01 November, Tuesday
Readings: Rev7:2-4, 9-14; 1 Jn 3:1-3; Mt 5:1-12
Solemnity: All Saints
Today, we celebrate the solemnity of all the saints; it is to look at those who already have the inheritance of eternal glory. They are those who wanted to live the grace of adopted sons, who left to the mercy of the Father giving life every moment of their lives, every fibre of their hearts. The Saints contemplate the face of God and rejoice full of this vision. They are the brothers that the Church offers us as models because, sinners like everyone, they all agreed to being encountered by Jesus, through their desires, their weaknesses, their suffering, and also their sorrows. This bliss that gives them their share in the life of the Holy Trinity is a result of overabundance that the blood of Christ has purchased. Despite the nights, through constant purifications that love requires to be true love, and sometimes beyond all human hope, they all wanted to burn themselves in love and disappear so that Jesus was gradually everything in them. It is Mary, Queen of all Saints, who tirelessly brought them to this way of poverty, it is after her that they have learned to get around as a free gift of the Son; It is with her that they currently live, and in the Father’s bosom.
02 November, Wednesday
Readings: Isa 25:6-9; Rom 5:5-11; Lk 7:11-17
Commemoration of all the Faithful Departed
For us Christians, death is the eternal transit that is the true birth, that for all eternity we celebrate once and forever the day when the Lord calls us to be part of his eternal Kingdom in the holy Paradise. Today, on the annual commemoration of All the Faithful Departed, we as believers reflect on the meaning of life, rather than on the meaning of death, because death, despite being a biological fact, natural, actually it is not about the human being, because, according to the spiritual and immortal soul, one is not subject to eternal death and if one goes through bodily death there is also a final resurrection. In short, death is not the last act of an individual human and personal history, but the beginning of a new life, the life of communion with God. And we in this day of reflection and prayer for our dead brothers , those closest to us by bonds of affection and of blood, to those unknown and forgotten by all, we praise the Lord who has opened, through his death on the Cross and resurrection the gap to a blessed eternity. Today we celebrate our Passover, one of the true passages from death to life.
03 November, Thursday
Readings: Phil 3:3-8; Lk 15:1-10
It is not easy today to recognize the need of conversion. The education and catechesis give it a try. The invitation to conversion is indirectly launched since the shepherds are afraid that churches are even more deserted. Even in our private lives, often, we close our eyes to the mistakes of the brothers, because we do not want to risk losing them. The illusion of not guilty imprisons Christians also. But approve or excuse goes against the whole biblical tradition, beginning with the Old Testament prophets to the preaching of the last apostle. But that is not all: this pastoral trend has not a realistic spiritual support or a basis in catechesis. It is rare that man is happy as when she responds to the conversion. “Neither do I condemn you, go and from now on sin no more” (Jn 8:11). What could give us a deeper joy of the return to the Father who loves us, who is already waiting for us and gives us his forgiveness without asking anything in return? If the sense of sin and conversion tends to disappear altogether from the pastoral messages, you have to search for the reason in the society around us, which is turned away from God. Only those who are touched by the majesty and holiness of God become conscious of sin, in oneself and in others. The conversion then becomes key word, not only because it allows men a foretaste of eternal happiness, but also because God rejoices. When Jesus speaks of ‘heaven’ (Lk 15:7), actually he alludes to God. And in the court of heaven (Lk 15:10) pours a joy to know that many Christians do not know the intensity and depth. This Gospel passage is really good news. Who does not forget about it, can never lose hope, in whatever situation! And this good news will encourage more men to follow Jesus to the lost sheep to announce the mercy of God so that God will have joy.
04 November, Friday
Readings: Phil 3:17-4:1; Lk 16:1-8
Memoria: St. Charles Borromeo, Bishop
A good shepherd is an excellent gift to the Church; like St. Charles Borromeo has been for the Church of Milan. Consecrated bishop at the age of 25, this young man, who lived in ease and in honor of his rank, he gave his all to the service of his people, lavishing wealth and health by supporting efforts and extreme penance, which will certainly shortened life. He advocated with energy and patience the application of the Council of Trent, with the constant concern to train holy and zealous priests. The love of Jesus crucified was for him the model and continuous encouragement. He was the man of prayer, of tears, of penance understood not as heroic work but as mysterious participation, passionate in the sufferings of Christ, on coming into the sin of the world, almost to the heart burst and division soul. Today we pray in a special way for our pope, true good shepherd fearless and heedless of himself, which multiplies the trips, speeches, that welcomes everyone, announcing with courage and frankness the truth of the Gospel in every situation and at every point in the world.
