A Daily Gospel Reflection by Dn. Ray Gallego for November 20th, 2023

The Gospel according to Luke (18:35-43) 

As Jesus approached Jericho a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging, and hearing a crowd going by, he inquired what was happening. They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” He shouted, “Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me!” The people walking in front rebuked him, telling him to be silent, but he kept calling out all the more, “Son of David, have pity on me!” Then Jesus stopped and ordered that he be brought to him; and when he came near, Jesus asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” He replied, “Lord, please let me see.” Jesus told him, “Have sight; your faith has saved you.” He immediately received his sight and followed him, giving glory to God. When they saw this, all the people gave praise to God.

REFLECTION: I have a couple of questions for you, and I want you to really think about your answer, “How blind are you? How blind is this society that we live in? This society is so good at focusing on the negative but never reciprocates that passion for the good things in our life. Just look at what our news media puts out.

How blind are you to the love and blessings that surround you? Think about all the big things we miss but how about the things we consider little but are really huge? Things like embracing your child or grandchild; or noticing the beautiful Fall colors around us; or someone making me smile or better yet to laugh out loud.

Just a few of weeks ago, I went up to the high mountain and was fly-fishing the Sierra rivers. When I drive up, I start to get excited to the point where I get what I call “Froggy”. At that point, I just can’t wait to get into the river and fish. So, I was finally in the river. I was walking up stream and casting then walking up stream and casting until I find the right hole. And then, BAMM! FISH ON! And what a charge! A half a day goes by and a few fish later, I find myself haunted by these waters and just casting and hitting. Then this voice comes inside on me. This voice said to me, “STOP and look up, look down, and look around you”. That voice was my therapist on the river, God himself. Telling me to stop and enjoy the peace that surrounds me not to mention the beauty. It was then when I noticed the  fall colors of the Cottonwoods, Aspens, and Oak trees. The water below me was so clear that I could see the different shapes and colors of the rocks. Then God told me, “Sit and enjoy what surrounds you” and so I did. I walked to the bank and reclined against the high bank. After a few moments, I noticed an Osprey diving in the water for food … WOW; I heard an eagle flying over me … how majestic; then I saw a herd of elk strolling by … OK God, I get it. It was at that moment that I realized that I was so focused on fishing that I was blind to everything else around me.

In our busy lives that we choose to live, we tend to get “froggy” about getting something done at home, church, work, kids, friends, money etc. and we are oblivious to the beauty that surrounds us. We are so busy, that we don’t stop and listen to the obvious blessings that surround us each and every day. We prefer to dwell on what you have to get done because there’s a list of things to do behind that. We need to use our eyes fully, to relish every nuance of color that surrounds us, to pick up the life and feeling in others’ faces, and to appreciate and be open to the glorious world of vision which I would miss if I was like this blind man.

Notice that as this blind beggar cried out, even though there were obstacles put in his way. The people “rebuked him, telling him to be silent.” But even this was a gift because it enabled Bartimaeus to cry out all the more. This is the case with us, when obstacles arise in our lives, such as distractions, temptations, a lack of consolation, or any other challenge, we must recognize these obstacles. Allow yourself to get “froggy” with the things that God wants you to recognize.

ACTION OF THE DAY: Be attentive to the presence of God as He passes by, waiting for you to call to Him. Then, cry out to Him and beg Him to come closer.


Actual image from my trip

A Daily Gospel Reflection by Dn. Mike and Martha Hidalgo for November 17th, 2023

The Holy Gospel According to Luke (17:26-37)

Jesus said to his disciples: “As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be in the days of the Son of Man; they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage up to the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.  Similarly, as it was in the days of Lot: they were eating, drinking, buying, selling, planting, building; on the day when Lot left Sodom, fire and brimstone rained from the sky to destroy them all.  So it will be on the day the Son of Man is revealed.  On that day, someone who is on the housetop and whose belongings are in the house must not go down to get them, and likewise one in the field must not return to what was left behind. Remember the wife of Lot.  Whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses it will save it.  I tell you, on that night there will be two people in one bed; one will be taken, the other left.  And there will be two women grinding meal together; one will be taken, the other left.” They said to him in reply, “Where, Lord?”  He said to them, “Where the body is, there also the vultures will gather.”

Reflection:  As we get close to the end of the liturgical year, the Gospels speak of the “end times.”  In today’s Gospel, which is a continuation of yesterday’s, Jesus is telling his disciples what it will be like when the Son of Man returns.  Jesus tells them about two stories that they would be familiar with as both are in the Old Testament.  The first is about Noah’s ark and the great flood.  The second is when Sodom and Gomorrah are destroyed.  In both of these events, people were going about their usual lives as if nothing was going to happen.  Then on a particular day, destruction comes suddenly and without warning. 

