Friday, 25 December 2020 18:26

Homily | Bishop Broderick Pabillo - Christmas Eve Mass


Homily delivered by Most Rev. Broderick S. Pabillo, Apostolic Administrator of Manila during the Christmas Eve Mass at the Manila Cathedral on December 24, 2020, at 8 pm.

 Most Rev. Broderick S. Pabillo, Apostolic Administrator of Manila | Photo by Maricar Santos/RCAM-AOC


Good evening to you all and Merry Christmas! This is the day that we have been preparing for in the four weeks of Advent in the nine days of our Simbang Gabi.

The people who walk in darkness have seen a great light. Those who dwell in the land of loom, a light was shwon. This was proclaim to us by the prophet Isaiah.

Ito na po ang pasko. Dumating na ang liwanag na walang iba kundi ang Diyos na sumasaatin. Natalo na ang dilim. Hindi naman talaga absent ang Diyos sa ating mga tao. Our God is always a revealing God. He communicates since the very beginning of time. He makes Himself known through many ways especially through the things that He has made. We can know God through creation. And more, palagi naman siya nagpapadala ng mga tao upang ipaalam ang Kanyang kalooban sa atin.  He has always been in touch with us. Pinadala niya si Abraham, si Moises, si David, at mga pantas, ang mga propeta.

Ang kakaiba ngayon, pinadala niya ang Kanyang anak mismo. Ito ay si Hesus. The visible image of the invisible God dahil ang Diyos ay nagkatawang tao, naging bahagi na siya ng ating kasaysayan. Nakipag kapwa na ang Diyos sa atin. What a wonderful grace. We have seen this, this evening, there in front of us, the word which is in the gospel is made flesh in the word that has been made man.

Why did God become man? We may call this the divine madness. He empty Himself of His divinity in order to become one of us. Sino ba tayong mga tao na ang Diyos ay hindi lang dumating sa atin kundi nakibahagi rin sa ating pagkatao. Hindi lang siya bumisita sa atin, he has come to stay and live among us. The only reason of this divine madness is His divine love. He loves us so much that He joins Himself to us. He not only loves us which He has been doing from eternity. He has made His love concrete so that we can see Him, hear Him, touch Him. By these, He wants that we feel and know His love for us. And He continues this process of staying with us up to our days so He extends His stay through the sacraments especially on the Holy Eucharist. The divine presence is there not only symbolically but physically in the form of bread and wine. What a love! What a love that is always present. So, it is but appropriate that we celebrate Christmas. The word made flesh in the Eucharist. The word who stays with us, as bread, as food.

Isa sa mga gawain natin sa pasko ay ang exchange gift. Ang pagpapalitan ng mga regalo. Madalas may mga sama ng loob sa exchange gift. Mas mahalaga, mas mahal, mas maganda ang regalong binigay ko, kesa regaling nakuha ko. Kaya may sama ng loob.

Ang original idea of exchange gift ay ang exchange gift natin sa Diyos. Binigay natin anga ting pagktao sa Kanya upang maibigay niya sa atin ang Kanyang pagka-Diyos. Nakibagahi siya sa pagkatao natin para tayo ay makibahagi sa Kanyang pagka-Diyos. At hindi sumasama ang loob niya na talagang hindi naman pantay ang exchange na ito dahil mahal Niya tayo. He wants to share His joy and love so He shares His joy and His love so He shares His life with us. What a wonderful exchange.

Ang nakakalungkot lang, hindi natin siya tinanggap. He came to His own people and His own did not receive Him. All of us and all of creation were made because of Him and for Him and we His creatures do not receive Him. Ganun din dumating Siya sa Kanyang bayan sa Bethlehem at walang lugar sa Kanya sa mga bahay doon. Sa sabsaban pa siya pinanganak. Hanggang ngayon nangyayari ito.

Maraming mga tao nagsasaya sa pasko pero wala si Hesus sa kanilang kasiyahan. Ang masama pa nagkakasala sa Christams celebrations – nalalasing, nag-aaway. Nagbabatian ng Merry Christmas pero wala naman sa mga tao ang Kanyang alalaala na si Hesus ang dahilan ng Christmas. At binubura pa nga Siya sa Christmas kaya sa halip na mag-greet ng Merry Christmas, ang iba sinasabi na lang, seasons greetings. May marami pa na ang larawan ni Santa Claus ay mas marami kaysa larawan ni baby Jesus sa ating mga malls. Mas nag-aabang pa kay Santa Claus at sa kanyang mga regalo na dala kuno niya kaysa nag-aabang kay Hesus at ang kaligyahan at buhay na binibigay niya sa atin.

