Baptism of the Lord, Cycle A

4

Is 42:1-4, 6-7; Acts 10:34-38; Mt 3:13-17

The first thing that comes to mind when we consider this feast, is the question, “Why does Jesus have to be baptized?” Even John the Baptist asked that same question: “I ought to be baptized by you and yet you come to me?” The answer of Jesus was, “… it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Here “righteousness” refers to the decree of the Father concerning Jesus’ work for our salvation: that Jesus is to be like us in everything except sin. He undergoes baptism because he would require it for all his followers: “Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit…” (Mt 28:19). He goes to the Jordan River not to be cleansed by its waters, but to sanctify the waters for our baptism. When in the time of Noah the world was full of sin, God cleansed it by water, so now Jesus decrees that the water is to cleanse all his disciples in the Name of the Blessed Trinity. At the moment of creation the ruah YHWH was hovering over the waters to effect the creation of beings, so now the Spirit hovers over the humanity of Jesus to effect the new man in all the baptized as a new creation. In our first reading (Is 42:1) the Lord says, “Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one with whom I am pleased, upon whom I have put my Spirit.” Again, in the second reading (Acts 10:38) Peter declared, “… after the baptism…God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power.” The water and the Sprit hovering over the humanity of Jesus was a preparation for our own baptism, the water and the Spirit on our humanity cleansing us of sin and incorporating us into Jesus. In the Gospel we read, “The heavens were opened.” St. Mark would say, “The heavens were rent,” (napunit), which is more meaningful. When we say “opened” it can be closed; but when it is “rent” (napunit) there is no closing, it will remain open and there will always be a passage between heaven and earth. Therefore, from the time Jesus was baptized, the stairway between heaven and earth has always been accessible, there was always an opening for grace to flow upon us and our prayers to go up to the throne of God. Then the voice of the Father is heard, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” This voice we hear again at the Transfiguration where clearly Jesus manifested his divinity. God the Father himself claimed Jesus as His Son. (It must be noted that, even today, enemies of the Catholic Church claim that the Gospels do not claim that Jesus is God.) Clearly, two times in the Gospel God the Father claimed that Jesus is his Son. Then we note that in this event the Spirit of God manifested himself physically in the form of a dove. God showed himself clearly as the Blessed Trinity: the Father in the Voice, the Son in the human Jesus, and the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove, all three perceptible to the senses. Notice how God condescended to our human nature, to be perceived by us in our human way.

In summary, first, we noted that the baptism of Jesus was in preparation for our own baptism; second, that the heavens have been opened for the communion between heaven and earth; and third, God revealed himself to us as Three Persons in One God. This event of the Lord’s baptism is, therefore, meaningful for our faith.

Contemplate: The Father says those words: “You are my beloved son/ daughter” over you, what feelings do they evoke in you? Would you prostrate in adoration, love and gratitude?

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena, OAR

Fray Hubert Dunstan Decena, OAR

Priest/Religious/Bible Professor of the Order of Augustinian Recollects in the Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno.

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< 2020 >
October
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  • All day
    October 1, 2020

    LAUNCHING OF ROSARY MONTH

    Note to all Local Priors [for the Book of Masses]: After the feast of the Archangels (Sept. 29), “a Mass is to be offered for the living relatives, friends, and benefactors of the Order” (cf. Add. Code 70d)

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    October 2, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Leonardo Pauligue
    Sr. Leah Lachica, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (2004-2020)
    Fray Leo Alaras

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    START OF THE NOVENA TO OUR LADY OF THE ABANDONED (Valencia) / OUR LADY OF THE PILLAR (Baguio)

    POPE FRANCIS’ PASTORAL VISIT TO ASSISI

    BIRTHDAY
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    Sr. Elyn Joy Olmedo, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
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    Fray Bernard Amparado
    Fray Cristituto Palomar
    Fray Joseph Granada
    Fray Jorge Peligro

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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4
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    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR OAR VOCATION (cf. LAMP I,5c)

    BIRTHDAY
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    Fray Joffrey Casusa (novice)
    Sr. Manuela Mandia, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    (2003-2020)
    Fray Celestino Cachapero, OAR

5
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    WORLD TEACHER’S DAY

    BIRTHDAY
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    BIRTHDAY
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    Sr. Rona Alaza, AR

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    BIRTHDAY
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    Sr. Juliet Natinga, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2006-2020)
    Fray Henry Santiago
    Fray Anthony Irineo
    Fray Russell Lapidez
    Fray Virgilio Paredes, Jr.