05 November, Saturday
Readings: Phil 4:10-19; Lk 16:9-15
The first words of the Gospel today derive a moral parable of the unfaithful. Jesus asks us to use the money and wealth well. The very term ‘mammon’, a Greek and a Hebrew origin, is linked to the idea of ‘faithful’, ‘rely on’. The wealth must be used for ‘eternal dwellings’. Only then, as Jesus teaches the disciples, the hope that we entrust to the unequal wealth will produce like fruit eternity and fidelity. So when the Lord speaks of the true riches, you do not want to erase the difference between what belongs to me and that, instead, belongs to you. The goods of others shall not in any case be removed from them. The eschatological perspective is remembered not because in our relations with earthly riches reign in some ways arbitrary, but because money can have a man fascinating for power. Gospel passage appeal to material possessions has nowadays a force rarely achieved in the past. This is probably a consequence of our economic system. Only caution we can preserve the danger of a new slavery. Not to mention that all television networks, all speakers drive men to yield to new needs and to seek satisfaction with the purchase of material goods. This market constantly stimulates our materialistic attitudes. A trend which, moreover, is confirmed by philosophical theories like “I am what I own” by Jean-Paul Sartre.
“You cannot serve God and mammon.” Let us be cautious that money may not lead us astray, even from God. Money should become the means to do justice and charity. Service to the poor will help us to come close to the presence of God.
06 November, Sunday
Readings: 2 Macc 7:2, 9-14; 2 Thess 2:16-3:5; Lk 20:27-38
After the Pharisees and scribes there appear new enemies of Jesus in the form of the Sadducees. They belonged to an aristocratic set of priestly families. They denied the resurrection from the dead and wanted to trap Jesus. They were concerned that the influx of crowds to Jesus could turn into political turmoil that Romans would be brutally suppressed. Therefore they sought to limit the influence on the public life of Jesus. For this purpose, they told a story of their invention on the seven brothers and the wife to ridicule Jesus and the belief in the resurrection. In fact, the derision turned against opponents of Jesus. In fact, Jesus shows that the future world is not an extension of this, says that death will be overcome and that those who will be raised in the life of God and no longer be submissive the biological laws of this world. In the discussion to follow, based on Exodus (Ex 3:6), the book that the Sadducees held sacred, Jesus presents a biblical argument about eternal life: “God is not God of the dead,” and it would be if Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, they might not live longer. But they live and give glory to God. This also means that only those who live for God really live. God invites all men to his Father’s house; because he wants us all benefit with him the fullness of life in immortality.
07 November, Monday
Readings: Tit 1:1-9; Lk 17:1-6
Today’s gospel is part of ‘Some Sayings of Jesus’ from Luke. These sayings include about Scandal, forgiveness and faith. Jesus warns the persons who are the source of scandal. Scandalize means leading others to confusion of good and evil, away from what God expects; bringing about the fall of one’s brother is even more serious than falling or deceiving themselves. Let us examine ourselves: am I scandalous person? If so, that attitude is to be completely eliminated from us. That is what Jesus tells us. As we are weak humans, let us realize that with the help of God we can resist the evil and the temptations. We have a responsibility not to judge others, and to seek to forgive unconditionally. This is what the faith demands from us. But faith is not a matter of quantity: the essential is that it is, even in embryo, our trust in Christ, our momentum toward him, our desire for him.
Promise: In a context where not only as individuals but also as communities and societies people hurt each other, we are all called to be ambassadors of mercy, forgiveness and healing. Lord, make me today an instrument of peace and reconciliation, and my thoughts, words and actions reflect your merciful and forgiving presence in the world (Ave).
