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Sunday, 15 October 2017

RSVP


28th Sunday in Ordinary Time 
15 October 2017


First reading
Isaiah 25:6-10
On this mountain,
the Lord of hosts will prepare for all peoples
a banquet of rich food.
On this mountain he will remove
the mourning veil covering all peoples,
and the shroud enwrapping all nations,
he will destroy Death for ever.
The Lord will wipe away
the tears from every cheek;
he will take away his people’s shame
everywhere on earth,
for the Lord has said so.
That day, it will be said: See, this is our God
in whom we hoped for salvation;
the Lord is the one in whom we hoped.
We exult and we rejoice
that he has saved us.

                
Second reading
Philippians 4:12-14,19-20
I know how to be poor and I know how to be rich too. I have been through my initiation and now I am ready for anything anywhere: full stomach or empty stomach, poverty or plenty. There is nothing I cannot master with the help of the One who gives me strength. All the same, it was good of you to share with me in my hardships. In return my God will fulfil all your needs, in Christ Jesus, as lavishly as only God can. Glory to God, our Father, for ever and ever. Amen.

Gospel
Matthew 22:1-14
Jesus began to speak to the chief priests and elders of the people in parables: ‘The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a feast for his son’s wedding. He sent his servants to call those who had been invited, but they would not come. Next he sent some more servants. “Tell those who have been invited” he said “that I have my banquet all prepared, my oxen and fattened cattle have been slaughtered, everything is ready. Come to the wedding.” But they were not interested: one went off to his farm, another to his business, and the rest seized his servants, maltreated them and killed them. The king was furious. He despatched his troops, destroyed those murderers and burnt their town. Then he said to his servants, “The wedding is ready; but as those who were invited proved to be unworthy, go to the crossroads in the town and invite everyone you can find to the wedding.” So these servants went out on to the roads and collected together everyone they could find, bad and good alike; and the wedding hall was filled with guests. When the king came in to look at the guests he noticed one man who was not wearing a wedding garment, and said to him, “How did you get in here, my friend, without a wedding garment?” And the man was silent. Then the king said to the attendants, “Bind him hand and foot and throw him out into the dark, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth.” For many are called, but few are chosen.’

Reflection
by Ma. Rosalina S. Flores

We Filipinos could easily relate with today's gospel as we are truly fond of celebrations. We love to celebrate each and every occasion; be it a birthday, fiesta, or wedding. But unlike the birthday and fiesta which happen every year, wedding only happens once. Therefore, detailed preparations are observed from choosing the best gown to food tasting up to the listing of guests. Everything is set to perfection. And much more is expected on the day itself.
  
When we are invited to a wedding, do we immediately say yes and find time to come? Or do we value more our daily routine than to rejoice with the couple on the day of their union? Are we the type of guests who stick with our fashion style to the point of ignoring the required attire for the occasion? What if the invitation is for our salvation and everlasting life with the Lord? Are we ready with our yeses?

The three main components of the parable refer to the wedding feast as the kingdom; the king as our Father; and the son as Jesus Christ. We as baptized and have knowledge on the teachings of the Church are considered as the first guests to the kingdom of God. But because of our complacency and attachment to material world, we tend to decline God’s invitation to follow His son, Jesus. Even if we know the commandments, we still choose to sin that hinder us to come closer to Him. That applies the statement, “the first will be the last, the last will be first”.

On the other hand, there is a more dangerous thing that we should avoid. Sometimes we think we are religiously obeying God. We go to church every Sunday, regularly go to confession, give tithes, and do charity works. But, we hold grudge within our hearts, could not forgive someone who sins against us, and even seek the evil in others. We might think those acts will not cause us denied entrance to the kingdom of God. Well, these are the silent killers of our souls. Those little things we ignore will cause us harm in the end. It might delay our pass to heaven or worse could bring us to hell.

When our Father summons His angels to invite us, may we be able to say yes and make time to come. Moreover, may they find us worthy of the kingdom upon entering so that we can enjoy the everlasting feast with Jesus prepared by the Father.

Prayer
Our Father in Heaven, send the Holy Spirit to each of us so that we may happily respond to Jesus' invitation to salvation and wholeheartedly prepare ourselves to become worthy of His call. Amen.

Followers

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