ST. BENEDICT PARISH

The Word

Let me take you to the reflection of the Gospel from the point of view of the contemporary time… (note: a “talent” mentioned in the gospel is not our contemporary understanding of the word – like singing or dancing. Rather, a weight of a metal with the corresponding monetary value.)
The Gospel says… A rich man will leave his home, but before leaving, he entrusted his wealth to his servants. To one he gave 5 talents, to another one he gave 2 talents and to another he gave 1 talent. Surely, he was thinking of profit when he comes back.
The one who received 5 talents went to business and profited 5 more. The one who received 2 talents did the same, went to business and profited 2 more. The other who has received 1 talent dug a hole on the ground and buried the rich man’s money.
The rich man, their master at last returned and asked for an accounting of what was entrusted to his servants. The first one presented the 5 he received and the 5 he profited. The master said, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’ The second servant presented the 2 he received and the 2 he profited. The master said, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’
Let us take a closer look on these two. The two servants have differed on the quantity of what they received, 5 talents and 2 talents. But the praises and the reward that the master gave were exactly the same for the two servants. For the Lord, and this should also be for us, the quantity doesn’t matter and should not matter (nothing to be envious of the other person who has more). The reward-word from the master is the same for the one who received 5 and for the one who received 2. The thing that would matter to the rich man, to the master, to the Lord, is, you were entrusted big or small and you used them well and you made a profit out of it.
Let us take a closer look at ourselves brothers and sisters! No matter how big or how little we have received, use it to serve God.
As to the servant who received 1 talent, he dug a hole on the ground and buried his master’s money. When his master returned and asked for an accounting of what was entrusted to him, he presented the talent he received. It was intact, not a part was lost BUT no profit. The master said, ‘You wicked and lazy servant… Take the talent from him… And throw this useless servant into the darkness outside.’
Now, a closer look on this one. The master was angry because the servant did not use the talent entrusted to him. He then ordered his other servants to take the 1 talent given to this lazy servant and then throw him outside. There will be no praises and no reward from the rich man, the master, the Lord because the person did not use what was entrusted to him. 
Let us take a closer look at ourselves brothers and sisters! Are we really using everything that was given to us?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     

Rev. Fr. Conrad Amon

The "Blessed Virgin Mary", our "Mama Mary"

A Letter From Our Parish Priest
Rev. Fr. Conrad Amon

Taken from May - June 2020 Newsletter Issue No. 5 Vol. 2

 

 

The way you address a person reflects the relation you have for that person. The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY… “Blessed Virgin” is a formal address the Church gave to MARY. In most cases, this may also be the initial dealing of a believer to the person of Mary. Then eventually, the address would be changed to Mother Mary. I would say, this is when relations between Mary and the person becomes personal. Going a bit further, specially for us Filipinos, we go as far as calling her, Mama Mary. Blessed Virgin may just convey a title, Mother is a positional relation, Mama is endearment and very personal. 


How have we come this far in our relation with Mary, Mother of our Lord, our Mama Mary? — a relation very dear and very personal!


We have not met Mama Mary personally, we have not seen her, she died about two thousand years ago. But we feel her. In the way we address her express endearment and a personal relation. Thanks to the Gospels and the Marian Catechesis — our hearts were prepared for her, we entered not only her world but her person. Thanks to growth of Marian devotions — our hearts have responded well to her, “el pueblo amante de Maria.” BUT MOST OF ALL THANKS TO MAMA MARY HERSELF — SHE ALWAYS WOULD MAKE HER MOTHERLY PRESENCE FELT IN THE CHURCH, THEN AND NOW


During the Biblical times, after the Annunciation from the Angel Gabriel, we heard of Mama Mary visiting Elizabeth. Her cousin was then filled with joy and the son in her womb leaping with the same joy as his mother’s. True indeed, a mother would always want joy for her family. We also remember what happened at the Wedding at Cana. The story went to saying that they ran out of wine. Mama Mary was there and the mother in her made her feel that something was not going well. Having known what the problem was, Mama Mary asked her Son, Jesus [for a miracle] to give them wine. She was there in moments of need. 
In the life of the Church, in different times, she would  make her motherly presence experienced. SHE MAKES US AWARE AND CONSCIOUS OF HER BEING “MAMA MARY” TO THE CHURCH, TO US.


In modern times, in the year 40AD, it was believed that while Mama Mary was living in Jerusalem, she appeared to the Apostle James the Greater while he was preaching in Spain. This appearance of Mama Mary was considered to be an instance of Mama Mary exhibiting bilocation. The story tells us that she uplifted the tired spirit of James to continue with the mission of evangelization. There was in 1858 another significant moment of Mama Mary in the Church. She appeared to a young 14 year old girl in Lourdes, France. She made herself known to the young girl and to the Church as Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception. Mama Mary asked the girl to pray with her for the “Conversion of Sinners”. Indeed a mother who would not like her children walk the wrong way. Another yet was Mama Mary’s apparition in Fatima, Portugal in 1917, to the three children. Several times she appeared to the children and once to around seventy thousand people gathered. They saw the Miracle of the dancing sun and so made her presence felt. But, the most significant of this apparition was the prayer with the children and the request for the Consecration of Russia to her Immaculate Heart (Immaculate Heart of Mary).


Since the Biblical times up to the Contemporary time, SHE ALWAYS WOULD MAKE HER MOTHERLY PRESENCE EXPERIENCED IN THE CHURCH. SHE MAKES US CONSCIOUS OF HER BEING “MAMA MARY” TO THE CHURCH, TO US.


My dear sisters and brothers, in times of joy and in moments of crises, look for MAMA MARY. She will be your refuge.