08 November, Tuesday
Readings: Tit 2:1-8, 11-14; Lk 17:7-10
No one will deny the fact that the sayings of Jesus in today’s gospel describe accurately the relationship between people, masters and servants. Jesus wants us his disciples who would be ready to serve others without seeking any reward. Jesus never demands from us something he has not done. Jesus was the master of every one of us and the whole universe. But, he is in the midst of the people ‘as one who serves’ (Lk 22:27). He washed the feet of his apostles to give us the example (cf. Jn 13:15). Announced God’s mercy, compassion and humility and thus expresses his love that reaches us. Jesus lived according to the will of the Father. His preaching always centred on the kingdom of God. Let us make our lives more meaningful by doing what is expected of us from God. Let us do the will of God in our lives. Let us pray, Lord, take away from our soul all traces of our ego and fill us with your love and the attitude of service.
09 November, Wednesday
Readings: Ezek 47:1-2, 8-9, 12 or 1 Cor 3:9-11, 16-17; Jn 2:13-22
Feast: Dedication of the Lateran Basilica
When the Roman Emperor Constantine converted to Christianity in 312, he donated to Pope the Lateran palace, which he had built for his wife Fausta Celio. In 320, he added a church, the church of the Lateran, the first and dignity of all the churches of the West. It is considered the mother of all churches. Consecrated by Pope Sylvester on November 9, 324, with the Basilica of the Holy Savior name, it was the first ever to be publicly consecrated church. During the twelfth century, because of its baptistery, which is the oldest in Rome, it was dedicated to St. John the Baptist; hence the current name of Basilica is St. John Lateran. For more than ten centuries, the Popes had their residence in its vicinity, and within its walls were held two hundred and fifty councils, including five ecumenical. Partially destroyed by fire, war and neglect, it was rebuilt under Pope Benedict XIII and was again consecrated in 1726.
With the Lateran basilica, the Christians could finally worship and celebrate publicly Christ the Saviour. That was built to honor the Savior of the world, and was the symbol of victory; tangible sign of the spiritual temple which is the heart of the Christian, urges to give glory to the one who became flesh and who died and rose again, he lives in eternity. The anniversary of its dedication, originally celebrated only in Rome, it is commemorated now by all the communities of the Roman rite.
This feast must renew in us the love and attachment to Christ and to his Church. The mystery of Christ, who came “not to condemn the world, but to save the world” (Jn 12:47), should inflame our hearts, and the witness of our lives completely dedicated to serving the Lord and our brothers will remind the world the power of love of God, better than they can do in a stone building.
Promise: Let us always respect and uphold the dignity of our own bodies and those of the others and love a meaningful and fulfilling life.
10 November, Thursday
Readings: Philem 7-20; Lk 17:20-25
Memoria: St. Leo the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church
The question Jesus asked his disciples puts continually to us, to commit ourselves to contemplate more deeply, to deepen its mystery: “Who do you say that I am?” St. Leo the Great, who became Pope in the fifth century, said with bright faith Christ’s divinity and his humanity: Christ, the Son of the living God and Son of Mary, a man like us. He has not accepted, so to express ourselves, which shortened the mystery, either in one direction or another and the Council of Chalcedon has sought a formula that preserves all revelation. God has revealed Himself to us in the Son, and the Son is a man who has lived among us, suffered, died, was resurrected. “Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son” (Heb 1:1). And speaking through the prophets God had desired his presence: “If you would rend the heavens and come down!” Isaiah exclaimed. And God came down, is made present in the Son: “God has spoken to us by a Son.”
Promise: Let us not fall prey to the false teachers and their promises for material gains. Let us pray for the wisdom and discernment to follow the teaching of the servants of God: bishops, priests, religious and the laity.
11 November, Friday
Readings: 2 Jn 1:3-9; Lk 17:26-37
Memoria: St. Martin of Tours - Bishop
Martin of Tours as soldier and catechumen, revealed his evangelical charity giving half cloak to a poor benumbed by cold. After Baptism began under the leadership of Hilary (339) and founded a monastery (360), the first in the West. Ordained a priest and bishop of Tours (372) became an apostle of rural populations with the help of the great monks of the monastery in Tours. He joined the group to communicate the Gospel by incessant social elevation of farmers and shepherds. His figure has fundamental importance in the history of the Church under the aspect of pastoral, liturgical and monastic. Saint very popular and the first confessor martyr to be venerated with liturgical rite.
The Gospel today invites us to live according to God’s will and not to ignore God’s will designs for us. We are busy making money forgetting about the human dignity and destiny. For many of us, pleasure has become the most important! We never try to eliminate violence, corruption and injustices that destroy human dignity. God invites us to be other-centred. Jesus says, “Those who try to make their life secure will lose it, but those who lose their life will keep it” (Lk 17:33).
