Mother’s Day, love one another

Published May 9, 2021, 12:12 AM

by Fr. Bel R. San Luis, SVD



Today is Mother’s Day. This recalls the story of a rescue operation in the sea. Ten men and one woman were clinging to a rope, hanging from a helicopter. They were overloaded. One person had to let go or they would all fall down and drown.

Looking at each other, no one wanted to volunteer. After a couple of minutes, the woman said, “Mothers are used to making sacrifices for their husbands and children. Since nobody wants to go, I’ll give my life for all of you.” The men were so moved by her speech that they clapped their hands… and all fell down!

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The amusing story illustrates the heroic love of a mother willing to give up her life; however, she was the one saved.

Today, Mother’s Day, we thank and pray for mothers, living or dead, for all their love, caring and sacrifices. There’s a Jewish saying which goes, “God cannot be everywhere so He created mothers.”

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Jesus teaches in today’s gospel, “As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you.”

A distinctive quality of love is the ability to give one’s self for the good of the other. The greatest love of all is to “lay down one’s life for another.” This, however, is rare and difficult to do. It  belongs only to martyrs and heroes. Today, our modern-day heroes are the medical frontliners — doctors, nurses, med techs, ambulance drivers — soldiers, police, and barangay workers.

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Other forms of love can be expressed in day-to-day situations like praying for the sick,a word of encouragement to those going through health or economic crisis, a sincere praise or compliment,  condoling with a bereaved family — through phone or online. For a needy bereaved family, a financial help might be more practical than giving expensive flower bouquets.

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The Lord also said, “If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love.” In short, obeying God’s commands is loving Him.”

We have the 10 commandments but do we obey them? Or, do we obey only what we want to? A priest was preaching about the 10 commandments. In booming voice, he said: “Honor your father and mother.” A fired up politician in the front row, exclaimed, “Amen Fr. Amen.” Then, the priest fulminated successively and said, “Thou shall not kill…” Thou shall not commit adultery.”

Finally, the preacher paused and bellowed, “Thou shall not steal”! This time the politician parishioner retorted in low voice: “Oops, oops, Father, hindi ka na nangangaral. Nakikialam kana sa buhay ko! (Oops, oops, Father, “you’re no longer preaching. You are now meddling with my life.”) Poor politico, he was involved in a pork barrel scam!

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God’s command, “Thou shalt not steal,” is imposed not only to restrict our greed or a mass ill-gotten wealth but also the unabated violation of the commandment leads to the country’s economic dislocation and eventual perdition. Recall the truism from the Greek philosopher Plato: “Poverty (in a country) is not the decrease of wealth but the increase of greed.”

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God’s command against adultery is not to restrict the husband to enjoy the company of other women or worse, fall into infidelity but such can cause deep emotional wounds, bitter quarrels that can lead to a broken family.

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THE LIGHTER SIDE. A young boy went to the mother who was busy cooking in the kitchen. He asked, “Mama, what are the 10 Commandments?” The mother replied, “Those are the commands from God for us to follow.” The boy thought for a while then said, “Mama, you’re greater than God then.” Taken aback, the mother replied, “Why did you say that?”

“Because God has only 10 commandments while you have so many commands for me,” the boy smiled.

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After a wedding in church, the priest celebrant said to the couple, “Remember, the Lord said ‘LOVE ONE ANOTHER’, not ‘LOVE ANOTHER ONE.’”

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APPEAL. There are so many people suffering from the coronavirus pandemic. I am helping some to buy expensive medicines but my funds are lacking. May I appeal to your kindness to please help these poor patients? Any amount will be highly appreciated.

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The Lord said, “Whatever you did to the least of My brethren, you did it for Me” (Matthew 25:40).

For inquiry, e-mail me at: [email protected]. God bless!