I am with you always until the end of this world - Jesus (Matthew 28:20).

Preach the Word in season and out of season reproving, rebuking or advising always with patience and providing instructions (2 Timothy 4:2).

Do not fear, Mary, for God has looked kindly on you. (Luke 1:30)

Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly. - G. K. Chesterton

Forgive my many grammatical and punctuation mistakes :). - mjdasma

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Reflection for April 21, Tuesday of the Third Week of Easter; John 6:30-35

Gospel: John 6:30-35
The crowd said to Jesus: “What sign can you do, that we may see and believe in you? What can you do? Our ancestors ate manna in the desert, as it is written: He gave them bread from heaven to eat.” So Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave the bread from heaven; my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

So they said to Jesus, “Sir, give us this bread always.” Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life;
whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst.”
+ + + + + + +
I’ve been an extra-ordinary minister of the Holy Communion since 1999 and through these years I’ve brought the Body of Christ to the sick. In fact at present there is a middle-aged lady whom I regularly visit every week to give her the Body of Christ.

One common denominator that I’ve noticed with all of them is they all have an aura of peace and calmness ever since they received the Body of Christ. Hard to believe but this is true: Jesus gives them peace, calmness even an extension of their earthly journey by giving of Himself to them through the Sacrament of Holy Communion.  

Except for the one that I regularly visit every week right now they all have died already. They died in peace, they died being nourished by the giver of the Bread of life, Jesus Himself!

Jesus in our gospel tells you: I am the Bread of Life (John 6:35). Do you want to prove this assertion of Jesus? Whenever you attend Holy Mass receive with piety and reverence the bread of life which is Jesus.

Always do this whenever you are at Holy Mass and be docile to the will of Jesus for you and notice the miracle that Jesus will make in your life. Perhaps there would be change in your behaviour from being arrogant you now will become humble. Perhaps a miraculous cure from sickness and so on, all of these courtesy of Jesus the eternal bread of life. – Marino J. Dasmarinas    

Reflection for April 20, Monday of the Third Week of Easter; John 6:22-29

Gospel: John 6:22-29
[After Jesus had fed the five thousand men, his disciples saw him walking on the sea.] The next day, the crowd that remained across the sea saw that there had been only one boat there, and that Jesus had not gone along with his disciples in the boat, but only his disciples had left. Other boats came from Tiberias near the place where they had eaten the bread when the Lord gave thanks. When the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they themselves got into boats and came to Capernaum looking for Jesus. And when they found him across the sea they said to him, “Rabbi, when did you get here?” Jesus answered them and said, “Amen, amen, I say to you, you are looking for me not because you saw signs but because you ate the loaves and were filled. Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him the Father, God, has set his seal.” So they said to him, “What can we do to accomplish the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God,  that you believe in the one he sent.”
+ + + + + + +
Why do you go to church for Mass or why do you pray? Is it for your love of Jesus or for your need of Jesus? Some of us go to church for Holy Mass because of our need for Jesus, some of us pray for the same reason also.

 After our need for Jesus has been address already we now slacken and go back to our old ways. Until such time that we once again encounter humps and bumps in our lives then we again have our need for Jesus.

The people who were following Jesus were looking for Him because they saw how He feed them in the miracle of the loaves and fish. It was not for the love of Jesus that they were looking for Him neither for their desire to join Jesus disciples in their mission of evangelization.

If we look for Jesus let us not look for Him because of our need for Him alone. We look for Him because we love and miss Him. We look for Him because we want to partake of His mission.

 It’s always better to look for Jesus rooted in our love for Him since this love that we have for Him is always comprehensively rewarded by Jesus. – Marino J. Dasmarinas     

Reflection for April 19, Third Sunday of Easter; Luke 24:35-48

Gospel: Luke 24:35-48
The two disciples recounted what had taken place on the way, and how Jesus was made known to them in the breaking of bread.

While they were still speaking about this, he stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.” But they were startled and terrified and thought that they were seeing a ghost. Then he said to them, “Why are you troubled? And why do questions arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me and see, because a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you can see I have.” And as he said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. While they were still incredulous for joy and were amazed, he asked them, “Have you anything here to eat?” they gave him a piece of baked fish; he took it and ate it in front of them.

