3rd day of Simbanggabi (December 18)

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Gospel Reading

Mat 1:18-24

18Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly.  20But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” 22All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet:  23“Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel,” which means, “God is with us.” 24When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife.

General Observations on the Text  

The Matthean Literary Context

In verse 16 of the previous literary unit, Matthew hinted to his readers the unnaturalness of the birth of Jesus.  Matthew did not use the expected x is the father of y formula or Joseph is the father of Jesus.  Thus, for Matthew, Jesus was not born in the same manner that the other members of his ancestry were born (cf. Dec 17 commentary).  In this gospel pericope (vv.18-25) Matthew is set to explain how the supra-natural circumstances surrounding Jesus’ birth happened.

In this pericope, Joseph is the central image or the main character in the narrative.  It is his struggle, his dream, his decision as well as his acceptance of a role in life he never thought of.

Will the Real Joseph Stand?

Joseph had his own personal plans and visions in his life.  He, like any other ordinary Jew, planned to have his own family, probably, with a good number of children, the sons of which will be heirs of his trade–carpentry, his righteousness and everything that he is.  All these he envisioned having Mary as his lifetime partner.  Mary, is already reserved for him, they were engaged. The whole Jewish society considered them to be legally married.  What was just lacking for the realization of his personal plans was the final rite of the Jewish matrimony–the procession, in which he will fetch Mary from her father’s house and bring her to his own.  When was this final rite to occur, we are not told, but surely Joseph was looking forward with eagerness to the beginning of his new life with Mary as his wife.

Suddenly, things changed, all his plans were held in abeyance.  Mary, her legal wife, was discovered to be pregnant.  Whatever were the circumstances surrounding the unexpected pregnancy of Mary – there are provisions in the Torah (Deut 22:23-27):

  1. 23If there is a young woman, a virgin already engaged to be married, and a man meets her in the town and lies with her, 24you shall bring both of them to the gate of that town and stone them to death, the young woman because she did not cry for help in the town and the man because he violated his neighbor’s wife.  You shall purge the evil from your midst.
  1. But if the man meets the engaged woman in the open country, and the man seizes her and lies with her, then only the man who lay with her shall die; you shall not do anything to the young woman, the young woman has not committed an offense punishable by death, because this case is like that of somebody who attacks and murders a neighbor.  Since, he found her in the open country, the engaged woman may have cried for help but there was no one to rescue her.

Joseph was a righteous Jew.  He had to follow the prescriptions of the Torah–to divorce Mary because she was already defiled. At its worst, he could have exposed her to the torah’s stiffest prescriptions with the probability of her being stoned to death. However, there was something different in Joseph’s righteousness in relation to the law–it was tempered with mercy “not wishing to expose her to the law decided to set her free secretly”  (v.19).

The Divine Plan

Beyond Joseph’s personal plans, was an unknown divine intention.  He was to be part of God’s greatest design and gracious desire to re-claim humanity through Jesus Christ.  And this was revealed to him in a dream.  He was asked by God if it were possible for him let go of his dreams, his personal plans and say yes to God’s proposal–not to fear and, to take Mary as his wife, despite her seeming unworthiness, for even Mary is part of God’s design.

The Joseph of the Gospel

The silence of Joseph is astounding.  There is no word heard from him.    However, his silence is not apathetic; it is neither non-committal, nor non involvement; it is not a silence characterized by the mere absence of words and emptiness of content.  In the most sacred of all silences, Joseph realized that his personal plans and dreams were no match to God’s grand design for him:  God made him realize his royal Davidic descent–Joseph, son of David (v.21); God commissioned him to give a name to his would be son-–a name which determines his son’s destiny Jesus, the one to save the people from their sin (v.21).  All these are not a product of an overnight change of the mind of God–these were forecasted long ago by the prophet Isaiah:

A virgin shall conceive a child and bear a son,

and his name shall be called Immanuel.

In silence Joseph had to make his personal decision, he is challenged to take a role more than he thought of, he is to let go of his own dreams and visions and take a road paved for him by God.  And this he did – Awaking from sleep, he did what the angel of the Lord commanded him…(v.24).

 

Points for Homily

1.  The silence of Joseph is made manifest in his obedience to God, letting go of what is so personal and accepting God’s challenge that effect greater good for others.

2.  God has always the best reserved plan for each and everyone of us.  One needs to discover God’s will for him and one simply has to be courageous to accept God’s challenge.  He who accepts God’s challenge achieves the greatest joy, highest contentment and authentic happiness.

Fr.’der, oar

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Frei Bo

Frei Bo

Priest-Religious of the Order of Augustinian Recollects, Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno. Webmaster.

