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Thursday, 31 May 2018

Friday, June 1, 2018 - If the Lord were to come to the tree of your life, would he find fruit or only leaves?


To read the texts click on the texts:1 Peter 4:7-13; Mk 11:11-26

In the first part of today’s text Mark uses what is know as a “sandwich construction”. This means that he begins narrating an incident, interrupts it by another incident, which is completed, and then the first incident, which was begun and left incomplete, is completed. There are various reasons for the use of this technique.

Here, Mark begins by narrating what is known as the cursing of the fig tree (11:12-14). Only Mark tells us that it was not the season for figs and yet, when Jesus did not find any fruit on the tree he cursed the tree. It is the only 'miracle' that occurs within the Jerusalem section of the Gospel and the fact that it destroys nature does not fit the pattern of the other miracles of Jesus, which make people whole. Mark wants his readers; therefore to see the symbolic character of the miracle of the cursing of the fig tree and associate its fate with the fate of the Temple, which is also not producing the fruit, at is meant to produce. 

Mark keeps in suspense what happens to the fig tree till much later (11:20-21), after he has narrated the incident that he places in the middle of the sandwich. This is what is known as the Cleansing of the Temple (11:15-19). It is an incident that is narrated by all the four Gospels though John narrates it quite differently from the manner in which the Synoptics do and even within the Synoptics there are slight differences. Mark is the only one of the evangelists who tells us that Jesus would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple which indicates that for Mark Jesus has the power to determine what activity is proper to the Temple. The teaching of Jesus is a combination of two Old Testament texts Isaiah 56:7 and Jeremiah 7:11. The chief priests and scribes take affront when they hear about this incident and look for a way to kill Jesus.

Mark then continues the first incident (the cursing of the fig tree) and completes it (11:20-21). The fig tree has indeed withered. This is what will happen to the Temple if it continues in the way of the fig tree, namely if it does not produce the fruit required of it.

Peter is amazed that the fig tree has withered and comments on it (11:22). This gives an opportunity for the Marcan Jesus to teach has disciples about prayer (11:23-25). The first saying about the mountain being thrown into the sea (11:23) brings out forcefully through a dramatic metaphor what is possible for one whose faith does not waver. The second saying (11:24) applies to the community the general principle of the previous verse, namely that there must be absolute confidence in prayer. The final saying (11:25) speaks about forgiveness as a condition to receive the forgiveness of God. This is because if there is unforgiveness in one’s heart it is not possible to receive the forgiveness of God. The unforgiveness acts a block to receiving God’s forgiveness.

Most doctors today are convinced that the larger majority of the illnesses we suffer are psychosomatic. This means that because our mind/heart/internal (psyche) is affected, our body/external (soma) will also be affected. Keeping grudges, harbouring feelings of revenge, nurturing anger and not forgiving are sure ways to spoil one’s health. Illnesses like acidity, hyper tension, fistula, piles, stress diabetes, high blood pressure and many others can be controlled and even avoided if one removes all the negative from one’s heart and mind.

Friday, June 1, 2018 - 1 Peter 4:7-13; Mk 11:11-26

Friday, June 1, 2018 - 1 Peter 4:7-13; Mk 11:11-26


  1. Which tree did Jesus see in leaf?

  2. Pear
    Fig
    Sycamore

  3. To which place did Jesus go when her entered Jerusalem?

  4. The market place
    The temple
    The synagogue

  5. What does Peter say love covers?

  6. The faults of others
    A multitude of sins
    The one who is love

  7. How many letters of Peter are found in the New Testament

  8. Two
    Three
    One

  9. With whom did Jesus go to Bethany?

  10. Peter, James and John
    The twelve
    Philip and Andrew

  11. What did Jesus find on the tree when he came near it?

  12. Fruits
    His disciples
    Leaves

  13. Which Old Testament prophets did quote when he cleansed the temple?

  14. Jeremiah and Hosea
    Isaiah and Jeremiah
    Isaiah and Samuel

  15. What does Peter ask his readers not to be surprised at?

  16. The end of the world
    The fiery ordeal
    Their own foolishness

  17. Who were looking for a way to kill Jesus?

  18. The high priest and scribes
    The chief priests and scribes
    The Pharisees and scribes

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. The fig tree represents the temple and today the Church
    The Temple/Church must produces the fruits of God in all seasons
    The Temple of our lives must also bear fruit worthy of God

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Thursday, May 31, 2018 - The Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary - Mary visited Elizabeth to share the good news with her. With whom will you share the good news today?