We exchange the reality of God coming among us to a myth of a Santa Claus. We are sad that children no longer believe in Santa Claus but we are not bothered that they do not believe in Jesus, who is more real than anything in the world. Let us not allow people to rob us from Jesus in Christmas. He is the reason for our joy. Yes, as the prophet said, “A child is born to us. A son is given to us. Upon His shoulder, dominion rests.”

To believe in Jesus is to believe in salvation because this is the meaning of His name, Jesus – God who saves. And this is the mission of this child – to bring God’s salvation to us.

Kalian kailangan pa natin ang kailgtasan? Siguro naman napakasama at napakabigat ng buhay natin ngayon. Marami ang walang trabaho. Marami ang nagkakasakit at namamatay pa. Marami ay natatakot at nangangamba sa kalagayan nila ngayon at sa kinabukasan. Nandiyan ang patuloy na hindi pagpapahalaga sa buhay tulad ng karumal dumal na pagpatay ng mag-ina sa Tarlac, ng mga abogado sa Palawan at sa Cebu, ng doctor at ng human rights advocate sa Negros. Ang solusyon ng magagaling nating mga mambabatas ay matigil ang pagpatay sa pamamagitan ng pagpatay, pagbabalik ng death penalty. How foolish! We will impose death in order to stop the killings. Is this not foolish?

Talagang kailangan natin ang kaligtasan. O, Diyos, hindi na namin kaya ito. Dumating ka na Hesus. Dumating ka na at iligtas kami. Hindi po ang vaccine ang magliligtas sa amin. Sa halip na makatulong ang vaccine, nagdadala pa ito ng pag-aaway ng mga tao at pagsasamantala ng mga kapangyarihan at ng may pera. Naging controversy pa ang vaccine. Hindi ang mga politiko ang magliligtas sa atin. Ang dami na nilang mga pangako na hindi natutupad. Wala na silang magawa kundi mangako, manisi at magbanta. Come, Lord Jesus come, and save us.

Kaya patuloy po ang daing natin ng Adbiyento kahit na pasko na kasi ang pasko ay anino nlang. It’s only a shadow of the real coming of Jesus to us, which is His coming in fullness at the end of time. Yes, nandito na nga ang pasko, ngunit alam naman natin magiging masaya tayo ng isang araw pero babalik ulit ang riyalidad, hindi pa tapos ang kaligtasan na sinimulan ng bata na isinilang.

We long for what the prophet Isaiah said, “Not by appearance shall He judge nor by hearsay shall He decide. But He shall judge the poor with justice and decide fairly for the lands afflicted. He shall strike the ruthless with…and with the breath of His lips. He shall slay the wicked.” Iyan po yung inaasahan natin. Nagsabi ang Diyos. Gagawin niya ito sapagkat tapat siya. Kaya halina, Hesus, halina, dumating ka na.”

There was a young woman by the name of Etty Ellison. She was a Dutch Jew who was killed in the death camp of…at the age of 29, in 1943. In her diary which made her famous, we find this entry and I quote, “I know that a new and kinder day will come. I would so much like to live on if only to express all the love that I carry within me and there is only one way of repairing the new age – by living it even now in our hearts,” end of quote.

Ito po ang mas malalim na hamon ng pasko – namnamin natin at isulong ang kaligtasan na pinangako ng pasko ngayon at araw araw. Hindi tapos ang pasko sapagkat dumating na ang December 25. Si Hesus na dumating ay manliligtas. Isabuhay natin ngayon ang kaligtasan na dala niya at isulong natin ito. Ibig sabihin isulong natin ang katarungan. Isulong natin ang kapayapaan. Isulong natin ang katotohanan. Isulong natin ang pag-ibig hanggang ito ay magkaroon ng kaganapan sa buhay na binibigay niya sa atin.

God has taken our life and live it fully. Our human life. Let us take the divine life and also live it fully. Yan po ang hamon sa atin ng pasko. (Archdiocese of Manila – Office of Communications/RCAM-AOC) 

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