Tuesday, February 13, 2018


v  We begin Lent, a time of grace in which we prepare ourselves to celebrate the Paschal Mystery of Jesus. 

v  Although we do every year almost the same, this is not so. We change over time, God is always new, thus Lent is always a new time of grace, a time of encounter with the Lord, who invites us to follow him more closely during this season and to participate in his saving cross.    

v  This Sunday’s readings remind us of the covenant made between God and Noah in the name of humankind. Peter reminds us about our baptism and the Gospel presents Jesus who goes to the desert, where he will be tempted. At the end of his “retreat” he will proclaim to us that the time is fulfilled, that the Kingdom of God is at hand.   

FIRST READING  – Gn 9:8-15

Ø  The blessing which we read in the first reading today, comes after the story of the flood.   

Ø  The biblical author of these texts uses a mythical account of the countries found in the Mesopotamian region, and it transforms it into a theological reflection on the consequences of the bad use of freedom on the part of the human being, this leads him to drown, to his or her own destruction and, also to the destruction of the whole creation. 

Ø  It is a waste of time to ask whether the flood happened, because the author has used a myth to explain a truth of faith.  The author is not interested in the truth about the flood, because he is interested in the message he wants to convey.     

Ø  The author uses a composition full of color, images which become engraved in our memory, but these images have to lead us to the message which the author wants to tell us. 

Ø  God makes a universal covenant with Noah, who represents the whole human race, and also the entire creation, is thus a universal covenant, which goes beyond the chosen people, it is for all the peoples of the earth, and for the rest of creation. The emphasis is on the universality of the covenant. 

Ø  As in the beginning,  God blesses now his creating work, and in a very especial way the human beings “… and God saw that it was good…” “and saw that it was good…” … and saw that it was good…” God gives a new opportunity to man, God does not go wearied to start anew.  

Ø  The author describes the sign of the covenant with a natural phenomenon, a sign of great beauty, “when I see the bow on the clouds I will remember this covenant…”   

Ø  God is portrayed like a human person. God needs to see to remember, this is how the human being remembers… 

Ø  When two nations or tribes were fighting, it was customary that the one who did not want to fight anymore would hang his bow at the entrance of his tent as a sign of peace.   

Ø  God, who has his tent in heaven, hangs his bow on the clouds, at the entrance of his abode,   as a sign of peace.      

Ø  People believed that God was he who sent the rain, God who punished the human beings either with drought or with floods; these are the weapons of God. 

Ø  The story of the flood says that God is tired of the evil of the human being, of his sin and uses one of  his weapons  “the flood” to destroy him. 

Ø  Now he makes peace and, the sign of that peace is that wonderful bow on the clouds. When I will send clouds over the earth, my arc will appear on the clouds, and I will remember my covenant with you, and with every human being.   

Ø  We know that the colors of the rainbow are produced by the light passing through the water drops, but, even  knowing it, we are in awe when we see it, and from our heart we praise and give thanks to God our Creator and Father.   

RESPONSORIAL PSALM: Ps 25: 4-5, 6-7, 8-9

Your ways, O Lord, are love and truth to those who keep your covenant

Your ways O Lord, make known to me

Teach me your paths

Guide me in your truth and teach me

For you are God my savior.

Your ways, O Lord, are love and truth to those who keep your covenant

Remember that your compassion, O Lord

And your love are from of old

In your kindness remember me

Because of your goodness, O Lord.

Your ways, O Lord, are love and truth to those who keep your covenant

Good and upright is the Lord

Thus he shows sinners the way

He guides the humble to justice

And he teaches the humble his ways.

Your ways, O Lord, are love and truth to those who keep your covenant

«  The psalmist asks God to teach him his ways and to guide him. 

«  That he remember his compassion and his kindness    

«  God, who is good, teaches the way to the sinner, guides the humble to justice, to what is right.  

«  Let  us remember that the justice of God is to make us just like Him, it is not a retributive justice like ours, it is  God’s justice, who loves and gives without measure to all, just and sinners, and he calls all to his love.    He pays the same salary to the one who worked all day long and, to the one who worked only one hour.

SECOND READING  1Pe  3:18-22

*      Christ’s suffering is a suffering for doing good to all.   

*      Christ in his sufferings is our savior and example. 

*      Peter reminds   the story of the flood.

*      He compares the story of the flood with the baptismal bath, which is not for a small group alone, but for everyone who accepts Christ.    

*      Baptism is not a bath that cleanses material dirt, but it is the commitment done with God to cultivate an

Irreproachable conscience through the resurrection of Christ Jesus.  With his death and resurrection he has open for us the way to the Father.   

*      Christ Jesus is glorified by the Father “at his right hand”. This image reminds us of the courts of the kings where he or she who sits at the right hand of the king is the most important person of the kingdom after the king.   