Promise: Let us not be deceived by the falsity of the world by hold on to the teachings of Jesus Christ.
12 November, Saturday
Readings: 3 Jn 1:5-8; Lk 18:1-8
Prayer is important in our life; it is the heart and soul of our Christian life; it communicating with God. It is our spiritual life. It nourishes and sustains our human soul; it is in prayer, that we encounter God and find meaning and fulfillment of our life. In today’s Gospel tells us the need to pray continually and never lose heart. He tells us the parable of the poor widow who persistently asks the judge to do justice for her. We should have perseverance in our prayer. God will come to our help and grant us whatever we need in our life. Let us remember in our prayer also others who are in difficulty. Prayer enables us to establish the right relationship with God and thus with one another. We can take to God all our life in prayer.
Promise: Let us pray for justice in the world. Let us pray for the gift of perseverance in our prayer.
13 November, Sunday
Readings: Mal 3:19-20; 2 Thess 3:7-12; Lk 21:5-19
XXXIII Sunday in Ordinary Time
World Communication Day
The disciples admire the architecture of the Jerusalem temple. The eyes of Jesus will go further: he sees the destruction of Jerusalem, natural catastrophes, the signs from heaven, the persecutions of the Church and the appearance of false prophets. They are manifestations of the decomposition of the old world marked by sin and the birth pangs of a new heaven and a new earth. In all the pressures and extortions exerted on the Church, we should not see some grim tragedy, because they purify our faith, our hope and comfort. We have many opportunities to witness to Christ. Otherwise the world would not know his Gospel or the power of his love. But a greater danger is upon us: there are the false prophets who pretend to be Christ or who speak in his name. Taking advantage of unrest and upheaval caused by history, the false prophets earn their ideologies, their pseudo-scientific ideas about the world and their pseudo-religions. The real coming of Christ will instead be so obvious that no one will doubt. Jesus encourages his disciples of every age to remain at his side until the end. He will turn all the misery, all the failures and even a martyr’s death and glorious resurrection in adoration.
World Communication Day: To communicate means to create a healthy, free and fraternal close relationship with others. The silence to listen to God and the world we choose to communicate with others are very important.
14 November Monday
Rev 1:1-4; 2:1-5; Lk 18:35-43
Faith in Jesus heals us and brings us wholeness and salvation. Jesus listens to the people who cry to him in faith. In today’s gospel, the blind beggar cries to Jesus, “Jesus, son of David, have pity on me”. People scolded him and ordered him to keep quiet. But Jesus listens to his cry of faith. The blind beggar was a man of faith and believed in Jesus and so he could transform his life. He did not ask Jesus for money but asked for the favour of sight for his eyes. His faith his great in Jesus; he calls Jesus as ‘Son of David’ whereas the people called “Nazarene’. We need to be aware and recognize of the presence of Jesus, his power to heal and restoration. He brings both physical and spiritual wholeness. We need to surrender ourselves completely to Jesus; and surely we will be transformed by the healing power of Jesus.
15 November Tuesday
Rev 3:1-6, 14-22; Lk 19:1-10
Today’s gospel speaks about Zacchaeus who wanted to see Jesus and transform his life. Zacchaeus means clean and pure; but he was a tax-collector, an agent of Roman oppression and so was called sinner in the society. His job made him a rich man but physically and morally, he was small in stature. He was hated by his own people. He heard about Jesus healing the blind man in Jericho and was curious to see Jesus. It is another occasion where we come to know that Jesus knows every person by name and knows every heart. Jesus looked at Zacchaeus, called him by name and visited his house. We need to appreciate the great desire of Zacchaeus that he wanted to see Jesus. Together with his desire, Zacchaeus made an effort to see Jesus. His desire and efforts were born out of faith. This leads him to conversion. Now he is really clean and pure. Do you want happen this transformation in your life? Then have faith in Jesus, come to him and he will do the rest together with your efforts.
16 November Wednesday
Rev 4:1-11; Lk 19:11-28
“Our talents are the gifts that God gives to us… What we make of our talents is our gift back to God.” The parable in today’s gospel reminds us that it is God who gives us the talents and the abilities. We need to thank God for every gift, beginning with our gift of life. And remember, these talents are not for personal wealth and gaining admiration. God gives these talents to develop and use for the Kingdom of God here on earth.
