• Wartakanlah Injil kepada segala makhluk.
    Mrk 16:15

  • 你们往普天下去, 向一切受造物宣传福音
    谷 16:15

  • Everything is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit’s Grace.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • Segala sesuatu menjadi mungkin dalam kekuatan karunia Roh Kudus.
    St. Arnold Janssen

  • 我当传教士不是为主牺牲,而是上主给我的最大恩赐
    圣福若瑟神父

  • Với sức mạnh Ân Huệ của Chúa Thánh Thần, Mọi việc đều có thể được.
    St Arnoldus Janssen

  • Preach the Gospel to the whole creation./Anh em hãy đi khắp tứ phương thiên hạ, loan báo Tin Mừng cho mọi loài thọ tạo
    Mk 16:15

  • There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit.
    1 Cor 12:4

  • And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
    Jn 1:14

  • Let the word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you.
    Col 3:16

  • To proclaim the Good News is the first and greatest act of love of neighbour.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • 传扬天国福音是第一且最大的爱近人行动
    圣杨生•爱诺德神父

  • Có nhiều đặc sủng khác nhau, nhưng chỉ có một Thần Khí/
    1 Cor. 14:4

  • 圣言成了血肉,寄居在我们中间
    若 1:14

  • Ada rupa-rupa karunia, tetapi Roh satu
    1 Kor 12:4

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Friday, 17 August 2018 12:34

20th Week in Ordinary Time - 2018

Written by Fr Elmer Ibarra SVD

20th Sunday in Ordinary Time

John 6:51-58


Fr Elmer Ibarra 150 BestThe movie “Alive” which came out in 1993, featuring John Malcovich and Ethan Hawke, is about the Uruguayan Rugby Team whose plane crashed on the side of the Andes and a lot of their team mates died, together with the pilots and the flight attendants. For several days, they struggled to ration their meagre resources so that they could survive while waiting to be rescued from the mountains. However, the time came when they all ran out of food. Then they thought of doing the unthinkable, to eat the flesh of their dead teammates in order to survive. Their captain reminded them about Jesus in the Eucharist, Jesus gave himself up to be eaten, as his flesh is real food and his blood real drink. So for the next few days, they ate the flesh of their teammates until they were rescued and after a few years, they came back to the crash site to build a memorial for all those who died on that mountain. 

In the gospel for today, Jesus is teaching us that his flesh is real food and his blood real drink. Of course, his listeners were bewildered, if not disgusted about this teaching. They were arguing among themselves about how can this could really happen. And yet, Jesus was clear in his teaching that his flesh is real food and his blood real drink. 

In the course of human history, we remember people in various ways, either for the good that they have done or for the evil they have committed in their selfish ambition. We remember various philosophers like Plato, Aristotle, St Thomas  Aquinas and others because of their writings. We remember Mother Teresa, Florence Nightingale, St Mary Mackillop and others who have given their lives for the service of humanity. We also remember Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin, Pol Pot and others because of the evil that they have done in this world. But what Jesus did to be remembered is something different and that is he gave us his flesh and blood to be as food. 

With that have you ever wondered why Jesus wanted to be remembered that way? If there’s any activity that we’ll always do so that we survive, that is eating. We all know that if we don’t eat for several days or drink for more than three days, most likely we will die. So for us humans, eating and drinking are very essential activities. They are needs that we can’t just do without. Jesus now is going to provide us with food that will not only make us survive but give us eternal life. What an opportunity we have! 

We have a saying that “we are what we eat.” And this is exactly what Jesus wants us to be. Again, ever wondered why Jesus gave us his flesh and blood as food? Aside from providing sustenance for our souls for eternal life, Jesus wanted to be close to us. For Jesus it is not enough that we pray to him, that we have a relationship with him, that we know his life, that we call to him if we need something, for Jesus that is not close enough. He wants to be intimate with us and through eating his flesh and drinking his blood, he becomes a part of us. Now, that’s really becoming intimate. For us, it is so unthinkable how Jesus loves us so much that he wanted to be part of us. For him, it is not enough that he became one of us, now he wants to become a part of us and hopefully we become a part of him. Because the more we consume his body and blood, the more we become like what we eat, the more we become like Christ. Of course, we must also be willing to become Christ to other people as well by loving one another if we want this transformation to be more effective. 

So again as we continue this “Bread of Life” discourse, let us be reminded again of what we consume at Mass every Sunday and every time we go to Mass. It is Jesus himself, his flesh and blood. Why did Jesus want us to consume his body and blood? Because he wants us to be like him and what a wonderful opportunity we have!