Sunday, November 9, 2014

Today's Mass Readings - Sunday, November 9, 2014 with Reflection

1ST READING - Ezekiel 47:1-2, 8-9, 12
Then the angel brought me back to the entrance of the temple, and I the east, for the facade of the temple was toward the east; the water flowed down from the southern side of the temple, south of the altar. He led me outside by the north gate, and around to the outer gate facing the east, where I saw water trickling from the southern side. He said to me, “This water flows into the eastern district down upon the Arabah, and empties into the sea, the salt waters, which it makes fresh. Wherever the river flows, every sort of living creature that can multiply shall live, and there shall be abundant fish, for wherever this water comes the sea shall be made fresh. 12 Along both banks of the river, fruit trees of every kind shall grow; their leaves shall not fade, nor their fruit fail. Every month they shall bear fresh fruit, for they shall be watered by the flow from the sanctuary. Their fruit shall serve for food, and their leaves for medicine.”
P S A L M - Psalm 46:2-3, 5-6, 8-9
R: The waters of the river gladden the city of God, the holy dwelling of the Most High!
1 [2] God is our refuge and our strength, an ever-present help in distress. 2 [3] Therefore we fear not, though the earth be shaken and mountains plunge into the depths of the sea. (R) 4 [5] There is a stream whose runlets gladden the city of God, the holy dwelling of the Most High. 5 [6] God is in its midst; it shall not be disturbed; God will help it at the break of dawn. (R) 7 [8] The Lord of hosts is with us; our stronghold is the God of Jacob. 8 [9] Come! behold the deeds of the Lord, the astounding things he has wrought on earth. (R)
2ND READING - 1 Corinthians 3:9-11, 16-17
Brothers and sisters: You are God’s building. 10 According to the grace of God given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building upon it. But each one must be careful how he builds upon it, 11 for no one can lay a foundation other than the one that is there, namely, Jesus Christ. 16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for the temple of God, which you are, is holy.
I have chosen and consecrated this house, says the Lord, that my name may be there forever.
John 2:13-22
13 Since the Passover of the Jews was near, Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 He found in the temple area those who sold oxen, sheep, and doves, as well as the money-changers seated there.15 He made a whip out of cords and drove them all out of the temple area, with the sheep and oxen, and spilled the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables, 16 and to those who sold doves he said, “Take these out of here, and stop making my Father’s house a marketplace.” 17 His disciples recalled the words of Scripture, “Zeal for your house will consume me.” 18 At this the Jews answered and said to him, “What sign can you show us for doing this?” 19  Jesus answered and said to them, “Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up.” 20 The Jews said, “This temple has been under construction for forty-six years, and you will raise it up in three days?” 21 But he was speaking about the temple of his body. 22Therefore, when he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this, and they came to believe the Scripture and the word Jesus had spoken.


Today we celebrate the feast of the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica in Rome. On its facade is written, “Omnium Urbis et Urbis Ecclesiarum Mater et Caput.” It means “The Mother and Head of All Churches of the City and of the World.” It was designated aptly because it is the cathedral of Rome and the pope’s permanent cathedral stands in its apse. Compared to St. Peter’s Basilica, it is more senior in dignity. So many of the Catholic Church’s significant events happened within the walls of this church.

       There were no churches during the time of the early Christian communities. Whenever they obeyed the command of Jesus to do the Last Supper in His memory, they would select a house and do it with an ordinary table. Later, they selected a table for that purpose. Places of celebration for the Holy Sacrifice also started to proliferate in communities. Later, realizing the need for a sacred place, dedication rites were started.

       Of course we believe that God is everywhere and we can relate with Him at all times. The late Cardinal Sin always loved to relate his experience while on a plane bound for Manila. Seated beside him was a non-Catholic. The man, realizing it was the Archbishop of Manila beside him, asked the Cardinal why Catholics go to church on Sundays when they can worship God anywhere. The Cardinal just smiled and kept silent. Later, the man asked to be excused as he was going to the restroom to pee. The Cardinal then asked why does he bother to go to the restroom. The man said that it was the proper place to pee. Then the cardinal said, “So is our worship. While we believe God is everywhere and we can pray to Him anytime, we still go to church — the proper, designated and accepted place to gather in prayer as a community!”

       It is always good to know that there is a place where we can conveniently pray and interact with our God. Let us strive to give it the dignity, respect, solemnity and honor it deserves. Fr. Benny Tuazon

REFLECTION QUESTION: How do you regard the church?
Lord Jesus, thank You for giving us the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass as a form of communal prayer and worship. Grant us a deeper appreciation of it.

St. Benignus, pray for us.

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