Tuesday, July 7, 2009



Title: Woe to me if I do not Preach the Gospel


Spreading the Gospel is every Christian’s Primary Mission.

Today 5th Sunday in ordinary time, two weeks from now we will enter again into another season of our liturgical calendar, the Lenten Season, St. Paul in our second reading has a very powerful message as well as a timely reminder for all of us – “Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel”. Our Good Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI, when he opened the present year as the Year of St. Paul, he gave us a frightening picture of what our present world is all about. According to him the world today is continuing to make the same mistake that the world has been making for the last two hundred years, too many of our cultural, political, and economic leaders are trying to build a stable, just, and prosperous global society without acknowledging our dependence on God, this is what is called secularism. It is a perennial temptation for every individual and society, and many of last century's tragedies flowed from falling into it. The injustices of Communism, the destruction of two World Wars, the genocides and massacres flaring up on every continent. These resulted from human societies trying to build themselves up without building on the solid foundation of faith in and obedience to Christ and his teachings, the God of wisdom, mercy, and peace. To combat this problem of Secularism the Pope is asking us to be faithful to our Primary Mission as baptized Catholics – spread the Gospel to every nation.

  1. On becoming Commercials for God

Every one of us is an advertisement for Christ.

Remember last Sunday, super bowl, many of us anticipate the commercials. I like the Doritos one.

As Catholics, we have identified ourselves with Christ and his Church. And so, people who are outside the Church look at us to get an idea of what Christ is like. We are like walking commercials for them.

What kind of commercial will I be?

If we gossip, criticize, and talk trash just as much as everyone else, if we live pleasure-seeking, self-indulgent lives, getting drunk and sleeping around just like everyone else, if we look out for vanity and selfishness instead of looking out for our neighbor, if we lie, cheat, cut others down, and manipulate, just like everyone else, well then, is it any mystery why people who know that we are Christ's followers don't decide to follow Christ themselves?

But if they see us walking away from gossip sessions and defending people's reputations, if they see us living balanced, well-ordered and joyfully disciplined lives, if they see us as compassionate, forgiving, and yet firm in our moral commitments, if they see us trying to swim against the current of the corrupt, ego-centric culture that is tearing society apart, well, then, in that case, they will be drawn towards Christ, not pushed away from him.

  1. On becoming Miracles for Others – Bearers of Good News.

Not to be pessimistic, but look what is happening around us today, one powerful way of spreading the good news is to become miracle for others.


The greatest Source of Joy.

One reason that we often put this mission of the spreading the gospel is that we think it will bring us sadness instead of joy.

But this is a deception of the devil.

We all know from experience that the greatest joys in life come from making other people happy. Just think about the exchange of Christmas gifts. We enjoy receiving gifts, but our attention is much more drawn to seeing someone we care about picking up the present that we prepared and wrapped especially for them. Our emotions run high as they look and wonder what it contains. The suspense builds as they start to open it. We hold our breath...And then the box-top comes off, they see the gift we picked out just for them, their face lights up, and our heart overflows with joy, because our gift has made them happy.

If you want a concrete example try give me a gift card hehehe.

Christmas season is way way way over, but the calling to be generous in spreading the good news is a 24/7 job for every Catholics.

Be commercials for God, be a miracle for others. Spread the Good news. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel.

Why does Jesus tell the apostles to "travel light" with little or no provision at all?

  1. Divine providence – is not about not taking care of your self and be miserable for the rest of your life, this is more of “whole hearted trust in the Lord”. Come to me all you who are weary and I will give you rest. St. Augustine – My heart is restless until it rests in thee. The Lord wants his disciples to be dependent on him and not on themselves.
  2. "Poverty of spirit" frees us from greed and preoccupation with possessions and makes ample room for God's provision. Distinguishing what you need and what you want. Consumerism speaks of what we want – injustice for others who don’t even have what they need.
How’s your baggage? Do you have excess spiritual baggage? Imagine the confessional as a trash bin of excess spiritual baggages.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Dedication of St. John Lateran Basilica in Rome
November 8, 2008

Today we celebrate the dedication of the Basilica of St. John Lateran in Rome, which took place in 324 AD, 1,684 years ago.  This Basilica was the first permanent public place of worship for Christians in the world.  It was built 300 years after the death of Jesus because until that time the power and might of the Roman Empire was determined to utterly destroy the Christian Religion.  first Christian refused to worship the the pagan gods, and so they were considered the enemy of the state.  They were arrested, imprisoned, tortured and cruelly executed when they wouldn't burn incense to Caesar.  Waves of violent persecution  crashed against the church for 300 years, creating a steady stream of martyrs.  only when emperor Constantine legalized christianity in 312 was the church free to breath a sigh of relief, and with that breath, they built the Lateran Basilica.  Ever since, it has been a symbol of that first great victory of the Church, which showed the whole world that this new temple, the mystical body of Christ, was indestructible.