Let us not become lazy by hiding our talents and abilities; let us make the best use of them; where there is a will, there is a way; trust in God. Let us not be disappointed in times of difficulties and the moments of confusion. The Lord is with us at all times. Let us pray to God that he may help us to rediscover the gifts and talents that we have and given by God Himself and we may use and share them to all for the glory of God.
17 November Thursday
Rev 5:1-10; Lk 19:41-44
Jesus drew near Jerusalem and came in sight of the city; he shed tears over it and said, “If you too had only recognized on this day the way to peace! But in fact it is hidden from your eyes! The city of Jerusalem signifies the word ‘peace’! Jesus is sad that he is not recognized by the people as the Messiah and the prince of peace. His numerous attempts were met with firm resistance and arrogance. Their minds were closed to the peace that the prince of peace offers. Jesus feels the rejection. Dear friends, we too often times close our eyes and hearts to this reality; the reality that Jesus alone can give us the true peace and happiness. We always cry there is no peace in our homes and in our relationships, because there is no Jesus in our homes and relationships. Let us pray that God may open our hearts and allow him to reign in us.
18 November, Friday
Rev 10:8-11; Lk 19:45-48
“My house shall be house of prayer.” Gospel of Like is the gospel of prayer. Jesus is upset seeing the temple which is turned into a market place, buying and selling. Jesus wanted to maintain serenity and sanctity in the temple so that it is suitable for prayer, to converse with God, the Father. Jesus makes it clear that our churches are the places where we experience God in prayer, and so he invites us to maintain silence and serenity in our churches. Let us not desecrate the churches. Jesus himself was cleansing the temple by chasing away the money changers and those busy trading there. But, the chief priests and the scribes and the leaders of the people, meanwhile were seeking to put Jesus to death.
At the same time let us not confine ourselves to the material churches alone. Church is the body of Christ. We are God’s temple; we are God’s dwelling places. Let us respect ourselves, others and live a life of holiness and worthy of God.
19 November, Saturday
Rev 11:4-12; Lk 20:27-40
Sadducees, unlike the Pharisees did not believe in the resurrection. They wanted to question Jesus regarding the resurrection. Their intention was to trap Jesus with the debate on the issue. Jesus draws the attention that our God is the God of the living, not of the dead. He led them to the deeper understanding of what life in and with God is. We often speak of heaven but none of us give a clear sense of it. St. Paul says, “What no eye has seen, not ear heard, not the human heart conceived, what God has prayed for those who love him” (1 Cor 2:9). The Bible tries to explain it with images and symbols. What is important for us is to live in faith. God loves us unconditionally. He continues to love us even our passing from this world. We have a life even after our death. We will be alive with God.
Let us live our present life here on earth loving God and one another and be assured that we will live with God, thereafter.
20 November, Sunday
2 Sam 5:1-3; Col 1:12-20; Lk 23:35-43
XXXIV Sunday in Ordinary Time
Solemnity of Christ the King
Today we celebrate the feast of Christ the King; Jesus is the king of kings and he is the king of our lives. He is not like the other kings of this world. He established his kingdom by sacrificing his life. He forgave his enemies from the cross. His kingdom is of peace, joy, love and happiness. Christ the king died for the sin of each of us and of the world. He brought salvation for the whole world and so his kingdom is for the whole world. Today’s gospel reflects about the heavenly kingship of Jesus. His kingship is a kingship of obedience, of humility, of servanthood and of suffering and sacrifice for the salvation of all humanity. We have two options: to insult Christ the king like the unrepentant thief on the cross or accept Jesus as our king like the other thief who asked Jesus to remember him when he comes to his kingdom.
Jesus always proclaimed the kingdom in his preaching from the very beginning of his ministry; it was his clear mission: To preach the kingdom of God to the other towns for this purpose I have been sent (Lk 4:44); He taught his disciples to pray, Thy kingdom come (Mt 6:10); He told them, seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all of these things will be given to you (Mt 6:33). He asked this mission to continue, as you go, make this proclamation; the kingdom of heaven is at hand (Mt 10:7). Jesus explained this kingdom with images and parables. Let us accept Jesus as the King and be part of his kingdom, that alone give us true peace, joy and happiness.