He said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the law of Moses and in the prophets and psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. And he said to them, “Thus it is written that the Christ would suffer and rise from the dead on the third day and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins, would be preached in his name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.  You are witnesses of these things.”
+ + + + + + +
How would you know that you are witnessing for the risen Christ? You hunger to do the things that Jesus did when He walked for three years in this world. For example, you saw a poor person begging for food and you feel pity for that person which compelled you to give that person something to alleviate his/her hunger.

Or whenever you see a person in need you always feel the drive to help. If you feel these emotions in your heart you are already witnessing for the Risen Christ. He is manifesting Himself through you and you become a living and breathing witness that Jesus has indeed risen! You always witness for Jesus whenever you do acts of mercy and compassion.

Why are you witnessing for Jesus? This is for the reason that you are a follower of Jesus. You witness for Jesus because you want others to know  Jesus also. You witness for Him  because you want Jesus to make a positive impact in their lives also as what Jesus did for you. By your witness others will know Him through you. They will feel Jesus presence and love through you.

In the gospel, the two disciples recalled to their fellow disciples Jesus’ manifestation to them in the breaking of the bread. When you break bread or share your food with the hungry, you do acts of mercy and compassion. When you break bread or  share your food you witness for Jesus and you become the face of Jesus for them.

Do you always witness for Jesus? -  Marino J. Dasmarinas 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Reflection for April 18, Saturday of the Second Week of Easter; John 6:16-21

Gospel: John 6:16-21
When it was evening, the disciples of Jesus went down to the sea, embarked in a boat, and went across the sea to Capernaum. It had already grown dark, and Jesus had not yet come to them. The sea was stirred up because a strong wind was blowing. When they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus walking on the sea and coming near the boat, and they began to be afraid. But he said to them, “It is I. Do not be afraid.” They wanted to take him into the boat, but the boat immediately arrived at the shore to which they were heading.
+ + + + + + +
Where do you go when you are fearful or when there’s an absence of peace in your life? Do you go to Jesus and ask Him to calm you and give you peace? As we continue to live we will be encountering many fears and many of these fears will certainly unsettle us. Yes we worry about these fears yet after a while we also learn to submit everything to Jesus and once we do we already have peace.

While the disciples were on a boat on their way to Capernaum they encountered a strong wind and they were certainly bothered by it. What would have happened if Jesus was with them? Jesus could have told them, keep calm don’t worry for I am with you. But Jesus was not with them so they were all fearful.

Many fears bother us when there’s an absence of Jesus in our life. Why? Because there’s an absence of stability and peace. Even if a person is rich if he/she doesn’t have Jesus there would certainly be absence of peace and calmness.

You will only have peace in your life if you have Jesus, if you don’t have Jesus expect the absence of peace to bother you. Wealth will not give you peace; power will not give you peace only Jesus will give you this elusive peace. – Marino J. Dasmarinas   

Reflection for April 17, Friday of the Second Week of Easter; John 6:1-15

Gospel: John 6:1-15
Jesus went across the Sea of Galilee. A large crowd followed him, because they saw the signs he was performing on the sick. Jesus went up on the mountain, and there he sat down with his disciples. The Jewish feast of Passover was near. When Jesus raised his eyes and saw that a large crowd was coming to him, he said to Philip, “Where can we buy enough food for them to eat?” He said this to test him, because he himself knew what he was going to do. Philip answered him, “Two hundred days’ wages worth of food would not be enough for each of them to have a little.” One of his disciples, Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, said to him, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish; but what good are these for so many?” Jesus said, “Have the people recline.” Now there was a great deal of grass in that place. So the men reclined, about five thousand in number. Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed them to those who were reclining, and also as much of the fish as they wanted. When they had their fill, he said to his disciples, “Gather the fragments left over, so that nothing will be wasted.” So they collected them, and filled twelve wicker baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves that had been more than they could eat. When the people saw the sign he had done, they said, “This is truly the Prophet, the one who is to come into the world.” Since Jesus knew that they were going to come and carry him off to make him king, he withdrew again to the mountain alone.
+ + + + + + +
Do you thirst for the spotlight after you’ve done something important? More often than not it’s yes! We all want to be in the spotlight we want attention and honor given to us. But how did Jesus handle Himself after miraculously feeding the five thousand who were following them?  Jesus simply walked away from them all and went to the mountain to be alone with God.