How does all this relate to us today?  We know that there will be a second coming of Jesus.  This is something we pray for at each mass.  In the Nicene Creed, we say, “He will come again in glory…”  Another time, after the consecration, the priest says, “The mystery of faith.”  One of our responses  is, “We proclaim your death, O Lord, and profess your resurrection until you come again.” Jesus himself tells us he will come again, but we do not know the day or hour.  He tells us, “it is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has fixed by his own authority.” 

In the recent past there have been events and people that predicted the end is coming and even giving us a date when that would happen.  Two that I remember are evangelist Harold Camping telling us the 2nd coming of Christ was going to be on May 21, 2011.  He had billboards telling us to be ready because Jesus was returning.  The second was December 21, 2012.  This was the last date on the Mayan calendar.  Well, we are all still here. 

Jesus tells us that the Kingdom of God is among us.  We are to continue living our life in grace and to be spiritually prepared to build up the Kingdom of God here and now.  We need to trust in God and not be preoccupied when the end of the world will be.  If we trust in God, we should not be concerned with the “end Times.”  I believe most of us will die a natural death before Jesus returns.  In a way, that will be our “end time” and we will see the second coming, when we stand before the Lord after we die. 

Action for the Day:  Today, reflect on those things that keep us spiritually prepared.  It could be a number of things, like prayer, praying the rosary, reading the Bible, going to mass during the week or other things.  Whatever it is that you do, keep on doing it to build up the Kingdom of God here and now.  Trust in the Lord, and be ready at all times, for we do not know when the Son of Man will return. 

Audio Reflection:

a woman kissing the sculpture of jesus christ

A Daily Gospel Reflection by Dn. Paul & Ana Machuca for November 16th, 2023

The Gospel according to Luke (17:20-25)

Asked by the Pharisees when the Kingdom of God would come, Jesus said in reply, “The coming of the Kingdom of God cannot be observed, and no one will announce, ‘Look, here it is,’ or ‘There it is.’ For behold, the Kingdom of God is among you.” Then he said to his disciples, “The days will come when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of Man, but you will not see it. There will be those who will say to you, ‘Look, there he is,’ or ‘Look, here he is.’ Do not go off, do not run in pursuit. For just as lightning flashes and lights up the sky from one side to the other, so will the Son of Man be in his day. But first he must suffer greatly and be rejected by this generation.”


Today’s gospel provides a challenge to both those who heard these words from Jesus and to every Christian who wonders about dying and heaven. There is nothing more significant to a human being than our own mortality. And, what happens after we die? Yes, our faith assures us that God’s promise of eternal life is a reality. But how and when will it happen? We probably wonder about this because, like most things, it is not in our control. And we don’t like when we are not in control.

First let’s look at when the kingdom of God will come. Or in other words, when Jesus will return. Jesus said that when he returned heaven and earth would become one and he will separate the goats from the sheep. The day of judgement will be upon us all. However, Jesus said we know not the hour nor the day. Chances are none of us living today will experience the Parousia. But one thing is certain, we will all die and be in the presence of Jesus. But it appears Jesus is trying to say that the kingdom of heaven came when He was born. He brought heaven to earth through his humble act of becoming one of us. That is why he said, “For behold, the Kingdom of God is among you.” No need to wait. He is here.

Second, when will this happen for us? Again, we do not know. Based on our awareness of how fragile life is and our own experience with loved ones who “go home” we know it can be at any time. So why does it seem that our lives do not reflect the urgency of this fact. Let’s go back to the concept of control. We do a pretty good job of fooling ourselves into thinking we control our lives and our destiny. However, in moments of clarity, we realize this is not true. Yes, we have free will but that does not change that we are the created not the creator.

Regardless of when we die, we do not have to wait to be in the presence of Jesus. He promised he would not leave us orphaned. He is with us, around us, within us. Although we cannot have the full divine experience of heaven yet, this is the gift that awaits all who love him. And the beautiful thing is, we can share in the preview of things to come, now.

Action of the day:

Reflect on your life, death, and resurrection. In prayer and with the guidance of the Holy Spirit imagine what it will be like to experience heaven in all its glory. Also consider the reality that even in our wildest dreams we won’t come close. Thank God for the ability to concieve of such a gift and recognize heaven amongst us and rejoice!

A Daily Gospel Reflection by Dn. Carlos & Marieanne Porras for November 15th, 2023

The Gospel, according to Luke (17:11-19) 

As Jesus continued his journey to Jerusalem, he traveled through Samaria and Galilee. As he was entering a village, ten lepers met him. They stood at a distance from him and raised their voice, saying, “Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!” And when he saw them, he said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.” As they were going, they were cleansed. And one of them, realizing he had been healed, returned, glorifying God in a loud voice; and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. He was a Samaritan. Jesus said in reply, “Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?” Then he said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith has saved you.”

REFLECTION:  Jesus, in today’s Gospel makes this reply; “Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? Jesus’ reply was in response to the one leper who returned to Jesus to thank Him.  Ten lepers were healed but only one thanked Him.