To read the texts click on the texts: Zeph 3:14-18; Rom 12:9-16; Lk 1:39-56



The Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary to her kinswoman Elizabeth was begun by St. Bonaventure among the Franciscans in 1263 C.E, and became a universal Feast in 1389 C.E., during the papacy of Urban VI. It celebrates the visit of Mary to Elizabeth after the angel Gabriel announced to Mary that she would be the mother of Jesus.

The call of the first reading chosen for the feast of today is a call to rejoice. This rejoicing is for many reasons. The first of these is that judgement has been taken away. The Lord is now in the midst of his people. This being in the midst of his people is confirmed by the Gospel text of today where Jesus is already in the womb of Mary and so among his people. There will be no more reproach or condemnation. Now, there will only be unconditional love.

This unconditional love is confirmed both by the physical act of Mary’s visit to her kinswoman Elizabeth and also the Magnificat which is attributed to Mary. In this hymn, Mary extols God’s greatness because God has indeed redeemed his people. The verbs that are used in the hymn are all in the past tense though signify future actions. This is an indication of the faith and confidence that Mary has in God who she is confident will accomplish all that he has promised.

Though on the surface level the Visitation may appear to be Mary’s concern and love for her cousin, on the deeper level it means that Mary wants to share with Elizabeth what God has done in each of their lives and through the sons to be born of them, what God will do in the world.

Thursday, May 31, 2018 - The visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary - Zeph 3:14-18; Rom 12:9-16; Lk 1:39-56

Thursday, May 31, 2018 - the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary - Zeph 3:14-18; Rom 12:9-16; Lk 1:39-56


  1. Whose house did Mary enter when she went with haste?

  2. John's house
    Zechariah's house
    Peter's house

  3. In whom does Mary's spirit rejoice?

  4. In her own merit
    In God her Saviour
    In her sinlessness

  5. Which ancestor does Mary mention in her hymn of praise?

  6. Isaac
    Abraham
    Joseph

  7. What happened when Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting?

  8. She was stunned
    The child leaped in her womb
    She was speechless

  9. For how long did Mary stay with Elizabeth?

  10. Six months
    Three months
    Four months

  11. Whom has the Lord brought down from their thrones?

  12. The powerful
    The lowly
    The innocent

  13. How does Paul say the Christian must respond to suffering?

  14. With anger
    With patience
    With hopelessness

  15. What does Paul want Christian love to be?

  16. Conditional
    Genuine
    Artificial

  17. How will the Lord exult over Jerusalem according to Zephaniah?

  18. With loud singing
    With sound of the harp
    With silence

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. Mary believed the word of the Lord and she is a model of faith
    Mary is our intercessor and guide
    If we respond like Mary Jesus can be revealed every day

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Tuesday, 29 May 2018

Wednesday, May 30, 2018 - How would you define honour? What does your definition say about you?


To read the texts click on the texts:1 Peter 1:18-25; Mk 10:32-45

In this pericope Jesus predicts for the third and final time that he is to suffer and die and be raised (10:32-34). It is the most detailed of all the three. Here too, like in the case of the two previous Passion and resurrection predictions there is a misunderstanding. This time it is on the part of James and John who want places of honour in the kingdom. In response to Jesus’ question of whether they are able to drink the cup that he must drink and be baptised in the baptism with which he must be baptised, they say that they are able. Jesus promises that they will indeed drink the cup and undergo the baptism, but cannot he cannot determine the position of places in the kingdom. That role is left only to the Father.

The other disciples who become agitated with the request of the brothers are in the same boat as they are, and once again Jesus has to teach them the way of the kingdom. Only those willing to serve others can hope to have a place of honour in the kingdom. The last verse of this section points to the Son of man who has come to show the way to the kingdom through his service.

The attitude of the ten towards James and John may be termed as confrontation. This often happens when one desires what the other person is striving for and so feels jealous and envious of the other. It also leads to backbiting and thinking ill of the other like the ten did in the case of James and John. An alternative to confrontation is the attitude of “care-frontation” which would involve challenging the other person to rise above trifles and that, which is not necessary. It arises out of a genuine concern for the good of the person.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018 - 1 Peter 1:18-25; Mk 10:32-45