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< 2022 >
January
SMTuWThFS
      1
  • All day
    January 1, 2022

    SOLEMNITY OF MARY, MOTHER OF GOD

    55th WORLD DAY OF PEACE BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Cristita Cha, AR

2
  • All day
    January 2, 2022

    SOLEMNITY OF THE EPIPHANY

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Conrado Flores, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Emma Toro, SAR (Valencia Chapter)
    Sis. Marcelina Nicolas, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Erlinda Casaje, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis.  Arsenia  Villanueva  (Trial  /  Urbiztondo Chapter)
    Charlene Catchillar (RAY-Urbiztondo)
    Jorge Datuin (RAY-Urbiztondo)

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (2021-2022)

    Fray Chrislean Rey Pamilaga

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Rizalina Salera, SAR (Cavite Chapter)

3
  • All day
    January 3, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Bella Mojica, AR
    Sis. Basilisa Espinola, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Carmencita Abis, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Melodina Paragat, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Sis. Estelita Buenavista, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Angelina Bacalso, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Clemencia Ranin, AR

4
  • All day
    January 4, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Br. Danny Cabuslay Jr. (1st year Aspirant, CaReS, Baguio)
    Bro. Ernil Orbecido, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Sis Mary Grace Susas, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Cristina Domingo, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Fran Cheska Marie Andan (RAY-Laray)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Regina Cadiz, AR
    +Sr. Adelaida Elli, AR

5
  • All day
    January 5, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Br. Jude Dacullo (3rd year Postulant, CaReS, Baguio)
    Sis Estelita Divinagracia, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Bro. Jose Pepito Gabriel Bonete, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Emiliana Carao, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Yulanda Lim, SAR (Trial / Miranila Chapter)
    Leila Barizo (RAY-Cavite)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Cleofe Claro, AR
    +Fray Casiano Cosmilla

6
  • All day
    January 6, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Sylvia Evina, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Grace Aba-a, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Aurora Decipolo, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Remedios Solatan, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Dominga Torregosa, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Juana de la Merced, AR
    +Bro. Rustico Magdales, SAR (Manila Chapter)

7
  • All day
    January 7, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Eliza Stubbs, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Lorelie Cabanes, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

8
  • All day
    January 8, 2022

    EPISCOPAL CORONATION OF NUESTRA SEÑORA DEL CARMEN, LA LIMPIA
    OLMCP-Recoletos, Cebu City
    9:30 A.M.
    Presider: Most Rev. Jose Palma, D.D.

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Ian Anthony Espartero
    Sr. Leticia Cerdeño, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION
    Most Rev. Julito Cortes, D.D. (Diocese of Dumaguete)

    NOTE: Due to the ongoing pandemic, the Provincial-level Christmas Party is called off

9
  • All day
    January 9, 2022

    FEAST OF THE BAPTISM OF THE LORD

    FEAST OF THE BLACK NAZARENE
    (The traditional Traslación is canceled due to Covid-19)

    BIRTHDAY
    Br. Joshua Miguel Salmon (3rd year Postulant, CaReS, Baguio)
    Sr. Rosario Bianes, AR
    Sis. Marcelina Taguinod, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Dominga Gargarita, AR

10
  • All day
    January 10, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Br. Jayson Solmayor (3rd year Postulant, CaReS, Baguio)

    D
    EATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Luz Asuncion Nitura, AR
    +Sr. Paulina de la Purisima Corazon de Maria, AR

11
  • All day
    January 11, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Catalina Ruiz, AR
    Sis. Elena Dagdag, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Ian Gabrielle Canlubo (RAY-Cavite)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Zita Lloren, AR
    +Sis. Elena Caballero, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

12
  • All day
    January 12, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Reynaldo Jaranilla
    Sis. Josephine Guinto, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Bro. Hilario Torcedo, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    +Sr. Ma. Fortunata Gayumale Gaspillo, AR

13
  • All day
    January 13, 2022

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION
    (1998-2022)
    Archbp. Jose Palma, D.D. (Archdiocese of Cebu)

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Jonathan Casiño, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Bro. Antonio Sonsona, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Mo. Rosario Rosales, AR

14
  • All day
    January 14, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Emilia Madrigal, AR
    Bro. Jose Valdez, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Luisa Gumiran, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Esterlita Gracia, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    +Sis. Aurea Figura, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    +Sis. Vicenta Prado, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

15
  • All day
    January 15, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Anthony Irineo
    Sr. Ma. Marcela de la Cruz, AR
    Bro. Maximo Epanto, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Virgin de la Consolacion, AR

16
  • All day
    January 16, 2022

    FEAST OF THE STO. NINO

    COMMEMORATION OF THE DEAD RELATIVES OF THE MEMBERS OF THE ORDER

    BIRTHDAY
    Br. Jhon Russell Manalastas (2nd year Aspirant, CaReS, Baguio)
    Br. Janrey Palmis (1st year Aspirant, CaReS, Baguio)
    Mo. Maria del Carmen, OAR (Bacolod)
    Sr. Zerah Cordero, AR
    Sis. Alice Mojica, SAR (Cavite Chapter)
    Sis. Bernarda Tan, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Melissa Sandil, SAR (ManilaChapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Lucia Degamo, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    +Sis. Amelia Casiño, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    +Bro. Rustico Magdales, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    +Sis. Cleofe Alvarez, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

