I Desire Mercy, Not Sacrifice

God knows how it feels to be so hungry that you begin to chew paper (or anything that meets your eye). Whether we like it or not, there is hunger in our country today; people are ready to do anything to survive. We may want to judge them like the Pharisees who condemned Jesus and his disciples. However, before pointing fingers at anybody, ask yourself: “What have I done to help?”

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United We Stand; Divided We Fall

Apart from the Gentile converts, a large number of those who embraced Christianity were Jews who believed that Jesus was truly the long-awaited Messiah, but those who didn’t believe felt threatened and sought ways to end the spread of Christianity among Jews. However, in their attempt to stop Jews from converting to Christianity in their numbers, the Jewish authorities suffered many setbacks. One of such setbacks was their lack of unity.

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No Matter What, God Will Never Forget You

If you were Jesus and you knew that people were planning to kill you for healing people on a Sabbath, would you continue? Let us be honest. Only Jesus can do this. Only Jesus can take such a risk. This is the nature of God’s love, as the Prophet Isaiah presents in today’s First Reading. It is a love deeper than that of a mother for her nursing child.

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How to Survive in a World of Enemies

Do not think that because you are a good person (one who strives to live righteously), you are free from enemies. It is possible that you are yet to know your enemies, but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. Some of those close to you may just be looking out for opportunities to launch deadly attacks (like the Pharisees who followed Jesus everywhere).

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Free Your Heart from Bitterness and Hatred

Ordinarily, you should assume that when something good happens to you, people should be happy for you. Isn’t it? The bitter truth is that there will always be scribes and Pharisees around us - people who take offence knowing we are happy. They pretend to be our friends, but the moment our status changes (when things improve for us), they show their true colours.

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Do Not Be A Hypocrite

Why is it easy to exercise restraint when others are watching, yet when we are alone (or think no one is watching), we throw caution to the wind? This was the problem of scribes and Pharisees. Jesus told them: “Nothing is hidden that would not be uncovered… even the hairs of your head are all numbered.” Are there things I do in secret that I am ashamed of?

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Cleanse the Inside, Too

In today’s Gospel passage, Jesus likened the Scribes and Pharisees to whitewashed tombs, beautiful from the outside but full of dead men’s bones inside. If people get close to us, would they see something different from what we portray in public?

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Woe to You, Scribes and Pharisees

Sadly, despite the diversity of churches, evil seems to rise in our society. Our real problem is hypocrisy. We are always trying to deceive people when we cannot deceive God.

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Don’t Call Me Father If I Don’t Practice What I Preach

Jesus’s words must never be taken out of context. Jesus is not against the use of titles. No. Jesus is against answering a name that your actions contradict. Don’t call me Father if I am not behaving like one. I don't deserve such titles if I do not practice what I preach. Jesus is against the worship of human beings. If I do what is wrong, be bold enough to call and correct me. Do not say: “Leave him alone. He is next to God.” Jesus says: “Call no man on earth your God. You have only One God who is in heaven!”

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Forgiveness: The Offertory That Pleases God

Today, Jesus wants us to know He is more pleased with our reconciliation with others than our offertories. Just as our gifts to God are expensive, forgiveness is also costly. Forgiving others is painful if the person refuses to admit their fault. However, this pain is worth it because it is pleasing to God.

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United We Stand; Divided We Fall

All these arguments about the Blessed Virgin Mary, the use of images in the church, the number of books in the Bible, etc. etc., what good has it done? You ask if I have given my life to Christ, and I tell you I am a Catholic, the next thing, you start trying to convince me that I will go to hell. You don’t believe in my doctrines, does that stop you from loving me as your fellow Christian? Why this hatred and animosity in our hearts?

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Who Are You When No One Is Looking?

If you really want to know who you are, forget about your titles or what anyone is saying and find out what your actions (especially those you do in secret) are saying about you.

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