(On the Ascension Sunday, World Communications Day, Brgy Election and Mothers Day)
We begin by gratefully recognizing all our mothers. We honor them as we offer the mass for our Nanay, Mama, Inay, Lola.
Mothers are so dear to our hearts. In fact, we do not only use word “mother” to our biological mother. We often associate mother with important realities close to our hearts. So we include “mother” in referring to our country (inang-bayan), to our Catholic church (inang-simbahan) or even to our native language (inang wika). Indeed, we find an affective connection of the love of a mother whenever we speak of our church, of our country and of our power to communicate.
Love for the Church
On the day of His ascension, Jesus entrusted His disciples the mission of forming communities of faith . Go and proclaim to the whole world, baptize them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Through the apostles, the church was born. Jesus does not leave his flock orphan but continues to send his disciples to take care of them. Like a mother who gives birth to her child, she always yearns to be with her child. She does not abandon her beloved child.
Our mother church likewise cares for her flock. Before ascending to heaven, Jesus sent his disciples take care of His flock. Up until the present, the church through her ministers continues to proclaim the gospel so that the everyone will benefit from His message of love.
How do we extend our love to our mother church? Do we participate in the common mission of proclaiming the good news to others? Or have we caused the pain of the spouse of Christ, the church, because we have been passive to our mission?
Love for the nation.
Our mother land is again in pain to see the constitution being mocked by our leaders, no less than by the magistrates of the Supreme court itself. Yes we blame always the government leaders for our misery. But who were the ones who placed them there? Our votes! We have been duped by the evils of the society. We have been guiding everyone to choose wisely our leaders. But unfortunately, many are already swept away by the flood of money, power and trapo politics.
Tomorrow, we will once again vote for our barangay leaders. Though the barangay is the smallest unit of the society, yet it is where we immediately feel our being a citizen. It is where our children directly receive the services of the government. If we are going to be fooled by the saying “barangay officials lang naman yan” we will lose sight of the greater threats of evil that start in the very place closest to our loved ones. Many times, we have been convinced by the empty promises of our politicians, let us learn from our mistakes of the past. Let us vote wisely and responsibly this time.
The Power to Communicate
This Sunday, we celebrate the World Communications Day. If there is one beautiful gift that we receive from God, that is the power to communicate. But communication has been so abused and misused in the past and even until these days.
In today’s fast-changing world of communications and digital systems, we are witnessing the spread of what has come to be known as “fake news” (WCD Message of Pope Francis) How can we be freed from this phemomenon? Pope Francis continues: “The most radical antidote to the virus of falsehood is purification by the truth. In Christianity, truth is not just a conceptual reality that regards how we judge things, defining them as true or false. The truth is not just bringing to light things that are concealed, "revealing reality” The best antidotes to falsehoods are not strategies, but people: people who are not greedy but ready to listen, people who make the effort to engage in sincere dialogue so that the truth can emerge; people who are attracted by goodness and take responsibility for how they use language.
Let us once again value the gift of communication of truth and love as every mother does. Our society is tired of falsehood and empty promises.
Everything started with the mission of the disciples to spread the good news to all the land. In spreading the good news, we bring about peace. If only we are true to this mission of communicating the love of the Father, only then can we have a better mother church and mother land.
As Jesus ascends to heaven, he left with us a mission to communicate peace and truth so that the Kingdom of God will reign on earth.
Go out to the whole world and proclaim the Good News.
- Fr. Louie Occiano