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Tell the world of His love

The story is told about a family that was so troubled not only because their father was dying, but also because they had to go to the container yard to look for a 20-foot container van that will be used to accommodate all his worldly belongings which he insisted must be buried with him together with his coffin!

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In today’s Gospel (Jn. 3, 14-21), we hear the most important line in the Holy Bible: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him might not perish but might have eternal life” (Jn. 3, 16). We are bound for heaven, not for the grave. Our final destination is to be united with our Creator, the living and loving God.

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Oops… mea culpa. In my column last Sunday, instead of writing about Jesus driving out the sellers from the temple, I wrote about the Parable of the Prodigal Son. Mistakes happen. Mistakes can be forgiven. We take consolation with the conviction that our God is a God who saves, not a God who condemns. May we, too, become more and more like Him.

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Today is Laetare Sunday, a day for gladness and rejoicing. This fourth Sunday of Lent invites us to focus not so much on our personal Lenten sacrifices and abstinence, as on the overwhelming and overflowing love of God for us. Our response to God’s love is little compared to His generous love for us.

As it were, we cannot ever repay His love for us, but we can resolve to obey Him more joyfully and lovingly. Going to heaven is not so much about fulfilling the requirements, as going the extra mile.

And doing it all with a smile.

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It has been 500 years when we as a people, and as a nation, have been gifted with our faith. Have we appreciated our faith? Have we lived our faith? Have we shared our faith? We have been gifted, to give!

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Pope Francis, together with Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, will celebrate the Thanksgiving Mass for the 500 years of Christianity in the Philippines, at St. Peter’s Basilica on Sunday, March 14 (10 a.m. Rome time) or (5 p.m. Manila time) which will be broadcast live on TV Maria, Facebook, and on other TV and cable channels. There are three R’s for our quincentennial celebration: Remember with gratitude our gift of faith; Rejoice with humility, for the growth of our faith; and Renew our commitment to share our gift of faith to the whole world.

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The first Filipino SVD missionaries (Fr. Fernando de Pedro, SVD, and Fr. Manuel Villaruz, SVD) were sent to Indonesia in 1951. To date there are about 120 Filipino SVD missionaries working in 40 countries all over the world, following our Lord’s mandate to “go into the whole world and preach the Gospel to all creation” (Mk. 16:15), and continue to tell the world of His love.

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Lest we forget, we have “anonymous” Filipino missionaries. They are our kababayan who have left home and country for work or migration, who bring our faith, and our brand of Filipino Christianity far and wide, helping give life and joy to Churches all over the world. Mabuhay ang mga Pinoy na misyonero sa buong mundo!

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Think about this: “A mask is better than a ventilator; home is better than ICU; prevention is better than cure; It’s not curfew. It’s care for you.”

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A moment with the Lord: Lord, may we all do our part to tell the world of Your love. Amen.

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TAGS: Gospel, Jerry M. Orbos, Moments
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