Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C

First Reading
Exodus 32:7-11,13-14
Moses stands up to God, recalling all of God’s great promises.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 51:3-4,12-13,17,19
Once we are forgiven, we can hope for a new heart and a fresh start.

Second Reading
1 Timothy 1:12-17
Paul proves it’s never too late to repent and serve God.

Gospel Reading
Luke 15:1-32
Jesus responds to those who criticize him for keeping company with the unworthy.

Background on the Gospel Reading

In chapter 15 of Luke’s Gospel, Jesus tells three parables about losing, finding, and rejoicing. The outcasts of society, the taxpayers, and the sinners approach Jesus eager to hear what he has to say. In Luke’s Gospel, hearing is a sign of conversion. The Pharisees and scribes, still suspicious of Jesus, complain about him associating with sinners. So he tells them these three parables.

In the first story, the parable of The Lost Sheep, the shepherd leaves behind the 99 sheep to search for the 1 lost sheep. When he finds it, the shepherd rejoices not alone as in Matthew’s version, but with friends and neighbors. In the same way, God rejoices more over 1 sinner who repents—like the outcasts who have come to hear Jesus—than over the 99 righteous like the Pharisees and scribes.

The second story, about a poor woman who will not stop searching until she finds her lost coin, makes the same point. Why are the Pharisees complaining? They should rejoice when the lost are found.

Finally we come to what is probably the most memorable parable in the Gospels, the story we know as The Prodigal Son. Just as in The Lost Sheep and The Lost Coin, this story (found only in Luke) is really about the seeker. The loving father is at the center of this parable. Even though his son runs off with his father’s inheritance and squanders the money, the father waits for him, hoping for his return. Upon his son’s return, the father, “full of compassion,” runs out to embrace and forgive him before the son can utter one word of repentance. At this point the rejoicing begins.

The parable does not end there. Rather, it makes one more point about the older son’s reaction. This son who never left, just like the Pharisees and scribes who feel they are righteous, refuses to enter his father’s house to join in the rejoicing. He has served his father. He has obeyed him. Perhaps it was not out of love. The father’s response teaches us that God’s care and compassion extend to the righteous and sinner alike. When we are lost, God doesn’t wait for our return. He actively seeks us out. And when the lost are found, how could we not celebrate and rejoice?-loyolapress.com

Pope Francis’ October 2019 Intention

Liturgical Feasts/ Anniversaries/ Observances

(Legend: Ab=Abbot  Ap=Apostle  Pp=Pope  Bp=Bishop  Ch=Children  De=Deacon  Dr=Doctor  Kg=King Ma=Married  Mt=Martyr  Pr=Priest  Qu=Queen Re=Religious Vg=Virgin Fd=Founder, Hm=Hermit)

Oct 01: THERESE OF THE CHILD JESUS** (Vg, Dr))

9th Anniversary of Episcopal Ordination of Archbishop John Wong

Oct 02: THE GUARDIAN ANGELS*

Oct 04: FRANCIS OF ASSISI* (Rl)

Oct 06: 27TH SUNDAY OF THE YEAR

Oct 7: OUR LADY OF THE ROSARY*

Oct 09: Denis (Bp) & Companions (Mts)/John Leonardi (Pr)

Oct 11: John XXIII (Pp)

Oct 13: 28TH SUNDAY OF THE YEAR

Oct 14: Callistus I (Pp, Mt)

Oct 15: TERESA OF JESUS* (Vg, Dr)

12th Anniversary of Episcopal Ordination of Bishop Julius D.Gitom

Oct 16: Hedwig (Rl)/Margaret Mary Alacoque (Vg)

Oct 17: IGNATIUS OF ANTIOCH* (Bp, Mt)

Oct 18: LUKE** (Ev)

Oct 19: John de Brebeuf, Isaac Jogues (Prs) & Companions (Mts)/Paul of the Cross (Pr)

Oct 20: 29TH SUNDAY OF THE YEAR (MISSION SUNDAY)

Oct 22: John Paul II (Pp)

Oct 23: John of Capestrano (Pr)

Oct 24: Anthony Claret (Bp)

Oct 27: 30TH SUNDAY OF THE YEAR

Oct 28: SIMON & JUDE** (APS)

Bishop Sim on devotion of Sacred Heart of Jesus


Bishop Cornelius Sim (3rd left) after his final talk on June 26, 2019, is seen renewing friendship with some young parishioners of SHC whom he had met during his previous visits to the parish, together with Fr Paul Lo ((2nd right), the parish priest.

KOTA KINABALU: Parishioners of Sacred Heart Cathedral (SHC) here were given an opportunity to know and understand the deeper meaning and purpose of their devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus in preparation for their parish feast day celebration on June 27.

