Sunday, October 13, 2013

Today's Mass Readings - Sunday, October 13, 2013 with Reflection

1ST READING - 2 Kings 5:14-17
14 Naaman went down and plunged into the Jordan seven times at the word of Elisha, the man of God. His flesh became again like the flesh of a little child, and he was clean of his leprosy. 15Naaman returned with his whole retinue to the man of God. On his arrival he stood before Elisha and said, “Now I know that there is no God in all the earth, except in Israel. Please accept a gift from your servant.” 16 Elisha replied, “As the Lord lives whom I serve, I will not take it;” and despite Naaman’s urging, he still refused. 17 Naaman said: “If you will not accept, please let me, your servant, have two mule-loads of earth, for I will no longer offer holocaust or sacrifice to any other God except to the Lord.”
P S A L M - Psalm 98:1, 2-3, 3-4
R: The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
Sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done wondrous deeds; his right hand has won victory for him, his holy arm. (R) The Lord has made his salvation known: in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice. He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness toward the house of Israel. (R) All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation by our God. Sing joyfully to the Lord, all you lands; break into song; sing praise. (R)
2ND READING - 2 Timothy 2:8-13
Beloved: Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, a descendant of David: such is my gospel, for which I am suffering, even to the point of chains, like a criminal. But the word of God is not chained. 10 Therefore, I bear with everything for the sake of those who are chosen, so that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus, together with eternal glory. 11This saying is trustworthy: If we have died with him we shall also live with him; 12 if we persevere we shall also reign with him. But if we deny him he will deny us. 13 If we are unfaithful he remains faithful, for he cannot deny himself.
In all circumstances, give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.                              
Luke 17:11-19
11 As Jesus continued his journey to Jerusalem, he traveled through Samaria and Galilee. 12 As he was entering a village, ten lepers met him. They stood at a distance from him 13 and raised their voice, saying, “Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!” 14 And when he saw them, he said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.” As they were going they were cleansed. 15 And one of them, realizing he had been healed, returned, glorifying God in a loud voice; 16and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. He was a Samaritan. 17 Jesus said in reply, “Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? 18 Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?” 19 Then he said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith has saved you.”



One late night, I was driving back to the seminary. During one traffic stop, a little girl approached me, trying to sell me her last strand of sampaguita. I signaled that I didn’t want it but I rolled down the car window and handed her several packs of biscuits (she looked hungry) which I always carry with me for situations like that. She accepted it, and gave me the sweetest smile and said, “Kunin n’yo na rin po itong sampaguita, thank you ko na lang po para sa biscuits.” I obliged and took the sampaguita and drove away, with my eyes a little moist.
       I felt good that I had done a good thing. But I think I felt better that I had allowed the little girl to make an act of gratitude in return for the biscuits I had given her. I saw it in her smile. She felt good being grateful. I received something from her and that made me feel good, too. At that moment, she was not only a recipient; she became a giver, too.
       When we do an act of charity, we are told even in the Bible not to expect something in return. Even so, I don’t think it subtracts from our charity when we accept a genuine act of gratitude. In the Gospel,  Jesus even loudly wonders why only one of the 10 healed lepers came back to give thanks. He asks why the other nine were nowhere to be found. This indicates that God does not need our gratitude, yes, but He sure appreciates it.
        Allowing others to thank us can also be a virtue. When we give, there is still a danger of feeling as being the “superior” one, the “stronger” one. To accept thanks can also be a form of humility, of vulnerability, and of gratitude. Fr. Joel O. Jason
REFLECTION QUESTION: Have you allowed yourself to be weak, by accepting a genuine word or act of gratitude from someone you have helped?
God, You have no need of our praise and yet You still delight in the little acts of worship we can give You. Thank You for allowing us to say “thank You”! Amen.

St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, pray for us.

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