Three points.

1. We are the Church
2. Church as the house of God
3. The church us Indestructible

The most concrete example of church is the family...our domestic churches.  The church symbolizes unity..us being one.  The family is being attack at all sides, no matter what, the family will always be victorious because it is the Mystical body of Christ.

Dios te Bendiga

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Kamatayan at Purgatoryo

Homily inspired by epriest.com resources
November 2, 2008
All Souls Day
31st Sunday In Ordinary Time
6:45 am and 5:00 pm Mass St. Joachim's Catholic Church Madera, CA


Yesterday, All Saints Day we praised God for His masterpieces: The saints, those Christians who reach spiritual maturity in this life, and so entered heaven immediately after death.

Today the world's one billion catholics are joining together to pray for the eternal repose of the souls of our many brothers and sisters who died in friendship with Christ, but who hadn't yet reached spiritual maturity.

Two points:
1. Death
2. Purgatory

Illustration:  A Pastor passionately preached in one of his homilies in his parish; Someday every member of this parish will die! Everyone in the congregation was stunned except one man who started laughing and yelled back, "I don't belong to this parish".

- Human Mortality rate is still at steady 100%
- We will all die
- we are all afraid of dying, ironically speaking this is the surest way to meet God.
-Jesus in the Gospels talked about the four last things: Death, Judgement, Heaven and Hell

If we die in Friendship with Him, we will spend eternity with Him in heaven, though we need to pass through Purgatory, first; to cleanse any left over selfish tendencies that didn't get purified during our earthly life.


- God's spiritual Hospital, purification stage, purifying and healing all the wounds cause by sins we committed here on earth.

Through our PRAYERS, the militant church, we are speeding up that painful process and hastening our departed brothers and sisters full entrance into heaven, this is the main reason why we have the exciting and rich tradition whom we call All Saints Day, Dia de los Muertos for our Hispanic brethren, and Araw ng mga Patay for us Filipinos and the list goes on and on.

All Christians believe in four last things but not all Christians like us Catholics believe in Purgatory let me convince you my dear brothers and sisters.


1. common sense - there's no selfishness in heaven, God is pure love, unselfish, we die completely not free of selfishness and so we need to be clean-up, where purgatory enters into the picture, purgatio-cleansing, purifying.

2. History speaks clearly - Christians prayed for the dead since the very first century.  Catacomb's markings will testify on that. 190 AD there was this special request made by Abercius written on his tomb to please pray for him, St. Augustine's mother and St. John Chrisostom did the same.  Praying for the dead is not an invention, in fact NOT PRAYING FOR THE DEAD is the invention by Martin Luther in 1500 when he led a revolt against the Catholic Church.

3. Bible don't Lie - although the word itself doesn't appear, various passages are interpreted for it.  Mt. 5:26 and Lk. 12:59 speak of sinners being kept until they paid the last penny - purification. 1 Cor. 3:15 St. Paul says that some people will be saved but only "as through fire"
and in Maccabees 12: 14-45 speaks of Praises offering prayers for the dead.


Death is real, that purification after death exists whom we believe as Purgatory and this involves some kind of pain but assisted by our PRAYERS we can hasten their entry into God's kingdom.

Why wait for the purgatory if we can purify ourselves here on earth, our sufferings here on earth makes us unselfish and worthy to inherit the kingdom of God.

Dios te Bendiga

Monday, October 27, 2008


Pansin ko lang lahat dito sa Amerika Organisado as in sobrang organisado....ang batas lalo na ang batas trapiko, ang mga manners ng mga tao, pag nagpatakbo sila ng event, pag nag apply ka for services sa government as in lahat ok, pati yung oras nila sobrang organisado sa november first law dito sa california na magbabawas ng isang oras kasi ala syete na nang umaga ang dilim dilim pa kaya simultaneous yon lahat magbabawas, tapos lahat by appointment...as in sobrang organisado kaso lang eto ka..........kung lahat lahat dito organisado isa lang ang hindi organisado.....ANG PAMILYA.