Wednesday, May 30, 2018 - 1 Peter 1:18-25; Mk 10:32-45


  1. Where was Jesus going with his disciples?

  2. Galilee
    Jerusalem
    Capernaum

  3. Whom did Jesus take aside to speak of his passion, death and resurrection?

  4. James and John
    His disciples
    Peter and Andrew

  5. To whom would the chief priests and scribes hand Jesus?

  6. The high priest
    The Gentiles
    Herod

  7. From which prophet does Peter quote in the reading of today?

  8. Isaiah
    Joel
    Jeremiah

  9. Whom came forward with a request for places on the right and left of Jesus?

  10. The mother of the sons of Zebedee
    Peter and Andrew
    James and John

  11. With what were Christians ransomed from the futile ways of their ancestors?

  12. Gold
    The precious blood of Christ
    Silver

  13. Why does Jesus say the son of man came?

  14. To be served
    To serve
    To be first

  15. What must the one who wishes to be great be in Jesus' scheme?

  16. Servant
    Master
    First

  17. How does Peter say Christians born anew?

  18. Perishable seed
    Imperishable seed
    By water

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. In Christianity the first must be willing to be last
    Authority means service if one is a true disciple of Jesus
    The first must be slave of all

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Monday, 28 May 2018

Tuesday, May 29, 2018 - What is the thing, which is the person, what is that event which is preventing you from working for the kingdom? Will you give it up today?


To read the texts click on the texts:1 Peter 1:10-16; Mk 10:28-31

In response to the statement of Jesus that it is impossible for the rich to enter the kingdom of God, Peter states that they as disciples have left everything to follow Jesus. The response of Jesus is a reassurance that what they have given up will be replaced by the new bond that they will share with each other both in this life and in the life to come. It must also be noted that the Marcan Jesus also mentions persecutions as being part of the lot of the disciples. These are to be expected by anyone who is a true witness of the Gospel. 

The last verse of this pericope speaks about the reversal of status that will be part of the kingdom indicating that that the values of the world do not apply in the kingdom.

When we sacrifice something for a cause we must realise that our reward must be the sacrifice itself. The reason why we sacrifice is because we believe in the cause, whether it is helping the poor, reaching out to the needy or any other and we must gain our satisfaction from the understanding that someone has lived more fully because of the sacrifice that we have made.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018 - 1 Peter 1:10-16; Mk 10:28-31

Tuesday, May 28, 2018 - 1 Peter 1:10-16; Mk 10:28-31


  1. What will the disciples receive in the age to come?

  2. Land and houses
    Brothers and sisters
    Eternal life

  3. What did the Spirit of Christ testify to the prophets?

  4. Christ's exaltation
    Christ's suffering and subsequent glory
    Christ's suffering

  5. Who said to Jesus that they have given up everything?

  6. James
    Peter
    John

  7. For what does Peter ask his readers to prepare their minds?

  8. Action
    Battle
    Good thoughts

  9. How many fold will the disciples receive what they have given up?

  10. Three fold
    Two fold
    One hundred fold

  11. Which Old Testament book does Peter quote?

  12. Leviticus
    Numbers
    Genesis

  13. Who does Jesus say will be first?

  14. The last
    The disciples
    Children

  15. Who longed to glimpse the things revealed to Christians but were unable?

  16. Angels
    Sinners
    The righteous

  17. On what must Christians set their hope?

  18. On their merit
    On grace
    On righteousness

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. To follow Jesus, we must be ready to give up everything
    Following Jesus is a daily choice
    We are privileged because we are followers of Jesus

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Sunday, 27 May 2018

Monday, May 28, 2018 - Do I possess riches or do riches possess me? Do I use things or do things use me?


To read the texts click on the texts:1 Peter 1:3-9; Mk 10:17-27

This text is made up of two parts. The first is the story of the rich man who is unable to accept Jesus’ invitation to discipleship (10:17-22) and the second part contains the sayings of Jesus on the danger of riches (10:23-27).

The rich man addresses Jesus as “Good teacher” and asks what he must do to inherit eternal life. Jesus shifts the focus from himself and makes God the focus. In Mark, Jesus cites six of the commandments of the Decalogue (Ex 20:12-17; Deut 5:16-21). 

The response of the rich man is to affirm that he has followed all of these. Only in Mark does Jesus look at the man and love him. This love results in the issuance of an invitation: the invitation to follow Jesus. The invitation is to forego even the privilege of alms giving for the sake of sharing Jesus’ life style by depending on god while at the same time proclaiming his kingdom. The rich man is devoted to God’s word, but cannot bring himself to accept the invitation. His riches become an obstacle to his following.

After his departure, Jesus turns to the disciples to instruct them on the danger of riches. Jesus uses a metaphor of a camel trying to pass through the eye of a needle. Even this impossible as it might be to imagine is possible and easier than for a rich person to enter the kingdom. The amazement of the disciples while understandable also brings out powerfully the obstacle that riches can pose to seeing rightly.