I was blessed to have worked for 42 years in the aerospace industry as a Design Engineer.  I received a very good salary, promotions, management position, and the times that I voluntarily looked for a job or had to look for a new job, it was always provided and compensated well. All this, I used to think it was all me and even pated myself on the back thinking, “Carlos you’re great.”  This occurred for about 30 of the 42 years of my engineering career.  It was around 30 years into my career that I had a complete spiritual transformation in my life that opened the eyes of my heart.  It was then that I realized that all my successes were God’s blessing and graces on my family and me.  It was from that transformation that I started to realize and understand how much God was raining His blessings on me.

Throughout our life, God is always blessing us but sadly and too often we take all His blessings for granted and some people may even think it is luck or something they deserve.  We go on our lives too busy and so focused on ourselves that we forget who created us and who we belong to.  We become more like the other nine lepers who failed to properly express their gratitude to Jesus.

Ten lepers were healed and only one of the men is not like the others.  He is the only one who turns back, praising God with a great/big/loud voice – Whatever has happened, this has happened: this man has really gone through a complete or completed transformation. To be oblivious to the fact that God is blessing us or, even worse, to take credit for His blessings as if it were earned by our own efforts, would be a slight to God.  Therefore, we must open the eyes of our heart and offer the only proper response to God and that is to glorify Him with a thankful heart.

Whether we are struggling in our faith journey or may feel we are in a good place with God, the fact is, God has blessed you and I far more than we realize and far more than we deserve.  So, it is important to understand how to respond properly to God’s abundant blessings.

Two responses, a proper and improper, are illustrated for us in this story of Jesus cleansing the ten lepers.  Only one of the ten responded properly and it teaches us all that …

We should respond to God’s blessings by glorifying Him at Jesus’ feet from thankful hearts, and with profound gratitude.

We should glorify Him with much fervor, crying out to Him with passion.  We should, literally and interiorly, fall on our face before Him, at His feet, and thank Him, over and over and over again.  Doing so will always help us to remember the truth that everything we have and everything we are is a gift from God.  An unmerited and undeserved gift of grace.

ACTION FOR THE DAY: Today, reflect upon the depth of the gratitude in your own heart for God’s blessings.  Are your responses more often improper, or do you regularly perceive the graciousness of God?  If you lack in more fullness of gratitude, then ponder this one leper in today’s Gospel.


A Daily Gospel Reflection by Dn. Chuck & Linda McDaniels for November 14th, 2023

The Gospel according to Luke (17:7-10) 

Jesus said to the Apostles:
“Who among you would say to your servant
who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field,
‘Come here immediately and take your place at table’?
Would he not rather say to him,
‘Prepare something for me to eat.
Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink.
You may eat and drink when I am finished’?
Is he grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded?
So should it be with you.
When you have done all you have been commanded, say,
‘We are unprofitable servants;
we have done what we were obliged to do.'”


These seem to be somewhat harsh words from Jesus, don’t they?  It seems to be saying that if we only do what we are commanded, we should consider ourselves as not meeting the standard in some way, right?  What does Jesus mean by these words?

In the past, I’ve been in positions of supervision, where I had to write “performance reviews” for employees who reported to me.  I remember clearly the guidelines that my boss and our HR department gave me for doing these reviews: the majority of employees (so the majority of those I would be reviewing) would merit a “meets expectations” ranking.  It did not mean that their work was substandard, or that they weren’t motivated.  It just meant that they adequately performed the job for which they were hired.  It’s not a bad thing, but that wording sounds a lot like what Jesus said in today’s Gospel.

It’s a reminder of how we ought to view our faith.  If we have in our minds that our focus should only be on meeting the various rules of our faith (you know, like going to Mass on Sundays, abstaining from meat on Fridays in Lent, fasting on Ash Wednesday & Good Friday, and so on, just out of obligation), then we are missing the point.  We are like those servants that Jesus spoke of who saw themselves as “unprofitable”.  Why was that?  Because they only did the minimum out of obligation, not out of thanks to the God who created them and who loved them.

Each of us should not view our lives of faith merely for how we kept the “obligations”.  We should challenge ourselves to go beyond the “obligations” and to ask God to help us to live the example of Jesus by showing that same “radical love” that Jesus did.  Let us love and forgive and give as much as we can.  Doing so will have effects that we can never imagine, but it will result in the ultimate positive “performance review” from our Lord when we appear before Him to give an accounting of our lives and how we cared for His “least children”.

Action for the Day:   

Ask yourself today: have I lived out my faith only out of obligation?  If so, take time today to ask God to help you see how beloved you are, and how beloved everyone whom you meet is in God’s eyes.  Then, ask God to give you the gift of being able to love like He does in some small way or some kind action.

If you would like to hear this reflection, click the link below!