Day Five: Misa De Gallo
20 December 2016 and the night before (Simbang Gabi)
Lk. 1: 26-38
Introduction: Our model and inspiration for this 5th day of Simbang Gabi or Misa de Gallo is MARY and her willingness to surrender herself totally to God and His Will. Even in our times, Mary appears though rarely with a clarion call for us her children as it happened to the 3 children at Fatima every 13th from May to October 1917. What is the significance for us of these Fatima events? Pope Benedict XVI took pains to spell this out.
(1) The “point of Fatima” was not directed only to the emergence of the disastrous dictatorship of the 20th c. in Russia and Germany. No! but rather to a “critical moment in history” when the whole power of evil came to a head not only through those godless regimes but “in another way is still at work today in our time, in the suffering of the Church and the weakening of the forces of good and of the work of God in the world.” He reminds us that the power of evil is not only in the godless systems of the world but also operating even within the set-up of the Church, of the parishes, among priests and in Religious communities. Our Lady of Fatima asks us to return to Jesus through the threefold path of prayer, daily Communion, and reparation.
(2) Mary asks her children to pray for the conversion of sinner because it is sin that causes the violence and conflict, the division and war that is being waged even today. We need to pray as individuals and as communities. Our prayers, whether personal or communal should include the needs of others, of the world and of the Church.
(3) The best prayer and offering we can do is to participate in the Eucharist. In the Eucharist, we participate in communion at the deepest level because we unite ourselves in the total self-offering of Jesus Christ to God for the whole of the human race.
Conclusion: In the message of Fatima, Mary is calling on all children to pray, to do penance, and to conversion and reconciliation with our God.
Most Rev. Antonio R. Tobias, DD
Bishop of Novaliches