We are living in a world, which keeps calling us to possess more and more. We are bombarded from every side with advertisements inviting us to be owners of land, property, houses, and electronic and other goods. While we must use things and plan properly for own future and the future of our children, we need to be careful that we do not become so obsessed with the future that we forget to live in the present.

Monday, May 28, 2018 - 1 Peter 1:3-9; Mk 10:17-27

Monday, May 28, 2018 - 1 Peter 1:3-9; Mk 10:17-27


  1. Who approached Jesus with the question on eternal life?

  2. A rich young man
    A rich man
    A trader

  3. How many of the commandments does Jesus cite?

  4. Four
    Five
    Six

  5. How does Peter say faith is tested?

  6. By the devil
    By temptations
    By fire

  7. What is faith more precious than?

  8. Silver
    Gold
    Platinum

  9. Where does Peter say the inheritance is kept for believers?

  10. In a golden jar
    In heaven
    In a palace made of gold

  11. Why did the rich man go away sad?

  12. Because the disciples did not let him come near Jesus
    Because Jesus insulted him
    Because he had many possessions

  13. How many letters of Peter are in the New Testament?

  14. Two
    One
    Three

  15. What according to Peter is the outcome of faith?

  16. Salvation
    Grace
    Peace

  17. Which animal does Jesus mention in the Gospel text?

  18. Elephant
    Camel
    Ox

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. It is possible that we may be used by the things we possess
    Riches can be an obstacle to God
    We must not allow ourselves to be controlled by our riches

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Saturday, 26 May 2018

Sunday, May 27, 2018 - Trinity Sunday - Love and unity in diversity


To read the texts click on the texts: Dt 4:32-34; 39-40; Rom8:14-17; Mt 28:16-20

Trinity Sunday is a special Sunday in the Church year; it has been celebrated since 1334 when Pope John XXII fixed it as the Sunday after Pentecost. It is a Sunday which is not tied to any special event. We do not have to remember any special events or rituals. Instead, it is a day on which we remember God; it is a day to focus our hearts and minds on the mystery, and also on the reality, that is God. It is a bit like a birthday, when all we do is celebrate a particular person and their presence with us.

The French writer, aviator, and novelist, Antoine de Saint-Exupery, once said: “If you want to build a ship, don’t herd people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.” The Easter celebrations ended with Pentecost. Through the Trinity Sunday the Church is inviting us to return to Ordinary Time, by presenting us with the big picture of the “endless immensity of the sea” we call God.

When we are personally caught up in the mystery of the love of God, then we shall find the rationale and the motivation to work on our personal growth in Christian living. It is only when we experience the love of our God, who is a personal God that we can live out fully our Christian calling.

The Trinity is not an explanation of God, though many have tried to explain what the Trinity means. It is a description of what we know about God, albeit contradictory and contrary to logic as we know it. One good way to understand the Trinity, even if inadequately, would be to understand the Father, Son and Spirit as Lover, Beloved, and the Flow of Love between them that has constantly flowed since before time began. Through the Incarnation, the Beloved came to dwell among us. When we stand in the place of the Beloved, when we accept the offer to become the adopted sons and daughters of God, we also become the Beloved of God, and share in this same Flow of Love. However, even this way of understanding falls short and we must be careful not to reduce the mystery to these explanations. The Church teaches us that God is three persons in one nature; that Father, Son, and Holy Spirit together are God. Beyond that is nothing more than the speculation of our tiny minds.

The first reading of today insists that, though understanding the mystery of God is beyond human comprehension, our God is a God who has immersed himself in human history. He is a God, who spoke to the people of Israel, and a God who translated that word into action by redeeming them from slavery and bringing them into the freedom of their own land.

However, this immersion was through human intermediaries. Since God wanted to show his love and care for the whole of humanity to the greatest extent possible, he made himself visible when he took on human form, being born as Jesus Christ. This was not all. He went even further when he embraced the Cross willingly and whole heartedly to show that there would never be any limited to his love. His death on the Cross, however, was only the beginning of new life. He was raised and, after his resurrection, gave to his disciples both a commission to continue to do his work on earth and the gift of the Spirit to enable them to do so.

The commission in Matthew is preceded by a revelation and followed by a promise; all three are prefaced by the universalizing “all”. The revelation is that Jesus has been given “all” authority. The commission is that the disciples must make disciples of “all” nations. The promise is that Jesus will be with his disciples “all” the days. He will do this in and through his Spirit.

