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The Best Homily

Today is Tuesday, July 30 - Feast Day of Saint Peter Chrysologus, Bishop, Confessor, and Doctor of the Church.

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Fr. Benedict started his homily by introducing St. Peter Chrysologus whose name literally means "golden tongue" (or "golden speech"). He is known as The Doctor of Homilies because he delivered short (about five minutes only; it was said he was afraid to bore his audience) but inspired talks. 176 of his homilies are extant up to now.

But Fr. Benedict made it clear: "You don't become a saint by just being a good preacher. You become a saint if you live what you preach."

"People look up to you, you can't help it. As leaders of your organization, and as workers here at your Global Mission Center, people don't just expect you to go the extra mile, but to go the extra smile."

"You are giving the best homily by the way you live your life." I remember one similar quote: "Be careful how you live, you may be the only Bible some people will ever read."

Our very lives are expressions of our faith. And as members of Singles for Christ, having the privilege to bear the name of Christ, we have also a great responsibility to proclaim the truth about who He is and what He does. We are ambassadors of Christ, and we market Him by the way we live.

Fr. Benedict continued, "In our life, there is what we call the spontaneity of hope and fear, of good and evil." True enough, we are always confronted with choices and we are not only supposed to choose, we need to discern. "In the most difficult moments of our life, when we are at our weakest, then we realize that everything is possible because of God's grace. When we have to deal with the hardest people, we go back to the Responsorial Psalm: The Lord is kind and merciful... and so am I! And ultimately, know that in the end, we will all be judged." 

Then, addressing the trainees and newbies, he ended, "But don't be afraid of the future (or the lack of it). You will certainly have it. Kung ano at sino ang meron ka ngayon, yan ang kinabukasan mo. I urge you to read the letters of St. Paul because he is a missionary just like you and me and we can really learn a lot about mission from him. Pero huwag kayong matakot. Walang dapat ikatakot dahil hindi tayo pababayaan ng Panginoon. Matatakot lang tayo kung hindi tayo naniniwalang may Diyos na labis na nagmamahal sa atin." (Read 1 John 4:18. "There is no fear in love. But perfect love casts out fear.")


Speaking of love, here is one homily of St. Peter Chrysologus that speaks about that four-letter word:

"Fall in love, stay in love, and it will decide everything." -Fr. Pedro Arrupe, SJ

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