It is 14th February 2019. We celebrate the memorial of St Cyril, Monk and St Methodius, Bishop, Patrons of Europe. The readings are from Genesis 2:18-25; and the Gospel from Mark 7:24-30. May the celebrations of Valentine’s day bring us closer to each other in love, respect and faithfulness. Let us vow to uphold love at all cost over lust mongering world. The hunger for bodily cravings and pleasures must not abuse and abort the sanctity and sacredness of love. We need to establish the connections of love and strengthen the bonds of affection and mutual respect without any dint of domination between man and woman. The dignity of man and woman needs to be seen in real life not just in post cards and official documents. Love is not just a spark but it is the fire that cannot be satisfied by passion alone. Love searches for love in us and outside and it will never compromise with anything in the world until it encounters the ever-embracing love. The first reading teaches us strongly that God created a suitable partner for man out of his own flesh. “This at last is bone from my bones, and flesh from my flesh.” (Gen.2:23). There is no way God intended any subordination of woman to man by creating her at last. Man’s heart can be complemented with woman not with the same gender and there is no suitable and equal partner like woman to man. No created being can take the place of a human being in reciprocity of affection and love like that of a human being. The Catechism teaches us in No. 369 “Man and woman have been created, which is to say, willed by God: on the one hand, in perfect equality as human persons; on the other, in their respective beings as man and woman. “Being man” or “being woman” is a reality which is good and willed by God: man and woman possess an inalienable dignity which comes to them immediately from God their Creator. Man and woman are both with one and the same dignity “in the image of God”. In their “being-man” and “being-woman”, they reflect the Creator’s wisdom and goodness. The responsorial Psalm acclaims, “O blessed are those who fear the Lord.” (Ps.127:1). The Gospel teaches us that there is no one is exempted from the salvation God offers to humanity. God has no reason to alienate us on any account when we have humility and persistence with confidence. Jesus healed the daughter of Syrophoenician woman only on the basis of her word and confidence to ask that little we all deserve from God. As God treats everyone equal, so we need to love one another with respect and dignity. Our hearts are created by God to love and only to love, why then are we harbouring and fostering lust and selfishness with arrogance and unforgiving attitude. May we allow love to live in human hearts and to shun all that suffocates the environment of love.

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