It is this Spirit, Paul tells us in the second reading of today, which enables us to recognize God as beloved Father or Mother and to realize that, just as the Trinity is united by the bond of love, we, too, are called to that same union. It is the Spirit which gives us the grace to recognize that every human being is a child of God and that, because this is so, we are all brothers and sisters of one human family. It is the Spirit which enables us to accept diversity, knowing deep in our hearts that there is an underlying fundamental and basic unity.

Thus, the feast of the Trinity celebrates freedom, love, community, diversity, and inclusiveness. God does not exist in isolated individualism but in a community of relationships. In other words, God is not a loner or a recluse. This means that a Christian in search of Godliness must shun every tendency to isolationism and individualism. The ideal Christian spirituality is not that of flight from the world. It is not a spirituality that runs away from contact with other people and society. Rather, it is an immersion into the world with a view to transforming sorrow to joy, injustice to justice, negatives to positives, darkness to light and, death to life.

There is no one who is outside the kingdom of God. There is no “us” and “them”. There is only “we” And, we are all connected. The Trinity embraces diversity. We are not asked to be clones of Jesus. We are asked to offer our unique gifts for the good of the community. We are not asked to be the same. We are asked to seek unity even in diversity.

Sunday, May 27, 2018 - Trinity Sunday - Dt 4:32-34; 39-40; Rom 8:14-17; Mt 28:16-20

Sunday, May 27, 2018 - Trinity Sunday - Dt 4:32-34; 39-40; Rom 8:14-17; Mt 28:16-20


  1. Who does Paul say are children of God?

  2. Those who hear God's voice
    Those who are led by the spirit
    Those who obey him

  3. What spirit have Christians received?

  4. The spirit of fear
    The spirit of adoption
    The spirit of slavery

  5. From where does Moses say God spoke?

  6. The heavens
    The fire
    The clouds

  7. Which nation is mentioned by name by Moses?

  8. Israel
    Egypt
    Assyria

  9. Who directed the disciples to the mountain?

  10. Jesus
    An angel
    The Holy Spirit

  11. Where was the mountain to which the eleven disciples went?

  12. Galilee
    Jerusalem
    Nazareth

  13. Till when did Jesus promise to be with his disciples?

  14. Till they were successful
    Till they could stand on their own
    Till the end of the age

  15. Which feast do we celebrate today?

  16. The Trinity - The Father, Son and Holy Spirit
    Pentecost
    Corpus Christi

  17. How does the spirit in believers address God?

  18. Abba, Father
    With fear and trembling
    Hesitantly

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. The Trinity is an example of Unity even in diversity
    The Trinity is three persons one God
    The Trinity is a mystery

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Friday, 25 May 2018

Saturday, May 25, 2018 - Has your narrow mindedness led you to pigeonhole God and place him in a small compartment? Will you realise that God is much bigger than you can ever imagine him to be?


To read the texts click on the texts:
To read the texts click on the texts: James 5:13-20; Mk 10:13-16

The text is really about the kingdom of God and what kind of people can expect to be a part of it. When people bring children to Jesus, the disciples try to stop them from doing so showing once again that they have not been able to understand what Jesus and the kingdom are all about. The kingdom is for everyone and is inclusive not exclusive. 

Jesus is emphatic in his response to their action that the kingdom does indeed belong to children and that anyone who does not become like a child can never hope to enter it. The point is not so much that one will be excluded but that one will exclude oneself. The kingdom is a gift and must be received as a gift. No human power can create or force it. The kingdom of God will come when we behave like little children.

A childlike attitude means not only that one will be humble and spontaneous as children are, but also that one will acknowledge like a child has to do, his/her dependence. Many of us like to be independent and for some asking a favour of someone else is extremely difficult because they do not want to acknowledge their dependence on that person and so be indebted. We must realise that we are all interconnected and while we are dependent on each other in some way or other, we are primarily dependent on God.

