare to die! What should I do to make…

Ready – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 12:32-48; 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time Two dear friends of mine were recently diagnosed with cancer. So, I went to Quiapo Church last Monday. One of three reasons I attend mass there is to bring before God desperate petitions people ask me to help them pray for, like this one. I certainly could’ve just…

The Poor Rich Fool – Vids Gornez, SJ

Luke 12:13-21, 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time In our Gospel reading, we are presented with a parable and in it the picture of a man consumed not by heavenly treasures but worldly ones. This man busies himself gathering treasures and harvests in his barn more than enough to meet his present needs and he is…

Rich – Jett Villarin, SJ

Luke 12:13-21, 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time In the eyes of the world, one becomes rich by getting. In the eyes of God, one gets rich by giving. The question then of our life’s richness depends on whose eye matters to us more: the world’s or God’s? If God does not matter to us, we…

Invest in Things that Last – Rev Fr Harold Parilla

Luke 12:13-21, 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time If you are a pessimist, you will find the First Reading quite affirming. It says, “Vanity of vanities, all things are vanity”. Vanity here does not mean preoccupation for external glamour. It refers to the fleeting quality of everything under the sun. It is to say there is…

Vows – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Matthew 13:54-58, on the occasion of the Profession of Perpetual First Vows of Jesuit Novices Jaclay, Masaya, Renier, Paulus, and Giovanni Mang Tino is our longest-staying and most cheerful sikyo. He always says, “Salamat po. Good morning, salamat. Good afternoon, salamat po. Salamat.” Two years ago, on a retreat, I spent some time again with…

Dare You Ask For The Spirit? – Francis Alvarez, SJ

“Ask and you will receive,” Jesus promises us in our Gospel today. But let’s be real and go deeper: How many times have you prayed for a particular favor only to be disappointed? What do you do when you ask but do not receive? The way I used to make sense of the times when…

Love Language – Arnel Aquino, SJ

Luke 10:38-42, 16th Sunday in Ordinary Time If you haven’t read Gary Chapman’s book, I’m sure you’ve nonetheless heard of his “5 love languages.” Chapman is an 81-year-old pastor and spiritual director. After long years of shepherding his flock and counselling married couples, he concluded that from the many ways we express love, we could distill five chief ways of what he calls, “languages,” of loving,namely: (1) giving gifts, (2) spending quality time, (3) saying words of…