September 26, Tuesday in the 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Daily Readings: Ezra 6:7-8, 12b, 14-20, Luke 8:19-21
Churches are not just places of worship for Catholics. At its most profound level, it is where we feel the presence of God, from the beautiful art embedded in its walls to the Holy Eucharist being celebrated there every day. It was Saint John Chrysostom who said: “God has set up churches like harbors along the coast, so that you may take refuge there out of the swirl of the earthly cares and find peace and quiet.”
We are fully encouraged to support our local parishes through our love offerings, either in kind or monetary, so that these physical structures remain in an excellent state fit for worship. We see the same action in the First Reading, which narrates the rebuilding of the temple during the reign of King Darius.
The people came together to accomplish the task God had commanded, and when finished, the children of God “celebrated the dedication of this house of God with joy.” (Ezra 6:16) We beautify our churches because they reveal to us God’s eternal beauty, which inspires us to celebrate the sacraments with awe and reverence.
However, a church would be meaningless if the people who gather within it are rotten in sin. A beautiful place of worship will quickly diminish if it does not lead us to holiness. In the Gospel, Christ reminds us that the people He truly considers family "are those who hear the Word of God and act on it."
We must not only spend time in prayer but also offer a share of our blessings to the church. We should also let His teachings actively shape our lives for the better and teach us to share the love we receive through the sacraments. Within the dwellings of our churches, we find peace with God. But once the celebration has ended, we are sent out into the world as His witnesses.
These two are the foundations that keep the House of God on earth sturdy and holy: the church where we experience God through the liturgies, and the Church that upholds the teachings of the Lord in every single moment of their lives.
Radio Veritas Asia (RVA), a media platform of the Catholic Church, aims to share Christ. RVA started in 1969 as a continental Catholic radio station to serve Asian countries in their respective local language, thus earning the tag “the Voice of Asian Christianity.” Responding to the emerging context, RVA embraced media platforms to connect with the global Asian audience via its 21 language websites and various social media platforms.