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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    BIRTHDAY
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    3rd FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY OF THE COMMUNITY OF RECOLETOS DE URBIZTONDO (Pangasinan)

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    ST. THOMAS OF VILLANOVA,
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    PRIOR GENERAL LAUNCHES THE BOOK:
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    BIRTHDAY
    Most Rev. Raul Dael, DD [Bishop of Tandag]
    Sr. Ofelia Laspobres, AR

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    ST. POPE JOHN XIII

    PARISH FIESTA OF NSTRA. SNRA. BIRHEN DE LOS REMEDIOS PARISH (Tanapag Village, Saipan)
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    Presider: Most Rev. Ryan Jimenez, D.D. (Bishop of Chalan Kanoa)

    BIRTHDAY
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    BLD. MARIA THERESA FASCE, Virgin

    SOLEMNITY OF OUR LADY OF THE PILLAR
    TOMA DE HÁBITO
    Time: 9:00 A.M. / CARES, Baguio City
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    PATRONAL FIESTA: PARISH OF OUR LADY OF THE ABANDONED
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    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Seiji Ishii (novice)
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    Sr. Marilyn Gustilo, AR
    Sr. Bernarditha Barnido, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Mo. Dionisia Mitas de Santa Maria Talangpaz

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    COMMEMORATION OF THE DECEASED BENEFACTORS OF OAR

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    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Laura Cabanacan, AR
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    BIRTHDAY
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    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2005-2020)
    Fray Vincent Cadeliña

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Monica de Espiritu Santo, AR

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    WORLD FOOD DAY 2020

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    Fray Manuel Lipardo
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    Fray William Emilito Villaflor

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17
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    Sr. Gabriela Garcines, AR
    Sr. Jacinta Mandia Robin, AR

18
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    WORLD MISSION SUNDAY
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    25th FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY (1995-2020) SARF- VALENCIA CHAPTER

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    Jonel Mendoza (RAY-Miranila)

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    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR THE SICK (cf. LAMP I,5c)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Arlyn Sarmiento, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Ma. Virginia Acha, AR

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    ST. MAGDALENE OF NAGASAKI,
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    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Ken Oliver Lao

21
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    BIRTHDAY
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    ST. POPE JOHN PAUL II

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    Archbp. Agustinus Agus, DD (Archdiocese of Pontianak, Indonesia)
    Fray Edgar Tubio
    Sr. Teresita Diana, AR

23
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    ST. WILLIAM THE HERMIT & BLD. JOHN THE GOOD, Religious

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    Fray Hernando Coja
    Sr. Herminia Catindig, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1967-2020)
    Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena

24
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    BIRTHDAY
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    Fray Glynn Ortega

25
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    ST. JOHN STONE, Priest & Martyr

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    Simon Kurt Casupanan (RAY-Cavite)
    Nestor Tala (RAY-Miranila)

    25th ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
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    Fray Joel Dequilla

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    Most Rev. Buenaventura Famadico, DD (Diocese of San Pablo)

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    BIRTHDAY
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    Sr. Rosalie Ubo, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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    BIRTHDAY
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    Mo. Presentacion de San Jose, AR
    Sr. Martina Labao, AR

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    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR OAR MISSION (cf. LAMP I,5c)

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    ANNIVERSARY
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    BIRTHDAY
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    Fray Dominador Mercado Jr.
    Sr. Lorlie Decir, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1999-2020)
    Fray Joel Alve

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    BIRTHDAY
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    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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