Saturday, May 26, 2018 - James 5:13-20; Mk 10:13-16

Saturday, May 26, 2018 - James 5:13-20; Mk 10:13-16


  1. Who spoke sternly to the people who were bringing children to Jesus?

  2. Peter
    The disciples
    James and John

  3. For how long did it not rain when the prophet prayed?

  4. Six years and three months
    Three years and six months
    Three years and five months

  5. What does James say those who are suffering ought to do?

  6. Rest
    Pray
    Sleep

  7. What did Jesus do when the children were brought to him?

  8. Ignored them
    Took them in his arms, laid his hands on them and blessed them.
    Prayed with them

  9. Which prophet does James mention?

  10. Elisha
    Elijah
    Nathan

  11. What does James say the cheerful ought to do?

  12. Sing songs of praise
    Dance for joy
    Cheer others

  13. What must the sick be anointed with?

  14. Perfume
    Onitment
    Oil

  15. To whom does Jesus say the kingdom of God belongs?

  16. Children
    The Innocent
    The righteous

  17. How does James define the prayer of the righteous?

  18. Producing fruit
    Powerful and effective
    Exceptional

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. We must become like children to enter the kingdom of God
    God is bigger than anything we can imagine
    The kingdom is a gift from God and we cannot merit it

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Thursday, 24 May 2018

Friday, May 25, 2018 - Am I faithful to the commitment that I have made in my state of life?


To read the texts click on the texts: James 5:9-12; Mk 10:1-12

The school of Hillel (60 BCE – 20 CE), permitted divorce literally for any cause – even if the wife spoiled a dish or if her husband found another fairer than his wife. However the school of Shammai (50 BCE – 30 CE) permitted it only for adultery.

In Deut 24:1-4 the institution of divorce is taken for granted, & concerns only the procedure to be followed and that after the woman has married a second time, the first husband cannot remarry her. The Law of divorce was a concession not a commandment.

The question of the Pharisees is asked by them in order to test Jesus. This attitude becomes clear when in their response to Jesus’ question about what the law says on divorce, they seem to know it quite clearly. 
In his response to them, Jesus quotes Gen 1:27 and 2:24 as arguments for a permanent state of unity created by marriage. Jesus goes beyond the Law and to Creation. Divorce according to the law of creation would be like trying to divide one person into two. Mark’s formula is a near total prohibition of divorce. 
Mt 19:9 contains the exception contained in 5:32 – unchastity (Porneia, Hebrew-Zenût = prostitution) understood in the sense of an incestuous union due to marriage in their forbidden degrees of kinship (Lev 18:6-18). Such a union would not be true marriage at all and would not require a divorce but annulment.

Many families today are breaking up and there are various reasons why this is happening. However, it seems that one of the important reasons why marriages and families break up is because of selfishness. Due to this there is unwillingness on the part of the members to adjust with each other or the inability to understand. Each wants to go his/her own way and do his/her own thing. Concern for the others needs and feelings seem to be on the wane. Psychologists today are quite convinced that a healthy family background is an absolute requirement for the healthy growth of a child and a happy child is the result of a happy family.

Friday, May 25, 2018 - James 5:9-12; Mk 10:1-12

Friday, May 25, 2018 - James 5:9-12; Mk 10:1-12


  1. Which group came to test Jesus?

  2. The Sadducees
    The Pharisees
    The chief priests

  3. Who allowed the Jews to write a certificate of dismissal and divorce?

  4. Aaron
    Moses
    Joshua

  5. Who does James say is standing at the door?

  6. A stranger
    A guest
    The judge

  7. What does James ask his readers not to do by heaven or earth?

  8. Gamble
    Swear
    Lie

  9. Who asked Jesus about the question of divorce in the house?

  10. His disciples
    The crowds
    Simon Peter

  11. Whom does James point to as an example of suffering and patience?

  12. The kings
    The prophets
    The saints

  13. Whose specific endurance does James point to?

  14. Abraham
    Job
    Jacob

  15. When the crowds gathered what did Jesus do?

  16. He fed them
    He taught them
    He cured those who were sick

  17. Which old testament book does Jesus quote to support his argument against divorce?

  18. Leviticus
    Genesis
    Deuteronomy

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. Each of us must be faithful to the choice we have made in life
    Divorce destroys the family
    Fidelity is one of the keys to a happy marriage

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Thursday, May 24, 2018 - Our Lady of the way - Will you like Mary, let it done ‘in and through you’ by God?


To read the texts click on the texts: Prov 4:10-18; Lk 2:15-19



In 1537 St. Ignatius hired a small house near a small church on a narrow street in Rome. The Church was named as Our Lady of the Way, because of a picture of Our Lady in the church and its proximity to the narrow street. Here St. Ignatius celebrated Mass and prayed with his companions.

