9th Week, Ordinary Time, Monday, Jun 1st

2 Peter 1:2-7 / Mark 12:1-12
Peter sends greetings: May you be filled with peace.

The bishops of the United States wrote a Pastoral Letter on War and Peace in the early 1980's. In it they pointed out that the biblical idea of peace is not so much the absence of war as it is the presence of a right relationship with God. We sometimes forget that peace begins in the soul of each one of us.
An old Chinese proverb explains how:
“If there is right in the soul, there will be beauty in the person. If there is beauty in the person, there will be harmony in the home. If there is harmony in the home, there will be order in the nation. If there is order in the nation, there will be peace in the world.”
What is our present relationship with God? “Lord, make us instruments of your peace.” St. Francis of Assisi
We may assume that maturity comes with age, and that as we grow older, we will also grow wiser. That may not be the case always, but still we cannot take growth and maturity for granted. Every now and then, we may need to do a reality check on ourselves so that we can see ourselves clearer and to see what is it that really matters to us. The 1st reading states a direction for our life in Christ when it says that may we have more and more grace and peace as we come to know our Lord more and more. And it also charts out a spiritual check on ourselves to let us see if we are indeed growing in grace and peace.

Beginning from faith, and then going on to goodness, understanding, self-control, patience, true devotion, kindness and then finally love. So with faith, there must be a growth and maturity that bears fruit in love and the 1st reading urges us that to attain this, we have to do our utmost best. To slack in our spiritual development and to be complacent is to end up like the evil tenants in the parable of the vineyard.
We must not take love for granted nor must we ever resort to violence to get the things we desire. Let us have a sincere and honest reflection before the Lord and ask for the grace to see ourselves truthfully so that we will be at peace with God, with others and with ourselves.

Monday of 9th Week of Ordinary Time 


Probably written by someone belonging to the group of Peter’s disciples in the 2nd century, the author of 2 Peter warns against false teachers and against fear of the coming of Christ in the Parousia. The parable of the wicked farmers or tenants who rent and cultivate the vineyard describes first of all in moving terms how God loves his chosen people (Israel, but also us) as a winegrower does his vineyard. It is a theme dear to the Scriptures. He plants and tends it with care. God’s love comes first. Then, he leaves his work to be continued and developed by people, entrusts it to them and wants to see it bear fruit. He sends even his beloved Son. Israel did not yield the expected produce. Do we? 

Opening Prayer 
God, you love us. You ask of us today: “My people, answer me: What more could I have done for you?” Teach and help us to respond with our whole being to your daily forgiveness and patience, to the riches of life brought us by Jesus, to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, that we may be a people that bears lasting fruits. May we bring to all a justice animated by love; may we learn to share as you do with us. Show us your mercy through Jesus Christ, our Lord.

The Letter of Peter reminds us that divine power has made the life of authentic virtue a true possibility. With faith at its base, many virtues emerge in our lives. Knowledge, self-control, perseverance, concern for others are all effective because of God’s power, with love as the crowning virtue. The great tragedy of the vineyard parable is not only the rejection of Christ but the rejection of all that his gift of the Spirit life makes possible. The human being is intended to be the glory of God, fully alive. That means living the qualities that love of God will infuse in us. That is the meaning of the great Easter gift. To turn our backs on Christ is to walk away from all those qualities that make of life such a precious gift. As the reading from Peter today states, God has bestowed on us everything necessary for a life of genuine piety. In turning our backs on the Son of the vineyard’s Owner, we suffer an immense loss. Let us pray that we persevere in faith with courage and love. 

Points to Ponder 
Grace in a variety of virtues
Appreciating the goodness of God
The primacy of love 

– For us the Church, that it may always remain young and faithful and inspire its members and even the world with a sense of hope and deep love, we pray:
– For the whole Christian people, that we may show patience and compassion to people who go astray, to those who disappoint us, and accept them as the Lord accepts us, we pray: – And for all in our Christian community here, that we may be grateful that the Lord has made us his vineyard and the tenants from whom he expects much, we pray: 

Prayer over the Gifts 
Faithful God, we bring these gifts before you to celebrate how you have made with us, your chosen people, a new and everlasting covenant through the death and rising of your Son. Do not allow us to become proud of being the people you love, but help us to be worthy of your trust and to give you a response of deep faith expressed in service. Grant us this through Christ, our Lord. 

Prayer after Communion 
Lord, mighty God, in this Eucharist, your Son has been your encouraging word and your food of strength for building up your kingdom among your people. Deepen our trust that Christ will stay with us and that he is the foundation on which we build. Make us inventive and creative in sharing with all who are willing to listen the Good News we have received and to respond to your faithful love. We ask this in the name of Jesus, the Lord. 

We are God’s vineyard, God’s cherished people. We are answerable to God and sent by him to make his Good News known by our words and deeds, with the blessing of Almighty God, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.