What is Freedom?

09-27-2020Pastor LetterFr. Jess Ty

Dear Family of God,

What is freedom?

Freedom is doing what is good. Love is willing the good of the other. Willing or doing evil is deprivation of freedom, in other words, when we choose to sin, we are not acting freely, we are slaves to sin.

This weekend’s reading warns us that it is our final decision for or against God, that is, our choosing to obey Him by doing His will, or our choosing to go against His will, which will decide our eternal reward, or eternal punishment. As free beings, it is we who choose our eternal destiny.

As we do not know the moment death will strike, our only guarantee of dying in God's friendship is to live in that friendship always, saying “Yes” to God in our deeds. We should become men and women who profess our Faith in word and deed, remembering that, "Not all those who say to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but only those who do the will of my Father who is in Heaven" (Matthew 7:21).

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Our Heavenly Reward

09-20-2020Pastor LetterFr. Jess Ty

Dear Family of God,

God does not deal with us “fairly” and it is a good thing! We should be thankful God does not give us what we deserve. The parable this weekend tells us that our Heavenly reward is not something we earn, but rather a free gift. God has made His rewards available to all through Faith in Christ Jesus. Indeed, as Isaiah says: “As high as the heavens are above the earth, so high are my ways above your ways and my thoughts above your thoughts” (Is. 55:9). Heaven is a gift to us by God, it is all about graces that He is willing to give to those who are willing to receive them. Grace is an "undeserved love" that God has shown us through the death and Resurrection of His only Son Jesus Christ.

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A Dangerous Prayer

09-13-2020Pastor LetterFr. Jess Ty

Dear Family of God,

Do you know that the “Lord’s Prayer” is a dangerous prayer?

What I refer to when I say dangerous, is the phrase “forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” We take a risk if we do not forgive others. It is as if we are asking God not to forgive us. If we want to be forgiven, we must first forgive those who have wronged us.

The Book of Sirach says: “Forgive your neighbor’s injustice; then when you pray, your own sins will be forgiven” (Sir. 28:2). When we forgive from the heart then God heals us from past hurts and we are at peace with God, with others, and with ourselves. On the other hand, unforgiveness is selfdestructive, it hinders our growth and robs us of peace.

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Fraternal Correction

09-06-2020Pastor LetterFr. Jess Ty

Dear Family of God,

What is fraternal correction?

Why it is important?

St. Paul said, “Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.” Charity is the fulfilment of the law and our being. God who is love made us for love also, only when we love that we will attain true joy in life. Correcting an erring brother or sister especially when they are young, is a form of love. We care enough for them that we don’t want them to persist in error that will be self-destructive or will lead them to prison.

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Who is a Christian?

08-30-2020Pastor LetterFr. Jess Ty

Dear Family of God,

Who is a Christian?

Christians are followers of Christ, they are called to live their lives in a different way from others around them. Christian discipleship demands honesty, the willingness to suffer (“take up your cross”), generosity (“to offer our bodies as a living sacrifice to God”), and readiness to follow Jesus by obeying his commandment of love. To follow our Lord is to imitate his life in the way He fulfills the Father’s plan, that is, through suffering. His example is left for us to follow, not just listening to it or admiring his great deeds, no, he wants us to do the same.

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The Truth

08-23-2020Pastor LetterFr. Jess Ty

Dear Family of God,

How do we know the truth? It is either by Human Reason or Divine Revelation (Faith) or both, by reason and faith.

How are we certain it is the truth? When it corresponds to reality. We are not acting in truth if we use a knife as screw driver. Both the knife and the screw will be ruined.

Jesus asked: “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” This experience of trying to identify Jesus by human reason alone can be wrong. These people are living with Jesus, but they missed knowing who He is. This teaching is clearly telling us that we need a guide to know who really Jesus is.

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“The Robin and the Sparrow.

08-16-2020Pastor LetterFr. Jess Ty

Dear Family of God,

I often remember a poem that I would like to share with you. It was written by Elizabeth Cheney and is called, “The Robin and the Sparrow."

Said the robin to the sparrow, “I should really like to know, Why these anxious human beings rush about and worry so.” Said the sparrow to the robin, “Friend I think that it must be, That they have no Heavenly Father, Such as cares for you and me.”

In this time of many storms or crisis, we need to pause and remember that that we have a loving Father who wants what is best for us.

We need to renew our trust in Him alone for we know that this world is passing away, one thing necessary is our meaningful relationship with Jesus, who will give us peace, and will lead us to eternal salvation.

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The Irony of Public Opinion

08-09-2020Pastor LetterFr. Clement Attah, VC

One of the things we have had to deal with during this pandemic and the civil unrest in our country is the need to discern what is true and what is false in the conversations that have been going on. We are being bombarded with very strong public opinions about these crises.

We know through common sense that not all public opinion is good and not all is bad either. But we must be aware that most of the times, the motive behind most public opinion is convenience. Because of our flawed human condition, our natural typical response to crisis and the search for truth is to go for the most convenient and most acceptable choice(s). But often times choices made out of convenience and general acceptability do not always solve the problem.

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Chief Miracle Workers

08-02-2020Pastor LetterFr. Jess Ty

Dear Family of God,

In the bible, we hear about a man took a little food and multiplied it in order to feed many.

This happened in 2 Kings 4 and his name was Elisha. That’s right. Elisha.

He was known as one of the chief miracle workers of the Old Testament. He was rightfully held in tremendous esteem by all Jewish people.

He took twenty loaves and through the power of God, he feeds 100 people. Talk about miraculous!

Then, Jesus comes along and in the only miracle that is recorded in all four Gospels (including the Gospel to be read this Sunday), he takes a fourth as many loaves and feeds fifty times more men. (Additionally, he feeds all the women and children present, so the total number could’ve easily doubled that.) And he doesn’t do it through someone else’s power. He IS God. It is HIS power.

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