Lahat ng amerikanong sinabihan ko nito isa lang ang reaction.....your damn right father!!!

haaayyy nung isang araw may isang case dito yung kuya kagagaling lang ng iraq dala pa sa bahay yung service assault riple nya tapos nagkaroon lang ng konting mis understanding tungkol sa celfon....as in tungkol sa celfon......ayon binaril yung kapatid....dead! as in dead.

eto mas matindi wag na lang ipagkakalat.....at warning not for minors....gabayan ang mga batang magbabasa.....may isang nanay nagselos sa baby dahil yung tatay eh puro na lang sa baby yung attention......yon isang araw umuwi si tatay sa bahay at dinatnan si mommy na may nilutong napakasarap na putahe at eto ka ang putahe...si baby as in si baby na pinagseselosan nya ay inilagay sa microwave at syang inihain kay daddy.....sabi ni daddy...wow...delicious what is this.....sabi ni mommy...your favorite baby......pagkatapos ang nangyari si daddy eh nasiraan ng bait tapos si mommy eh of course nakulong ang hatol eh life imprisonment without the possibility of parole haaaaayyyyyy 

kaya lessons:
1. napakahalaga ng buo ang pamilya...na organisado ang pamilya
2. sa pamilya nagmumula ang karanasan ng unang simbahan....domestic church
3. patuloy nating ipagdasal ang kasagraduhan ng pamilya at labanan ang mga sumisira dito....amen??? amen!!!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Unconditional Love

Matthew 22, 34-40
30th Sunday In Ordinary Time
October 26, 2008

for: 9 am mass at St. Anne's Chapel at Raymond's and 6:30 pm Spanish Mass at St. Joachim's Madera, CA
note: partly inspired by Fr. Gerry Orbos, SVD homily column in the PDI

A scene from a marriage counseling session with a Priest.

Priest: So, may I know your names and where do you live.
Husband: Yes Father, this is my wife Lupita and she is my Calvary.
Wife: Yes Father, this is my husband Joe and he is my Purgatory.
Husband and Wife: And we live in hell, you know "go to hell" "what the hell is that?"

In today's Gospel, Jesus sums up all the commandments into two: Love of God and Love of neighbor.  With Love we can overcome all our calvaries and purgatories and we can get out of hell.

Two Points:

According to a latest research there are three things inside our head, three things that we think always, three things that make our world goes around.  Money, money, money.

Money is very superficial; the happiness that we will get from money in a blink of an eye disappears.  We may have all the latest gadgets in the world, the hottest car, the coziest home, the coolest cell phone and everything but just after a few months they are not hot, cozy and cool anymore.  Love makes the world goes around, maybe not as fast as the way money makes it, but slowly and surely.  Love is eternal.

We like people with lots of money, but the moment they loose their money, we don't love them anymore.  Our catholic values and virtues tells us that we value more people who are willing to sacrifice for others, people who are willing to go the extra mile, people who stand up for what they believe is true, people who continues to do what is noble and right while the rest are doing the opposite, people who are willing to stand up and will guard the sanctity of marriage that come election time will vote Yes on Proposition 8.

These are the kinds of people who are willing to love and to make their world goes around happy and contented, slowly but surely.  The world is not a hopeless situation after all.

People who are still willing to love are everywhere, and we are all here every Sunday, some of us everyday, telling the Lord we love Him more than anyone else.  When money dwindles, we panic.  All the more if love dwindles.  90% who jumped at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco committed suicide not because they don't have money but because they don't feel loved.


Mother Theresa once said: "It's not what you do in life, but how much love you put into it that matters."

We can be the greatest person in the world in terms of power, possession and position but if we don't put love into the equation everything will be futile.  Power without responsibility, Possession without Christian Stewardship and Position without Accountability will be of service to oneself and not for the greater glory and greater love of God and neighbor.

Most of the time we love because we expect something in return and this is human nature. The Law of Reciprocity. Giving without getting anything in return is vague for us.  Every time we love, we expect love in return.  Yes, this is true because the culture we are living in right now promotes radical individualism.  We are told to think of ourselves first, and to act always in our own best interest.  Jesus' challenge of loving God and loving our neighbor contradicts radical individualism.  Yes we need to love ourselves, but it must not end in that situation.  The calling is loud and clear that we also need to love our neighbors like we love ourselves.

Jesus showed us the true meaning of loving when he died on the cross for our sins and for our salvation.  The ultimate expression of Unconditional Love.

So the question is, what is the greatest expression of Love?  Jesus Christ dying on the cross, his unconditional love for the Father and the Father's unconditional Love for us.

