21st Sunday in Ordinary Time
August 22, 2021 –
24th Consecration Anniversary of Bp. Abogatal, Abp. Alcaraz, and Bp. Lily Homily by Patriarch Craig Bates First
Reading: Isaiah 42 : 1 – 9
Second Reading: Hebrews 5 : 1 – 10
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 99 : 1 – 9
Gospel Reading: John 20 : 19- 23
BELIEVING IN JESUS (WHO HE IS)
(A RECAPITULATION BASED ON THE HOMILY OF +ABP. CRAIG BATES)
The whole community of the Charismatic Episcopal Church are one in the celebration of the sacrificial life offered by our consecrated bishops; + Bp. Raymundo Abogatal, +Abp. Ricardo Alcaraz, and Bp. Gene Lily. Their commitments are manifestations of God’s love shown in their everyday life!
Though Primate Dick Alcaraz is deeply missed, the church will be forever grateful to God for his life, his love for his people; his living legacy left to us.
In today’s teaching, Patriarch emphasizes the simple yet powerful nature of our Lord Jesus Christ. It can be concluded in three (3) key points:
- Jesus is the Eternal Life. Believing Him as Son of God, assures us of eternal life. “We don’t have eternal life with what we do or what we accomplished; nor we don’t have eternal condemnation because we didn’t do or accomplished nothing.”
“We don’t do anything to get forgiveness; we receive it! When we confess our sins, we receive forgiveness already; same way, we receive love from God! Forgiveness exists because of the cross. We were made and created by God to live in that love; we were made and created to love other people. There is nothing we can do to earn God’s love. He loves us fully and completely from the start!” He said further, that it is not impossible not to love God and our neighbour; for despite the brokenness, the hurt, the strife…at the end of the day, we keep His commandments, and we choose to love and forgive.
- He is the Eucharist. Jesus himself revealed who He is in the Eucharist! We may not understand intellectually the act of breaking and receiving the bread and wine; how it became His body and blood; but every time we do that, we open our hearts to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. “Even when we doubt, we lack faith…we need to walk with our heart. The more we practice the Eucharist, the more we know and understand and become certain that one day, what it means, will come to our very core of who we are, or who I am in Christ. In communion, we discover we can abide with Him. You and I would no place to go, but when we choose to believe in God, there is no turning back or turning away. We simply find that joy of eternal life with Him because we know who He is.
- He should be manifested. Finding now that eternal joy, “we have now eternal relationship with Him, and that we should share the act of that incredible love of Jesus in prayer and in everyday life. Prayer is evidence that God exists. When we pray, we’re saying, “I know Him”. Every day is a continuous process of knowing Him. He is in the elders of our churches, in the men and women, in the poor and suffering and especially in children. Patriarch urged us to see these sacrificial life of our bishops as well, manifested in us!
Lastly, +Abp. Bates ask for prayers from us, for him to go back Philippines again and be able to celebrate the great gifts of God with our bishops and churches.
MERCY DE LA CRUZ-ESPIRITU
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