ü  After the baptism of the Lord, the same spirit of God who came on him at his baptism, leads him to the desert.     

ü  The desert was for the people of Israel the place of temptation and also the place to make decisions.   

ü  In the desert the people will learn to trust in God  

ü  Jesus who has taken our human condition will be tempted  

ü  He is the perfect Israel, who in the peace and contemplative silence of the desert chooses the way of the Father. He is also the new Adam who lives in harmony with the wild animals, thus transforming the desert into an inner Paradise where the angels of God are present.   

ü  Mark does not tell us what the temptations were.   

ü  But Mark makes clear the triumph of Jesus over the devil, and his complete trust in the Father’s providence.  

ü  Jesus the new Adam has a peaceful relationship with creation, which reminds to us  the first Adam in the garden, in peace with the animals to whom he gave their names, this means that the animals were subjected to him.   

ü  Jesus in the desert makes also real the prophecy of Isaiah… the lamb with the wolf, the cow with the bear… Jesus makes real the dream of God over creation .

ü  The forty days makes us think of the 40 years of the people of Israel in the desert   Ex 34:28,.

ü  Satan the tempter,

o   In the book of Job Satan accuses Job,  (see the beginning of the book of Job)   

o   In the book of Revelation he is the one who opposes the  divine plan    Rev 12:7-9

ü  When John is put in prison Jesus returns to Galilee to begin his ministry of proclaiming the Kingdom.   

ü  He proclaims:    

o   That the time is fulfilled, what time? The time of God’s promises  

o   The kingdom of God is at hand, so close that Jesus is this Kingdom.  He is close to everyone, but not all of us allow him to enter into our heart.    

o   What does he ask  from each one of us, and from society in order that the kingdom may be present.   

§  To believe in the Good News. Sometimes they are so good that it is difficult for us to believe them.   

§  To believe is to allow God to enter in our heart, to change us, to make us like his Son who died for all. This is the reason why we cannot exclude anyone.   

§  Only in this way the world will believe and will be able to change.   



Time revealed the false vocation of some of these free women, one of them escaped by the roofs after 14 months to the great scandal of all the people  who until then considered us as angels. The other two died without any vocation to religious life. The ones, who professed, were good religious even though they gave me much work.

I cannot say of these young ladies what St. Teresa says about her first nuns: that it seemed God was choosing those fitted for that house. I can also say that God our Lord sent them to me expressly to purify my soul. I only found rest with the first three, for it seems God gave them to me for my consolation and help. They have been untiring in works and hardships, always contented and happy in the midst of the many trials and tribulations we experienced in the beginnings. I think the Lord will make the three of them saints.

            A few days after the apostate escaped, our Lord told me: “How could third order be a perfect copy of the Apostolic College had you not had a Judas?” then, I felt the pain that pierced the Most Holy Soul of our Divine Savior for the loss of the unfortunate Judas. That time  we remained twelve and the devil was roaming around sowing weeds everywhere seeking how to dissolve  this holy house, but, since this happened, all became much more fervent, what they were not before. Our Lord always acted in this His work in the same way: from all things that the Devil tried to get evil, God our Lord was obtaining greater good. Blessed may He be for so much goodness!   (María Antonia París, Foundress of the Religious of Mary Immaculate Claretian Missionary Sisters, Autobiography 200-201)

With God's help this situation was completely changed. I appointed Father Anthony Barjau, a priest whom heaven had endowed with a gift for educating young men and boys, as rector of the seminary. This good churchman by his winning ways put them back on course again, bringing them to practice their religion and apply themselves to their studies. Thus they finally began to show some progress, both in virtue and learning, and many of them have been ordained or soon will be.

Since the need for priests was pressing and the seminary could provide none for a long time, I hit upon the plan of writing to several Catalonian seminarians who were nearing the end of their studies and inviting them to come to Santiago to finish them. I ordained 36 of them with title to the benefice of a sacristy and the right to apply later for a parish of their own. (Anthony Mary Claret, Founder of the Religious of Mary Immaculate Claretian Missionary Sisters, Autobiography 556-557.)


CERVANTES GABARRÓN, Juan, “Primera Carta de Pedro” en Comentario al Nuevo Testamento. La Casa de la Biblia. Estella, Navarra 1995.

GUILLÉN TORRALBA, Juan, “Génesis” en Comentario al Antiguo Testamento I. La Casa de la Biblia, Estella Navarra, 1997.

LA BIBLIA DE NUESTRO PUEBLO, comentarios de Luis Alonso Schökel. Misioneros Claretianos, 2010.

RAVASI, GIANFRANCO. Según las Escrituras.  Doble Comentario de las lecturas del domingo. Año B.  San Pablo, Bogotá,Colombia 2005.

VIÑAS, José María cmf y BERMEJO, Jesús, cmf.  “Autobiography” of St. Anthony Mary Claret. 


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