For many years ‘La Strada’ (the wayside) was the ‘heart of the Society’. It witnessed the long hours of prayer of St. Ignatius, his discussions, meditations, and reflections with his companions. The Constitutions were written here. The first novices were trained by St. Ignatius here. Hundreds of letters went from here to St. Ignatius’ companions round the world. Fr. Cordacio, a wealthy and influential diocesan priest who became a Jesuit used all his money and influence to buy the rented house and secure the Church through Pope Paul III for the Society. In course of years the ‘Gesu’ Church and other buildings came up. All this through the powerful intercession of Mary, Queen and Mother of the Society whose same picture is venerated in a special chapel in the ‘Gesu’ and who is honoured with today’s feast, granted to the Society of Jesus by Pope Leo XIII in 1900.

The Gospel text chosen for the memorial of the feast concerns the response of the Shepherds to the revelation that they have received. It also concerns the response of Mary. While all are amazed at the Shepherds’ report of the things that have taken place, Mary “treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart” (2:19). Mary is unable to make logical sense of all the events that have taken place in her life. The annunciation, the pregnancy of Elizabeth, the birth of John the Baptist and the birth of her son are all mysteries to her. Her response to these mysterious events is to ‘wonder’. She tries to make as much sense as she can of these events. Even as she does so, she remains the servant of the Lord, his handmaid, who let it be done in and through her.

There are times in our lives when we cannot understand the meaning of events that take place. At times like these we respond in a variety of ways. If the event that occurs is not what we expected, we might lose faith in God, respond with anger or simply give up and give in. The Response of Mary is a challenge to us of how we also can respond. We might not always receive logical answers to the questions that we ask, but if we remain God’s servants and let it be done in and through us, we will find that peace which only the Lord can give.

Thursday, May 24, 2018 - Am I a part time Christian? Am I a fair weather Christian?


To read the texts click on the texts: James 5:1-6; Mk 9:41-50

This pericope contains a series of sayings against those who cause scandal and other to sin. Anyone who scandalises or causes someone else to stumble is a danger to those who believe. 

Jesus’ language here seems harsh, but he is not asking individuals to maim parts of their body. Rather he is using these striking metaphors to drive home powerfully the point he wants to make, namely: that no one and nothing must be allowed to compromise the kingdom. The metaphors reflect how important striving for the kingdom is. A disciple of Jesus must be prepared to forego anything for the sake of the kingdom.

Our behaviour in public sometimes results in leading others away from God and Jesus. Those who see our behaviour and know that we are disciples of Jesus are not inspired to follow him. Christ today is made visible and tangible through the words and actions of those of us who believe in him and so we have an enormous responsibility to make him known and draw others to him. People must be able to see him in us.

Thursday, May 24, 2018 - Our Lady of the way - Prov 4:10-18; Lk 2:15-19

Thursday, May 24, 2018 - Our Lady of the Way -Prov 4:10-18; Lk 2:15-19


  1. Where did the shepherds after the angel left them?

  2. To heaven
    To Bethlehem
    To Jerusalem

  3. Whom did the shepherds find with the child?

  4. The wise men
    Mary and Joseph
    Herod

  5. From which book is the first reading of today taken?

  6. Psalms
    Proverbs
    Luke

  7. Where did the shepherds find the child lying?

  8. On a soft bed
    In a manger
    On a cushion

  9. Where did the angels go after leaving the shepherds?

  10. To see Jesus
    To heaven
    To other shepherds

  11. Who cannot sleep unless they have done wrong?

  12. Evildoers
    Merchants
    Traders

  13. What bread do the evildoers eat?

  14. Brown bread
    While bread
    The bread of wickedness

  15. What wine doe the evildoers drink?

  16. Red wine
    The wine of violence
    White wine

  17. How many chapters does the book of Proverbs contain?

  18. Thirty two
    Thirty one
    Thirty

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. Like Mary we must be able to say "Let it be done to me"
    Mary is a model of faith
    Mary is a powerful intercessor

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Thursday, May 24, 2018 - James 5:1-6; Mk 9:41-50

Thursday, May 24, 2018 - James 5:1-6; Mk 9:41-50


  1. What is the action for those who are stumbling blocks?

  2. They will be punished
    A millstone will be hung around their necks
    They will be parised

  3. Which parts of the body are mentioned in the Gospel of today?

  4. Hand, foot and eye
    Hand, foot and ear
    Hand, foot and tongue

  5. Whom does James address in the first verse today?

  6. Rich persons
    Sinners
    The righteous

  7. How will everyone be tested?

  8. They will be tempted three times
    They will be salted with fire
    They will be possessed

  9. What has happened to the clothes of the rich?

  10. They have become old
    They are moth eaten
    They are too luxurious

  11. Who have the rich condemned and murdered?

  12. Their enemies
    The righteous one
    Their friends

  13. What has happened to the riches of the rich?

  14. They have doubled
    They have rotted
    They have remained the same

  15. Whose cries have reached the ears of the Lord?

  16. The ungodly
    Labourers and harvesters
    The rich

  17. What has happened to the gold and silver of the rich?

  18. It has been stolen
    It has rusted
    It has been used wisely by them

  19. What is the message of the readings of today?

  20. Our God is a God of justice
    We must give each his/her due
    To be a Christian means to be just

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Wednesday, May 23, 2018 - Do I feel threatened by people whom I think are more talented than I am? Will I rest secure in my selfhood? Will I glory in my selfhood?