Let me end this sharing on a personal note.

A friend of mine a couple of years ago found out that the baby she was carrying in her womb is not normal.  The doctor suggested many things for the baby including abortion. My friend asks me what to do?

If you will be asked my dear brothers and sisters what will you say?

I told her, love is all about sacrifice, love is all about giving life and love is all unconditional no matter what.  She kept the baby.

May this Sunday and the rest of our days be an assurance that as God loves us unconditionally we will also love him unconditionally and our neighbors as well.

Dios te bendiga!

Friday, October 24, 2008

sa wakas.......

sa wakas nakapasa din hehehe....

ang sarap talaga pag pinag hirapan mo, there is no such thing as free lunch here in america.

sa pilipinas nung nag apply ako ng drivers license....ganito ang mga pangyayari.

punta ako sa officer in charge of course todo porma ng pampari, success agad kasi nahalata agad ni manong na pari ako so ang mga sumunod na pangyayari ay di ko na ikinagulat.....ang sabi ni manong  "uuuyyy father, mag aaply po ba kayo ng driver's license.....ang sagot ko naman...with pabanal effect...."opo po sana kaso nalilito po ako kung papa-ano" ang sagot ni manong, "nako father wag kayong mag alala, at napakadali lang, upo kayo dito father" upo naman ang pari sabay sabi...."nako Sir, nakakahiya naman at ang daming nakapila sa labas"....sagot ni sir, nako father ok lang yan pari naman kayo.......dyaaaarrrrraaaannn....walang ilang minuto may license na ko hehehehe!!!! big time.

ganito naman ang mga pangyayari dito sa amerika.....

hanap sa internet ang DMV, department of motor vehicle! ok one click tapos set ng appointment, ayos din one click then print ng appointment.   Araw ng pag aaply....kontodo bihis ulit ako ng pampari.....pagdating sa DMV.....wa-epek ang damit na pang pari....parang walang nakahalata.....meron pala...masama ang tingin nung iba kasi ang mga pari dito sa amerika ang tingin ng iba eh mga rapist, child molester at sex addict.  So, pila si Father Rafael......parang wala lang di na lang sana nakapag damit ng pari hehehehe...then sa pila kuha ng number....tapos intay bago matawag...tapos punta sa window....tapos investigation ba? daming tanong....daming hinihinging papeles tapos daming verification....haaaayyy nako tapos...tinanong pa kung bakit father, anong ibig sabihin ng priest......anong ginagawa sa america haaaaayyyyyyy.....ok then bayad di nakalibre..........then kuha ng exam....then are ke....BAGSAK! 

sa exam 1-36 dapat 6 and below lang ang mistakes....sa unang exam ang mistakes ko eh 9....so sabi ko sa sarili ko, 9......3 right answers lang pwede na...so sabi ko sa amerikana sa table....pa slang effect...can i take another exam....sabi ng amerikana sure you have three chances.   Ok.

so kuha naman ako ng exam....ayon to make the story short...bagsak na ulit...tapos ito pa ang masakit.....11 mistakes naman ngayon nadagdagan pa....haaayyyy so sabi ko sa amerikana....I think I need to study first.......ok we have over there a free manual....so kuha ako sabay uwi ng masama ang loob huhuhuhuhuh.

pag kalipas ng isang buwan.........pagkatapos gumana ang "pilipino connections", pagkatapos magsunog ng kilay sa pag aaral ng manual at mga test papers na galing sa mga pinoy, kasama na rin yung mga kanin at tuyo at adobo na kasama ng mga test papers.....kanina kumuha ulit ako ng exam....kabado pa rin at di na naka damit na pampari at wah effect din.....sabi sa akin ng amerikana.....whooooooo no mistakes at all 36/36......haaaayyyyy sa wakas.....tapos set nang appointment para sa hands-on naman, actual driving exam na.......ok ibang kwento na ulit ito...abangan na lang.

ito mga natutunan ko:
1. there is no such thing as free lunch dito sa amerika
2. lahat dito pantay pantay pwera na lang kung girlfriend mo si paris hilton o boyfriend mo si kobe bryant...pwede rito kasi pwede same sex marriage hehehe
3. ang sarap ng pakiramdam dahil pinaghirapan ko yung exam
4. si Lord talaga eh very good in giving second chances...third...4th...5th
5. kailangan kong mag practice ng actual driving kasi kabaliktaran lahat ng natutunan ko sa pilipinas

ok geh geh pagdasal nyo ko para makapasa ko sa actual driving exam dios te bendiga!