Theme: ‘Stop being stumbling block to yourself and others’
1st Reading: Num 11:25–29
2nd Reading: James 5:1–6
Gospel: Mark 9:38–43,45,47–48
Dear friends in Christ, the readings of today’s liturgy caution us to guard against jealousy, intolerance and giving of scandal. In a special way, Jesus invites us to excise from us anything that will lead us or others to eternal damnation.
At the center of the reflection of today is Jesus’ invitation to his disciples to cut off from themselves anything that will lead them or others to scandal. A little exposition of the etymology of the word ‘scandal’ will…
Theme: WHAT TO ALLOW AND WHAT TO CUT OFF
In the Gospel of today, we saw Jesus at one time encouraging accommodation, which shows itself in the principles of “Egbe bere, ugo bere, “Onye biri ibe ya”, “Onye anwula ma ibe ya efula” “ Ndu mmiri, ndu azu”, “Ukwuru miaram, miara nwunye di m”( Live and let live). At the other end, Jesus tells us the conditions that cannot be accommodated. In His teaching, today, He opposed John the beloved who wanted Him to forbid those who were casting out demons in His name. Jesus says no to…
Theme: LET THESE WORDS SINK INTO YOUR EARS
As all marvelled at everything Jesus did, He told His disciples to allow the word sink.
We marvel at a lot of things these days. We are captivated by different side attractions. We marvel at the beauty of the Church. We marvel at the diction of the preacher. We marvel at the regalia of the people in the Church. We marvel at the musical instruments. People are carried away by the testimonies, true and false alike. Christians are now swept by the ocean of prophesies, signs and wonders. …
Theme: ALONE WITH GOD IN THE COMPANY OF PEOPLE
The Gospel of today started this way: “Now it happened that as Jesus was praying alone the disciples were with him…”
The lonely moments can really be turned into ‘alone with none but God moments’. Jesus feels the longing to be with none but God. He feels the desire to commune with His Father. He wants to plunge into Divine encounter and be lost in the Divine romance.
During the moment of His being alone in prayers He left the distractions of His surrounding behind. He kept aside verbal…
Theme: THE TORMENT OF KILLING
Herod the tetrarch heard of all that Jesus was doing. They were in line with John’s. He was afraid. He recalled that he had succeeded in killing John the Baptist. He questioned: who could be this new man making waves? He wondered who was doing all the wonders, preachings and confrontations he heard about. O jukwara ese? Did he not hear about what happened to John the Baptist? Could it be that the guards deceived him claiming to have killed John whereas he still lives? Has John the Baptist risen from the dead?
Theme: YOU HAVE POWER AND AUTHORITY OVER DEMONS
Jesus Christ today sent His disciples on a missionary journey. He gave them power and authority over all demons, He gave them power to heal, He gave them the power to preach.
In our own mission here on earth, through our baptism, Jesus gives us power over evil spirits. He starts by delivering us from the powers of the evil one and transferring us to the kingdom of God. That explains why we have the prayer of exorcism during baptism. The mouth of the baptized is equally opened and enabled to preach…
Theme: FOLLOW CHRIST AND LEAVE EVERY OTHER THING
Today we celebrate an evangelist, Matthew. He is also known as Levi. He was called by the Lord Jesus Christ and made a disciple. The Gospel of today according to this same Matthew records the immediate response of Matthew.
Jesus saw him sitting at the tax office, He called him. Immediately Matthew rose and followed him. He left his former office, to take up the office Christ assigned to him. He left his old ways to follow the new way. …
Theme: THAT THOSE WHO ENTER MAY SEE THE LIGHT
Jesus is addressing us as He addressed the crowds today on the need to place the light we possess where it may be seen, where it will shine, where it will give light to those around us. He warns against the act of hiding and covering our lamps after lighting it.
When God came into the world, let there be light! was the first command. A light that darkness cannot stop started ruling the day in the entire universe. The enemy made man, that should be the light bearer…
Theme: The true Path to Greatness
1st Reading: Wisdom 2:12,17–20
2nd Reading: James 3:16–4:3
Gospel: Mark 9:30–37
To have ambitions in life is a wonderful thing. It is always good to aim higher in our undertakings. In fact, God created us to aspire for greater things and to bloom wherever we are planted. However, there are two things that we must beware of: the kind of ambition we entertain and the way we pursue our ambitions. …
Theme: WHAT IS THE MATTER?
It is very obvious that in our various associations, institutions, organization and unions we have conflicts, we have cold wars, we have full blown wars, we have misunderstandings, we have quarrels.
Why can’t we live in peace, why can’t we enjoy harmony, why are we not growing, why are we stunted, why are we spending much of our times, resources and ingenuity foiling, packaging and sponsoring chaos, disunity, banditry, terrorism, agitations, etc?
Why is the Church not where it should be? Why is the government wasting its tenures fighting over frivolities? Why are…