Ezra 1:1-6, Ps.126, Lk. 8:16-18.
1. Today we celebrate the memorial of St. Andrew Kim Taegon and companions; a group of 103 Korean Catholics who gave up their lives for Christ and the Church during the persecution of Christians in the 19th century.
2. The Responsorial Psalm says: ‘What great deeds the Lord has worked for us, indeed, we were glad.’
3. We worship the God who created the universe and the only worker of great deeds.
4. When we come before the presence of God we are never the same as we came.
5. In his presence, there is fullness of joy (Ps. 16:11).
6. Yesterday, I told the people during my homily, that the Lord is helping us. God never sleeps; hence, he cannot be taken by surprise.
7. Each time we come before the Lord, the Lord empowers and fortifies us with his grace; the Lord helps us.
8. Hence, we are told in the Gospel reading that we are made to shine.
9. Jesus says: ‘No one after lighting a lamp covers it with a vessel; or puts it under a bed, but puts it on a stand that those who enter may see the light.’ We are lamps already lighted by Jesus. We made to shine.
10. We carry within us the light of Christ and this light is renewed in the Lord’s presence.
11. ‘Arise, shine for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you’(Ps. 60:1).
12. Rom. 8:35-Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will affliction or distress or persecution or hunger or nakedness or peril or the sword?
13. Rom. 8:37-Yet in all this we are more than conquerors through him who has loved us.
14. As long as you cannot be separated from the love of God, nothing can make you not to shine.
15. Put your life back on the stand and begin to shine. ‘Lord may I shine again.’
16. In the first reading, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia and he told the people, ‘let us go and rebuild the house of the Lord.’
17. You are the house of the Lord. The Lord wants us to rebuild his house collapsed by lack of faith; doubt, fear, evil and unrighteousness.
18. You are a lighthouse. Just as a lighthouse helps sailors to navigate, you are a lighthouse in the world.
19. Arise and shine in good health; divine protection; favour, in the Lord’s goodness, happiness and joy.
ACT OF SPIRITUAL COMMUNION
My Jesus, I believe that you are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot receive you sacramentally now, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself to you. Never permit me to be separated from you Amen.
Fr. Ephraim Itaman