Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Fr Patrick Etuk, MSP - Homily from Wednesday, February 13, 2019

"From within people, from their hearts, come evil thoughts, unchastity, theft, murder,  adultery, greed, malice, deceit, licentiousness, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, folly.  All these evils come from within and they defile.”  (Mark 7: 21 - 23)."

Ultimately we can't blame the devil, upbringing, or society for  the corruption in us. Our Lord tells us sin comes from our hearts. This is not bad news because it means it is within us. It is not beyond us.  We are not puppets but humans created with the power to make decisions. We can do something about the perverse situation of our hearts. Moreso, God is at work in us to make us ever willing and able. When impure thoughts rise in our hearts let's call on the name of Jesus, every knee bows at that name. As often as we invoke that name every stronghold of evil in our hearts will give way.

🙇‍♀A pure heart create for me O God, put a steadfast spirit within me.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Fr Patrick Etuk, MSP - Homily from Tuesday, February 12, 2019

"This people honor me with their lips but their heart is far from me". Mt.15:8

True worship is a matter of the heart, not mere religous observance, an outward show nor an out-pour of emotions.
 A heart free from falsehood, malice and dishonesty is always welcome and acceptable in God's presence. When we fall into sin God is ever willing to forgive us if we acknowledge our faults and are willing to make ammends.  Yet, he can't stand hypocrisy, a deceitful heart, a malicious intent to circumvent his laws and commands, let alone justify our actions when we are clearly wrong. He hates it when we lie in his name, using our religiosity to deceive people for our personal gain.

🙇‍♀A humble and contrite heart O God you do not spurn. All I bring to you this morning is a broken Spirit. Be merciful unto me a poor sinner. Amen.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Fr Patrick Etuk, MSP - Homily from Monday, February 11, 2019

"Whatever villages or towns or countryside he [Jesus] entered, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak; and as many as touched it were healed."  (Mark 6: 56).

No one who came to Jesus, left empty handed. Anyone who touched him was healed. We desperately need his touch today, we who are often afraid, anxious, broken, wounded, lonely, weak and sick. We don't have to search for him. He has come to us as he went to their towns, villages and farms. He is so within reach for everyone. All we need do is turn to him in faith and we will find solace in him. He will heal us and bind our wounds freeing us from all our ills.

🙇‍♀Lord Jesus, everyone who touched you was healed. Lord, I have assurance that my case will not be different. It is settled as I turn to you this morning. Amen.

Fr Patrick Etuk, MSP - Homily from 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time year C, Feb. 10, 2019

"But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain". 1cor. 15:10

1. Grace is favour, the free and undeserved help that God gives us to respond to his call to become children of God, adoptive sons, partakers of the divine nature and of eternal life." It is a spontaneous gift from God  "generous, free and totally unexpected and undeserved" that takes the form of divine favor, love, clemency, and a share in the divine life of God.

2. We could do nothing except by God's grace. All our effort will come to nothing, except by his grace. All our good will turn to ill except by his grace.

3. God"s grace is available to everyone no matter the condition of the person. No matter how sinful you are, you are a possible beneficiary of God's grace.  In fact the more miserable we are the greater his love and even his willingness to show us mercy. Paul is a great example. He persecuted Christians and hated them with a passion but God showered him mercy and transformed him even when he did not ask for it.

4. God's grace is not automatic, we must respond accordingly so that his grace will be effective and fruitful in our lives.
 We must tap into his grace. We must position ourselves to receive grace. How?

5. Let us  acknowledge our sins and unworthiness. When Isaiah recognised his faults and humbled himself, God sent his angel to purify him and he was instantly cleansed.

6. We must be available. God's grace Will be fruitful in us when we are available for his purposes, Isaiah says here I am send me. He didn't even know the details and what demands the Lord will make, he simply abandoned himself. Whenever we yield to God we experience the power of his grace. Lord, grant us the grace to yield completely to you. Amen.

7. We must be docile. Being docile is being willing to take instructions from the other, not living according to our own whims and caprices. Paul tells us that the gospel is able to save us if we live by it. This is what Peter did he acted on the instruction of Christ. Jesus told him, pay out the net into the deep for a catch. He obeyed in spite of the fact that he did not see reasons to do so. Afterall, he had laboured all night and caught nothing. But when he obeyed,  he neted such a huge catch that he needed help to bring to shore. Breakthrough, open doors await you as you are docile to Jesus, but when we live in rebellion we keep moving in circles and not making any progress. Obedience will bring immeasurable blessings to your life. This is grace. By his grace you can live in obedience. Amen.

8. God wants us to be instruments of his grace. Jesus tells Peter, I will make you fishers of men.
The greatest service we can ever render in this world is to make ourselves available to bring back our fallen brethren to the fold. We must have a burden for souls and be co-redeemers with Christ.  This task today is more urgent than ever. We must be like Isaiah saying here I am send me. And if this disposition is lacking in us let us fervently ask for it and God Will grant it to us. Grace is not for the capable but for the available. There are people lost out there. Ask God to use you to bring them back no matter how  deep in sin there are and far from his grace. The grace of God will not be fruitless in you. Amen.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Fr. Patrick's Homily - Nov. 11, 2018

"Amen, I say to you, this poor widow put in more
than all the other contributors to the treasury.
For they have all contributed from their surplus wealth,
but she, from her poverty, has contributed all she had,
her whole livelihood." Mk. 12:38-44.

1. God does not see the way we humans see, what we sometimes value and consider dignifying is repugnant to him. We humans are carried away often by large sums that people donate but God sees the humility, the sacrifices, the sincerity, the faith,  the tears of the donor.  He knows the story behind every gift. 
 It is the spirit behind the giving that moves the heart of God not necessarily the amount one gives.  

2. The rich must  give more, not  from their surplus but from their substance, what they have to live on. The golden rule of giving is give until it hurts . Yes. For those who are sowing in tears will surely sing when they reap. 

3. There was no one who was so poor that he had nothing to offer. There is no excuse for not giving. We can always give our time, talents and energy to work for the kingdom. If the poor widow who was in dire need of charity could give her last penny, no one is exempt from giving.  

4.  Giving will not impoverish anyone, it rather makes room for us to receive abundantly from God's  store house that never runs dry. Sacrificial giving positions you for uncommon providence, For a full measure pressed down shaken together and rolling over will be poured on the  laps of the one who gives generously and freely (The widow of Zarephath). The generous of heart will never lack.

🙏🙏🙏Give me again the joy of your help. With a Spirit of fervor sustain me O God. Amen.