17
  • All day
    January 17, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Corvin Maturan
    Sis. Belen Taniagao, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Celedonia de la Santissima Trinidad, AR
    +Sr. Cesaria Barbarona, AR

18
  • All day
    January 18, 2022

    WEEK OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY
    January 18-25, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Joseph Dexter Palagtiosa
    Sis. Guia Gonzales, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Christina So, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Rhea Canania (RAY-Urbiztondo)

19
  • All day
    January 19, 2022

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Cleofe Maria Agua, AR
    Sis. Angelica Tejada, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Myrna Amante, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Teodora Delus (Trial / Baguio Chapter)
    Sis. Sheny Valerio (Trial / Urbiztondo Chapter)

20
  • All day
    January 20, 2022

    ST. SEBASTIAN (PATRON SAINT OF MANILA & CAVITE COMMUNITIES, DIOCESE OF BACOLOD)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Adelina Reyes, AR
    Sis. Mercedes Velada, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Bibiana Madrietta, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

21
  • All day
    January 21, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Urbano Galanido
    Fray Jerome Virtudazo
    Sis. Leticia de Silva, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Sis. Alice Catulong, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Ofelia Balocating (Trial / Urbiztondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Flaviana Minoza, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

22
  • All day
    January 22, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Most Rev. Victor Bendico, DD (Bishop of Baguio)

23
  • All day
    January 23, 2022

    SUNDAY OF THE WORD OF GOD
    [Pope Francis’ Apostolic Letter, Motu proprio Aperuit illis, published on 30 September 2019, establishes that “the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time is to be devoted to the celebration, study and dissemination of the Word of God”.]

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Marciano Cleofas, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Gloria Acosta, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Esterlina Silva, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Rosemarie Gaspar, SAR (Valencia Chapter)
    Sis. Melba Cariño, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Judith Mondejar (RAY-Caidiocan)
    Kathrine Bacalso (RAY-Laray)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Gertrudis del Pilar, AR
    +Sr. Cresencia Vailoces, AR
    +Sis. Felisa Torrecampo, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

24
  • All day
    January 24, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Paz Bawagan, AR Sr. Faith Niña Fuertes, AR
    Sis. Florida San Juan, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Raymunda Co, SAR (Laray Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Paz Chico, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Analyn Martinez (RAY-Valencia)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Bro. Teofilo Jabonero, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

25
  • All day
    January 25, 2022

    SOLEMNITY OF THE CONVERSION OF ST. PAUL

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Rodelio Gasparillo, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Bro. Feddie Junsay, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Joelle Maria Mendoza (RAY-Miranila)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Lucia Sagmit, AR

26
  • All day
    January 26, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Cristopher Maspara
    Sis. Henrietta Morales, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Emenciana Cabaral, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION
    (2005-2022)
    Most Rev. Reynaldo Evangelista, D.D. (Diocese of Imus)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Margarita Zafra, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

27
  • All day
    January 27, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Marilyn Cula, AR
    Sr. Remilyn Leonido, AR
    Sis. Evelyn Balingit, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Luzonica Del Rosario, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Florepis Vergara, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Murita Jara, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    +Sis. Eusebia Siarez, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

28
  • All day
    January 28, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Louie Gabinete
    Br. Ken Joshua Manalo (1st year Aspirant, CaReS, Baguio)
    Sis. Lita Lorenzo, SAR (Manila Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Fernanda del Pilar, AR
    +Sr. Ines Garcia, AR

29
  • All day
    January 29, 2022

    FEAST OF NUESTRA SEÑORA DEL CARMEN DE SAN SEBASTIAN

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Francisca Rojas, AR
    Sis. Lourdes Insigne, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Anecita Paglinawan, SAR (Laray Chapter)
    Sis. Angelina Duhig, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Jona Mendoza (RAY-Miranila)
    Marielet Vital (RAY-Urbiztondo)

30
  • All day
    January 30, 2022

    4TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

    WORLD LEPROSY DAY

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Jonathan Caballero
    Sr. Angelica Fuentes, AR
    Sr. Pascualina Peral, AR
    Sis. Violeta Siozon, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Fedencia dela Criz, SAR (Brooke’s Point Chapter)
    Sis. Minerva Alcarde, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Evangeline Castro, SAR (Trial / Urbiztondo Chapter)
    Sis. Julieta Dawa, SAR (Laray Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Bro. Jay Rosauro Cortez, SAR (Manila Chapter)

31
  • All day
    January 31, 2022

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Josephine Ativo, AR
    Sis. Saturnina Antolihao, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Lance Raven Lapinig (RAY-Talisay)

     

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