- Last Sunday's Gospel focused on the necessity of prayer (Luke 18:1-8). The second of two parables in Chapter 18:9-15, teaches that the fundamental attitude of the Christian disciple must be the recognition of sinfulness and complete dependence on God's graciousness.
One of Luke's favorite themes, the reversal brought about by the coming of Jesus, is beautifully illustrated in today's Gospel. The story of the Pharisee and the tax collector is directed to a particular kind of people: those who were law-abiding in their own eyes but who looked down on everyone else. The Pharisee, a member of the group of the so-called righteous, prayed "with himself," and the whole prayer he gives is focused on himself and his good works. He is a legend unto himself, shining in his own eyes, especially as he compares himself to the tax collector, the one who belonged to the despised group in society.
On the other hand, the only thing, the tax collector knew was that it was only possible to admit his guilt when he came and brought it before God. That God would forgive him, he didn't dare to hope. And it was only in this way that he was able to experience Jesus' word to him, "You are good because I have accepted you."
The provocative story warns us of our own behavior in prayer, word and deed. This parable was a shock to its first hearers. If anyone in Judaism would not go home from the temple justified, it would be a tax collector.
- We welcome in the month of November with two great feasts of “All Saint – November 1” and “All Souls – November 2”. In both of these Feast Days, we celebrate the lives of the people whom had demonstrated their faithfulness to God in words and deeds through all the “in and out seasons” of their lives and also, those who are awaiting the Mercy of God and His gift of Redemption. These are the people of God whom we are related to or even known while living here on earth. Let’s celebrate and especially remember those who are in need of God’s mercy and our prayers throughout the month of November.
Friday, November 1 is the “Feast of All Saints”.
At St. Gabriel Parish, there will be one morning Mass at 11:00 AM and an evening Mass at 7:00 PM.
At Prince of Peace Parish – Belfair, there will be 5:00 PM Mass (English) and 7:00 PM Mass (Spanish).
- Counting down in ONE more week, The Annual Holiday Bazaar (All Day Friday, Nov. 1; All Day Saturday, Nov. 2 and after Masses on Sunday, Nov. 3). Please stop by the Community Room before and after Mass to visit and purchase something for a good cause (All proceeds are for Share and Care Ministry) to help the needy and the unfortunate of our faith community and the larger community of Port Orchard.
- We’re already a month into the Fall Season, what a beautiful sight of this colorful Season! With this changing color of the leaves, there is also a changing in our clock-time as well – Daylight saving is ended. Remember to change your clock back one-hour for next Sunday (November 3) when you come to Church; if you forget, the best scenario will happen to you - “an extra hour of prayer and meditation” at Church before everyone else is coming.
Fr. Phuong Hoang