This came in the form of a series of three talks presented by Bishop Cornelius Sim of Brunei, on three consecutive nights prior to the feast day at the Cathedral attended by a steady crowd of around 300 each night.

He told Catholics at the SHC on the final night of the talk (June 26) that he was very impressed by their presence in following the talks and expressed the hope that by doing so they had gained an experience of the love of God and a deeper desire to love him in return.

The talks were conducted after a Gospel reading in the midst of a Holy Hour each night, with adoration of the Holy Sacrament and Benediction. They were richly interlaced with biblical and magisterium quotations and teachings.

At the end of the final day of the SHC Triduum, Fr Paul Lo, the parish priest, expressed his thanks and appreciation to Bishop Sim for his talks which he said were very enlightening.

Bishop Sim told the Sacred Heart devotees said the human heart is the most powerful sign of the love of God shown to us through human communication.

“The Sacred Heart of Jesus is the centre of who he is and reveals who God is. The heart of Jesus is the heart of God.”

Throughout his talks, Bishop Sim made references to the experience St Margaret Mary Alacoque of Burgundy, France, who over one-and-a-half years starting from Dec 27, 1673 had visions of Christ and his Sacred Heart.

Jesus Christ had chosen her as an instrument to spread the devotion of his Sacred Heart and (through her) had asked that the feast of the Sacred Heart be established.

In his first talk, Bishop Sim spoke of how the heart of Jesus reaches out to us, has a deep desire to draw us nearer to God and is attracting us towards him.

He explained in his second talk the deeper meaning of the four signs appearing in the image of the Sacred Heart as seen by St Margaret Mary (see picture) – the flame, the wound, the thorns around the heart and the cross above it.

He said the flame represents the warmth, strong power and energy of Christ in attracting his disciples, like the experience of the apostles on Pentecost day when tongues of fire appeared on their heads.

The wound was caused on Jesus on the Cross by the lance pierced by the soldier through his heart bringing out blood and water, symbols of the Sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist.

Touching on the devotion of the Sacred Heart, Bishop Sim said Jesus had come to the world as one who comes wounded and in pain.

As for the thorns around the image of the heart, he said these depict our sins. “Each time we sin, we push the thorns deeper into the Heart of Jesus.”

He said that in the visions experienced by St Margaret Mary Alacoque, Jesus had emphasised on sins and the sin of ingratitude, which we never thought was a sin.

“Every sin is a sign of our disobedience, our rejection of God’s plan for us. Conversion of sinners and by staying more and more away from sin, the Heart of Jesus shall experience a lessening of the pain.”

He appealed to Catholics to be actively engaged in calling sinners back to the Lord thus removing the thorns from the Sacred Heart. He called on them to firstly be committed in an on-going way.

This could be done through prayer and study that are necessary for growth.

The Bishop of Brunei also reminded them of the call of Jesus to his followers to carry their personal cross daily.

He said the way to consecreation to the Sacred Heart is by committing ourselves, to let the Lord be the king of our life and to see and obey his will.

Bishop Sim, in his final talk, offered four “prayerful practices” that would help SHC parishioners commit themselves to the Sacred Heart: frequently receive the Holy Communion; attend Mass for nine consecutive First Fridays; attend Holy Hour on Thursday nights for the devotion of the Sacred Heart; and create the liturgical feast of the Sacred Heart.

He said the liturgical Feast of the Sacred Heart was established by Pope Pius IX in 1856 as obligatory for the whole Church, so today as Catholics we can observe it with special reverence.

He also spoke about the need for an exchange of heart with Christ, saying that Jesus yearns to give us his heart and by doing so, bringing us back to God, for, we all belong to him. – Joe Leong

Malaysian novices make first religious professions

malaysian novices make first professions

L-R: Srs Laura Anggie, Sr Laurin Kowal, Sr Aemy Soo, and Sr Mary Sualeh pose for remembrance after the ceremony at the novitiate chapel in Lipa on 24 June 2019.

LIPA, Philippines – Malaysian Novices Aemy Soo, 29, of Sabah and Laurin Kowal, 28, of  Perak made their first religious professions in the presence of Sr. Delia Abian, Provincial Superior of the Daughters of St Paul, during the Eucharistic celebration presided by Fr Rollin Flores, Provincial Superior of the Society of St Paul with several concelebrating priests from the Society of St Paul, the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer, and the Oblates of St Joseph on 24 June 2019, Solemnity of the Birth of John the Baptist at the novitiate chapel here.

Among those present to witness the event were the neo-professed’s family members, relatives, friends and fellow Daughters of St. Paul.  The Mass servers were seminarians from the Oblates of St Joseph Lipa.

This is the second time the congregation witnessed the joint first profession of novices from both East and West Malaysia, 19 years after that of Novices Jennifer Han (Sabah) and Elizabeth (Perak) in 2000.

Simple lunch was served after the Eucharistic celebration.

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