To read the texts click on the texts: James 4:13-17; Mk 9:38-40

John comes to Jesus hoping to be commended for stopping an exorcist who was using the name of Jesus to exorcise. In his response Jesus advocates openness and allows anyone who wants to exorcise in his name to be free to do so. Since the man is using Jesus name, it is clear that he is not against Jesus and so will not speak ill of Jesus. Since he is not against, he is for Jesus.

One of the many qualities of Jesus that stood out in his life and mission was the quality of openness. He was willing to accommodate and believe even in those whom others had given up on. This is shown in his call of Levi/Matthew the tax collector, and his reaching out to sinners and outcasts. 

In our understanding of Jesus we sometimes do him a disservice when we become too parochial and narrow-minded and imagine that he is the exclusive property of those of us who are baptised. We communicate this attitude to others when we reject their symbols of God and worse treat them as idol worshippers. We are being called through the attitude of Jesus in the text of today to make him available to all with our openness and acceptance of others and of their way of relating to God.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018 - James 4:13-17; Mk 9:38-40

Wednesday, May 23, 2018 - James 4:13-17; Mk 9:38-40


  1. What is anyone who know the right to do and does not do it guilty of?

  2. Procrastination
    Sin
    Adultery

  3. Why was the attempt to stop the unnamed exorcist made?

  4. Because he was not following Jesus
    Because he was taking advantage of Jesus
    Because he was talking ill of Jesus

  5. With what does James compare those who make plans for tomorrow?

  6. Mountains
    Mist
    Rivers

  7. Who came to Jesus to complain about the unnamed exorcist?

  8. Peter
    James
    John

  9. How long does the person who makes plans for tomorrow expect to be in that town?

  10. A few days
    A few months
    A year

  11. What was the unnamed exorcist doing?

  12. Abusing the disciples
    Casting out demons in the name of Jesus
    Making money for himself

  13. How many Chapters does the letter of James contain?

  14. Five
    Four
    Six

  15. What is Jesus' response to the unnamed exorcist who was casting out demons in his name?

  16. Acceptance and openness
    He was upset
    He tries to stop him

  17. What is the message of the readings of today?

  18. Inclusiveness
    Jesus is not narrow minded or parochial
    We must be as open as Jesus is

Thanks for taking the Quiz. I hope it makes the word of God more relevant. Let me know on errolsj@gmail.com. Suggestions are always welcome.

Monday, 21 May 2018

Audio Reflections of Tuesday, May 22, 2018

To hear the Audio Reflections of Tuesday, May 22, 2018 click HERE

Tuesday, May 22, 2018 - The world seems to be saying, “If you are not No. 1, you are NO ONE. Jesus, however, is clear in what he says: If you want to be No. 1, be NO ONE.


To read the texts click on the texts: James 4:1-10; Mk 9:30-37

The text of today contains the second Passion, death and resurrection prediction that Jesus makes on the way to Jerusalem and Jesus’ explanation of his way of life to his disciples after they misunderstand what his kingdom is all about. 

In this second passion and resurrection prediction, there is a change in the verb from the first where the verb was the passive “be killed” (8,31) to the active “they will kill him” (9,31).
If after the first passion and resurrection prediction it is Peter who misunderstands, here, it is the disciples as a whole that misunderstand because "on the way" they are discussing who the greatest among them is, when Jesus is speaking about service and being the least. 

Before his teaching on what discipleship means, Jesus sits down thereby assuming the formal position of a teacher. He speaks first of a reversal of positions and status in the kingdom, and then places before them the example of a child. In the oriental world of Jesus' time, the child was a non-person, and so by this example, Jesus derives home the point that they will have to lose their identity, become non-persons if they want to gain entry into the kingdom.

Authority as understood in Christianity can never be for domination but is always for service. Management experts today are advocating more and more the advantages of using authority for service and leading by example. In this manner the leader can get more out of the ones he/she leads than if he/she tries to dominate.