⏰Thursday of the Fifth Week in Ordinary Time 1 (14 February 2019 – Memorial of Ss Cyril & Methodius)

📖Gen 2:18-25; Ps 128:1-2, 3, 4-5 (R.v.1a); Mark 7:24-30


Today is the popular day known as the Valentine Day. The memorial of St. Valentine was placed today to abolish the ancient pagan practice where boys used to draw the names of girls in honour of their goddess, Februata Juno, on February 15. Unfortunately, Many are going to celebrate evil today in the name of celebrating love. Are we not going back to the same pagan worship in the name of a celebration of love today?

What it means to celebrate love is to reach out to those who are in need and help them. But the world has turned it into a day for free adultery and fornication. We must change that story line and shame the devil. Instead of celebrating impunity today, look for a face in need and offer a helping hand.

Let us consider this: a modern consideration of Gen 2:18-25 might see it as strictly referring to the institution of marriage. But taking it back to the time like 10th Century B.C. and placing it in the context that the Jew of that time would understand might not yield the same result. And I think that that kind of venture is important for us to undertake.

At that time, a woman’s position in the family is that of support for her husband. In fact, we can get that picture from the solution God offered to the problem he raised, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I WILL GIVE HIM A HELPER FIT FOR HIM” (Gen 2:18). A helper is one who renders support or strength to another to accomplish a mission. So even in the context of marriage, the wife would be one in whom the husband finds support.

By the way, the accounts do not picture man in terms of gender but as nature. Hence, our attention must be more on our relationship as human beings. We are meant to be helpers to one another.

Ss. Cyril and Methodius, whose Memorial the Church, in fact, celebrates today, heard the call by Jesus, “Follow me!” (Mark 1:17) and followed the footsteps of Jesus by feeding people, especially the Slavs with the Word of God and helping them to convert to Christ.

Just before we fail into temptation and blame the devil later, we pray that God may make us real instruments of love, helping out in alleviating the pains of those in need and letting all we meet today see the face of Christ in us. Amen.

Happy Valentine’s Day to you dear. Peace be with you.

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