Sunday, September 29, 2013

Sunday Reflections: If You Don't Believe in Moses and the Prophets then You Won't Believe in Jesus

Lazarus and the Rich Man by Gustave Dore
Lazarus and the Rich Man by Gustave Dore.
Today's Gospel reading is about two kinds of people. One is an unnamed rich man. The other is the poor man named Lazarus who just filled himself with the scraps coming from the table of the rich man. Lazarus' condition is so bad that dogs come to lick the sores that cover his whole body. The two eventually died and Lazarus was taken to the “bosom of Abraham” and the other was taken to eternal torment.

Of the many things that can be gleaned from this parable, what caught my attention is these words of our Lord: “If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded if someone should rise from the dead.”

The parable refers to Lazarus but it can also interpreted to refer to Jesus Christ, he who actually rose from the dead.

Our Church teaches that the Old Testament, which includes the law established by Moses and the writings of the Prophets, “is an indispensable part of Sacred Scripture” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 121). That we cannot do away with the “old scripture” because it is Divinely inspired.

In today's Gospel, it can be said that those who don't believe in the teachings found in the Old Testament will find it uneasy to believe in the teachings of the Resurrected One. “If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded if someone should rise from the dead.”

Many people, nowadays, want to do away with the teachings found in the Old Testament. These people, in turn, separates Jesus Christ (who they incorrectly label as “very” forgiving, “very” tolerant, peace loving God) from the God in the Old Testament (who they erroneously believe always chastises and punishes people).

Today's Gospel reminds us that Jesus Christ said that he came not to destroy the Law or the Prophets but to fulfill it (Matthew 5:17). Let us then be reminded not to diminish the Old Testament nor throw it away. The Law and Prophets are indispensable parts of the Christ's teachings. For what God has taught in the age of the Patriarchs, or of Moses, or the Prophets is still true until today and for eternity.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Aquino and Cabinet Should Quit - Tatad

In connection to the issue of the Pork Barrel Scam that is still raging in our country, let me post the press release of former Senator Francisco Tatad regarding the dare of presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda.


Francisco Tatad and Edwin Lacierda on the Pork Barrel Scam
Tatad VS Lacierda

I am extremely flattered by the special attention Malacanang continues to give me for exposing the reported luncheon meeting between President Aquino and Janet Lim Napoles on August 28, hours before she “surrendered” to the President. The presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda has promised to quit if I am able to name my sources and prove what they have revealed. I don’t believe he is offering enough: he should say Aquino himself would quit if Malacanang is unable to disprove my sources.

No threat, coercion, intimidation, cajoling or provocation will tempt me to betray my sources. If my sources decide to come out on their own and tell Mr. Lacierda what they have shared with me in the highest confidence, I will not stand in their way. But I will not ask them to make martyrs of themselves.

The tragedy here is that Mr. Lacierda has failed to deny the story with any demonstrable competence. He never denied that he accompanied Napoles to Malacanang at 10:30 am of August 28, and he never denied that she had lunch with Aquino and other Cabinet members inside the Music Room before he escorted her out at 4:30 pm, and back again at 9:27 pm when she formally “surrendered” to the President.

He tried to show that Aquino was not in Malacanang at 10 am, and at 1:30 pm. Respectively, which is beside the point. This was never in issue, and it does not contradict the story from my sources. Lacierda could have shown a film recording of the Music Room without anybody there from 10:30 am to 4:30 pm, but that could not be done, and he did not do it. Instead he chose to call me names while my articles online have since ended being linked to a pornographic website.

Lacierda fails to grasp the fact that the issue has grown far beyond the unexplained and inexplicable reported secret lunch. That is now but one small detail of a much bigger picture that has since emerged.

Given Aquino’s state-guest treatment of Napoles when she “surrendered” and his acting as her chief security officer when she was transferred to Camp Crame, and the recent revelations of her having acted as conduit for the massive transfer of “pork barrel” funds to induce members of Congress to impeach and remove then Chief Justice Renato Corona, and to railroad the widely-opposed anti-Catholic Reproductive Health bill in 2012—which has been partly confirmed by Sen. Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.--- the real issue now is what is the actual relationship between Napoles and Aquino and some members of his Cabinet, Lacierda himself included?

Malacanang’s inability to disprove the web of evidence showing a deep and hitherto hidden relationship between Aquino and Napoles calls for something much bigger than the resignation of Malacanang’s mouthpiece. It calls for the resignation of the President and his entire Cabinet, to say the least.


Image sources:

Francisco Tatad's picture came from his blog, First Things First. Edwin Lacierda's picture came from Philippine Daily Inquirer's website.