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" To witness to God's love, as told in the Scriptures, sending us to transform all creation through self-giving and dialogue. "

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New Provincial Superior

New Provincial Superior

On August 27, 2018, the leadership of the SVD Philippines Central Province...

2019 Perpetual Vows

2019 Perpetual Vows

On July 21, 2019, at the Divine Word Seminary in Tagaytay City, eight young...

Investiture of Novices 2019

Investiture of Novices 2019

14 Young men, 11 Filipinos and 3 from Papua New Guinea, were invested with...

First Vows 2019

First Vows 2019

On July 21, 2019, at the Divine Word Seminary Tagaytay City, thirteen...

2019 Common Jubilee Celebration

2019 Common Jubilee Celebration

On September 12, 2019, the SVD Philippines Central Province gathered at the...

Violago Chapel becomes quasi-parish

Violago Chapel becomes quasi-parish

On September 9, 2019 Bishop Honesto Ongtioco of Cubao declared the Violago...

Ordination to the Diaconate

Ordination to the Diaconate

On August 24, 2019, at the Divine Word Seminary in Tagaytay, Bishop Ted...

  • New Provincial Superior

    New Provincial Superior

  • 2019 Perpetual Vows

    2019 Perpetual Vows

  • Investiture of Novices 2019

    Investiture of Novices 2019

  • First Vows 2019

    First Vows 2019

  • 2019 Common Jubilee Celebration

    2019 Common Jubilee Celebration

  • Violago Chapel becomes quasi-parish

    Violago Chapel becomes quasi-parish

  • Ordination to the Diaconate

    Ordination to the Diaconate

Scheduled Activities in the Province

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Mission Statement

VISION

A religious missionary community of priests and brothers inspired by the Holy Triune God, proclaiming the reign of God by sharing intercultural life and mission among ourselves and our dialogue partners, following the example of Saints Arnold Janssen and Joseph Freinademetz

MISSION

To witness to God’s love, as told in the Scriptures, sending us to transform all creation through self-giving and dialogue

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Sunday Reflections

 

27 October Sunday

30th Sunday in Ordinary Time,  

 

The Word

Sir 35,12-14.16-18 / 2 Tim 4,6-8.16-18 / Lk 18,9-14

 

Sir 35, 12-14.16-18

Give to the Most High as he has given to you,

generously, according to your means.

For he is a God who always repays

and will give back to you sevenfold.

But offer no bribes; these he does not accept!

He shows no partiality to the weak

but hears the grievance of the oppressed.

He does not forsake the cry of the orphan,

nor the widow when she pours out her complaint.

Do not the tears that stream down her cheek.

 

2 Tim 4,6-8.16-18

For I am already being poured out like a libation, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith. From now on the crown of righteousness awaits me, which the Lord, the just judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me, but to all who have longed for his appearance.

At my first defense no one appeared on my behalf, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them! But the Lord stood by me and gave me strength, so that through me the proclamation might be completed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was rescued from the lion's mouth. The Lord will rescue me from every evil threat and will bring me safe to his heavenly kingdom. To him be glory forever and ever. Amen.

 

Lk 18,9-14

Jesus then addressed this parable to those who were convinced of their own righteousness and despised everyone else. “Two people went up to the temple area to pray; one was a Pharisee and the other was a tax collector.  The Pharisee took up his position and spoke this prayer to himself, ‘O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of humanity-greedy, dishonest, adulterous-or even like this tax collector.  I fast twice a week, and I pay tithes on my whole income.’

But the tax collector stood off at a distance and would not even raise his eyes to heaven but beat his breast and prayed, ‘O God, be merciful to me a sinner.’

I tell you, the latter went home justified, not the former; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and the one who humbles himself will be exalted.”

 

In other words…

 

I get to accompany our “big boss”, the provincial superior, in most of the congregation’s big events. And it amuses me  that my name gets to be written close to his in tarpaulins or announcements, to receive the perfunctory warm of applause before him and be given the second best seat during meals. Indeed, sticking close to the “boss” gives you that “boss-y” feeling.

 

Today’s Gospel states that Jesus’ listeners were those who were convinced of their own righteousness and despised everyone else. Who were they? Clearly, Jesus was not addressing the Pharisees as one of them was made a villain in his parable. It will be foolhardy to do that. Besides, it is the nature of parables to be backhanded.

The story prior to today’s gospel categorically says that Jesus was addressing his disciples and the one immediately following it has the same disciples acting like some grim body guards rebuking people for bringing their children to Jesus. Thus, it is safe to say that the people referred to as those who were convinced of their own righteousness and despised everyone else were the disciples themselves.

 

This is utterly surprising as we are used to thinking of the disciples as the good guys compared to  the regularly  bamboozled Scribes and Pharisees in Jesus’ speeches. Perhaps, the “boss-y” feeling was getting the better of them as they have been with “The Boss” for some time now (my experience with my boss makes me an expert on this). What is troubling is the fact that immediately after this lesson on humility they would display sheer arrogance by preventing people from bringing their children to Jesus. Small wonder why (specially in the Gospel According to Mark) Jesus would time and time again ask them: Do you still not understand?

 

This is the gospel today. Which on the surface is kind of bad. And it's weird because "Gospel" is supposedly good news! However, upon closer inspection  it is the sort of "bad" that is really ultimately good. The disciples were not angels and were no different from the  scribes and  Pharisees and even  from you  and me. They were self-righteous and proud too. For this reason,  no one, not even the disciples can claim to be fit and worthy of Grace for it  is  fully dependent upon God’s generosity. Grace on us looks like an oversized "Americana" our mama bought in the "ukay-ukay" which we were forced to wear for the prom. It's just too big, too long...too much. Thanks be to God!

– Fr. Dante Barril, SVD 

 

 

 

 

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