Sunday, October 12, 2014

Today's Mass Readings - Sunday, October 12, 2014 with Reflection

1ST READING - Isaiah 25:6-10
On this mountain the Lord of hosts will provide for all peoples a feast of rich food and choice wines, juicy, rich food and pure, choice wines. On this mountain he will destroy the veil that veils all peoples, the web that is woven over all nations; he will destroy death forever. The Lord God will wipe away the tears from every face; the reproach of his people he will remove from the whole earth; for the Lord has spoken. On that day it will be said: “Behold our God, to whom we looked to save us! This is the Lord for whom we looked; let us rejoice and be glad that he has saved us!” 10 For the hand of the Lord will rest on this mountain.
P S A L M - Psalm 23:1-3, 3-4, 5, 6
R: I shall live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. In verdant pastures he gives me repose; beside restful waters he leads me; he refreshes my soul. (R) He guides me in right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk in the dark valley I fear no evil; for you are at my side with your rod and your staff that give me courage.(R) You spread the table before me in the sight of my foes; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. (R) Only goodness and kindness follow me all the days of my life; and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord for years to come. (R)
2ND READING  - Philippians 4:12-14, 19-20
12 Brothers and sisters: I know how to live in humble circumstances; I know also how to live with abundance. In every circumstance and in all things I have learned the secret of being well fed and of going hungry, of living in abundance and of being in need. 13 I can do all things in him who strengthens me. 14 Still, it was kind of you to share in my distress. 19 My God will fully supply whatever you need, in accord with his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. 20 To our God and Father, glory forever and ever. Amen.
May the Father of Our Lord Jesus Christ enlighten the eyes of our hearts, so that we may know what is the hope that belongs to our call.
Matthew 22:1-14
Jesus again in reply spoke to them in parables, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be likened to a king who gave a wedding feast for his son. He dispatched his servants to summon the invited guests to the feast, but they refused to come. A second time he sent other servants, saying, ‘Tell those invited: “Behold, I have prepared my banquet, my calves and fattened cattle are killed, and everything is ready; come to the feast.’” Some ignored the invitation and went away, one to his farm, another to his business. The rest laid hold of his servants, mistreated them, and killed them. The king was enraged and sent his troops, destroyed those murderers, and burned their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The feast is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy to come. Go out, therefore, into the main roads and invite to the feast whomever you find.’ 10 The servants went out into the streets and gathered all they found, bad and good alike, and the hall was filled with guests. 11 But when the king came in to meet the guests he saw a man there not dressed in a wedding garment. 12 He said to him, ‘My friend, how is it that you came in here without a wedding garment?’ But he was reduced to silence. 13 Then the king said to his attendants, ‘Bind his hands and feet, and cast him into the darkness outside, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.’ 14 Many are invited, but few are chosen.”


Mystic mountains are a common object of belief and awe for many. In the Bible, we have Mt. Sinai where the encounter between God and Moses took place. Even local folks around Banahaw think their mountain is sacred.

         Mountains have to do with physical heights, first of all. Since in the Bible, God dwelt in the heavens, the closest place to God would be the mountain, figuratively speaking. Isaiah talks of this mountain in relation to a feast of “rich food and new wines,” an image of the joys with God in heaven.
         But there seems to be a clash of images in the first two readings today. St. Paul talks about the lows — living in humble circumstances, going hungry, being in need — which are the exact opposite of living in abundance. Called to be an Apostle, he knew firsthand how to also live in want and “to do all things in him who strengthens [him].”

          All of us want to go up higher in every conceivable way. We all want to be promoted and rise higher in respectability. Some of us get catapulted to heights of authority and power, whether deserving or otherwise.

         But while we all are worthy of fixing our gaze up on the mountain from where shall come our help, while we all are called to one day be part of those who would partake of the rich food and new wines in our heavenly abode, we are all called, too, to fathom the depths of selflessness and humility.

         We had a great example of this early last year in the person of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. He surprised us when he announced he would renounce the office, “for the good of the Church.” No matter what secular biased media said then, I agree with Scott Hahn who wrote: “It seems to me this might be, for him, the most humble and obedient act of service that he can render in his own conscience.” Though in an august position of power for eight years, which he did faithfully and well, he came down and showed what being a real servant is all about. Fr. Chito Dimaranan, SDB
REFLECTION QUESTION: What type of a mountain are you on?
Teach me to be more humble, Lord, so that I might reach You.

Our Lady of Pillar, pray for us.

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