It is 4th December 2019. We celebrate the memorial of St. John Damascene, priest and doctor of the Church. The readings are from Isaiah 25:6-10; and the Gospel from Matthew 15:29-37. Most of us go through so many challenges such as pain, sicknesses, division, injustices, betrayals, addictions, spousal unfaithfulness, abandonment from children and the significant ones and financial difficulties in our life on a daily basis. But God multiplies our blessings every moment of our life. During the first week of the Advent, God assures God’s protection and care by removing all shame and guilt from us and multiplies all blessings to each one of us through Jesus. We are injected hope during the first week. Jesus is our hope of all times. Jesus, the new Moses makes us cross the ocean of sin and shame. The first reading invites us to a banquet of love and affection set by God on the mountain of peace and grace. God wants to wipe all our tears and cover us with peace. “God will destroy… the shroud that is cast over all peoples, the sheet that is spread over all nations; he will swallow up death forever. God will wipe away the tears from all faces, and the disgrace of his people he will take away from all the earth.” (Is.27:7,8). God assures the first messianic gift as the banquet that satisfies bodily and spiritual hunger. (Mt.22:1-4; Lk. 14:6-24). God cares for us so tenderly and lovingly. The responsorial Psalm praises, “In the Lord’s own house shall I dwell for ever and ever.” (Ps.22:6). The Gospel presents Jesus to be our hope and healer. Jesus wipes the tears of the lame, the crippled, the blind, the dumb and many others. The bread that Jesus gives us provides us immortality. “Whoever eats this bread will never die.” (Jn.6:51). Whatever is our hunger and sickness, Jesus can heal us and satisfy our needs. Jesus is the fulfilment of the prophecy of Isaiah, the Hope of broken and suffering humanity. We need to respond to the cry of the poor and the needy. Let not our selfishness blind the needs of the other. May God bless us to offer hope to those who have lost hope in life. May you have a good day.

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