Jesus was supposed to be proclaimed king by those He fed. But Jesus did not want that kind of worldly honor what was important for Jesus was He did what He is expected to do. Jesus is so unlike with all of us, we who always thirst for honor and recognition. Are we not thirsty for honor and recognition? Yes we thirst for it!

By His action of avoidance of recognition and honor Jesus is teaching us humility. He is teaching us that after we have done our part for the greater glory of God it’s time to move on. It’s time to silently evaporate from the prying eyes of the crowd and be alone with God so that God could strengthen us and make us more humble.

Let us not look for the spotlight when we serve God or when we do things for God. Let us be content to silently fade away and let the goodness of God create a lasting impression in the hearts of those that we serve.  

Authentic service for God and His people is always achieved with humility and never with the desire to be in the limelight or spotlight. – Marino J. Dasmarinas     

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Reflection for April 16, Thursday of the Second Week of Easter; John 3:31-36

Gospel: John 3:31-36
The one who comes from above is above all. The one who is of the earth is earthly and speaks of earthly things. But the one who comes from heaven is above all. He testifies to what he has seen and heard, but no one accepts his testimony. Whoever does accept his testimony certifies that God is trustworthy. For the one whom God sent speaks the words of God. He does not ration his gift of the Spirit. The Father loves the Son and has given everything over to him. Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever disobeys the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God remains upon him.
+ + + + + + +
What will happen to you if you detach yourself from Jesus? You become a citizen of this world everything that you do in this world is anchored in this finite world alone. Many people live for this world alone they think that there’s no God and there’s no heaven.

So when trials or problems comes along their way they have no other recourse but to solve their trials based on what this world has taught them to do. And when they are not able to solve their trials they begin to lose hope in this world and in themselves as well and it seems that it is the end of the world for them already.  

What would happen to you if you have Jesus in your life? You will be full of hope even if the situation around you seems hopeless. This is the great difference of having Jesus in your life; you will be full of hope and you will see things differently. As opposed to someone who doesn’t have Jesus in his/her life.

In our gospel for this Thursday it says: Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever disobeys the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God remains upon him.

The choice is ours to take, if we will allow Jesus to come into our lives or we will continue to shut the doors of our hearts to Jesus.  – Marino J. Dasmarinas

Reflection for April 15, Wednesday of the Second Week of Easter; John 3:16-21

Gospel: John 3:16-21
God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him will not be condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the only-begotten Son of God. And this is the verdict, that the light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, so that his works might not be exposed. But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God.
+ + + + + + +
What would happen to us if we will not embrace the teachings of God? We will have miserable lives in this world. Almost all of humanity knows that there is God yet we don’t embrace the teachings of God. We prefer to embrace the teachings of this world rather than God.

 We prefer to enjoy life without God rather than life with God. Why? Is this because God creates rules and limits on how we live our lives? Many of us don’t want our freedom to be curtailed. But there are limits to freedom especially the freedom to commit sin.

God always want us not to commit sin. Because the moment we commit sin we envelope ourselves in darkness and darkness is the absence of the light of God.  Just imagine a life in darkness, it’s a life without hope and this is precisely what the devil gives to us.

But no sinner is beyond reach of the love of God for God always offer to us His hand of forgiveness. This forgiveness is for our benefit but do we take advantage of this great forgiveness of God?   

God loves us dearly that He gave us Jesus to save us from all of our sinfulness yet we don’t embrace God we put aside Jesus in favor of this world. Let us not put Jesus aside and tell Him that we will first enjoy life in this world before we go to Him. For it may be too late already.

Let embrace God now let us open our life to Him now and let us start to walk away from our sinfulness now while we still have the luxury of time. – Marino J. Dasmarinas