Misunderstood? | Inquirer Opinion


The story is told about Mrs. Einstein, who was asked if she understood her husband’s Theory of Relativity. “I have lived with him for many years, but I never did understand his work,” she replied. When asked further how their marriage could be happy if she couldn’t understand her husband’s work, her simple reply was: “I understand him.”

In today’s Gospel (Mk. 6, 1-6a), we hear how Jesus was misunderstood by the people in his native place, leading him to say: “A prophet is not without honor in his native place and among his own kin and in his own house.” Indeed. How true. Amen.


The problem with some people is that they are shooters, and sharp ones at that. They shoot down anyone who goes above or ahead of them. Insecurity can make us do strange and foul things.

Some people, meanwhile, are stalkers, constantly watching and monitoring others. Their constant concern is to find fault, give judgment and put down others.


And, then, there are the talkers, whose favorite pastime is to spread rumors and make up stories about everything and everyone. Our world has become very cruel and unfair. Decency has become such a lonely word.

The World Cup fever is on. While we are all so focused on the players, especially on the star players, we often forget the three referees and the important role they play in the game of football. They run with the players. They do not have substitutes for the entire game. They get shouted at, cursed and blamed. Yes, blessed are the keepers of peace, and the makers of peace in our midst.

Think about this: “God blesses us, not by shielding us from sorrow and pain, but by strengthening us; not by making our path easy, but by making us strong; not by taking away our hardships, but by taking away fear from our hearts.”

An inspiring message for those who are going through any kind of sickness or suffering: “When I first found out I had cancer, I didn’t know what to pray for. I didn’t know if I should pray for healing or life or death. Then I found peace in praying for what my folks call God’s perfect will. As it has evolved, my prayer has become, ‘Lord, let me live until I die.’ By that I mean I want to live, love, and serve fully until death comes.” (Sister Thea Bowman)

I gave a talk to the Camarines Sur Medical Society in Naga City last June 29, upon the invitation of Dr. Rufo Llorin Jr. I urged them to excel in their profession, to see it as a mission and to be more personal—i.e., to go the extra mile, and to give that extra smile. God bless our doctors—Dr. Emil Alegre, Dr. Cora Martinez, Dr. Rose Castro-Espiritu, Dr. Marti Magsanoc, Dr. Alvis Sarte, Dr. Tante Muñoz, to name some—who are men and women of science and deep faith.

I met Most Rev. Arturo Bastes, SVD, DD, Bishop of Sorsogon. He is 74 years old, healthy and maintenance medicine-free! His secret? He smiles and laughs a lot. And, as he says, he does not take his position seriously, for it is God’s work, and he is just an instrument and a servant. Thank you for the inspiration, dear professor, mentor, confrere and friend.

I lost some sleep last June 24 watching Jose Mari Chan’s special over ABS-CBN, celebrating 50 years of his heartwarming songs and music, all coming from a heart that deeply understands life and love. Thank you, Jose Mari, for your person, your work and your inspiration to the max, through the years!


Inviting you to a pilgrimage to Iloilo this Aug. 15-18 to visit old churches, and to experience the Trappist Monastery in Guimaras Island. This pilgrimage will also include the blessing of a Padre Pio Shrine and Chapel in Pototan on Aug. 16. For inquiries, please contact Pilgrims Center/Executive Resources (523-8581 to 88, 0917-6311902, [email protected]).

A moment with the Lord:

Lord, give me a mind that knows, and a heart that truly understands. Amen.

[email protected]

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