LECTIO DIVINA: XV Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle A

1

Translated by Fray Hubert Dunstan Decena, OAR

Mt. 13:1-23

A. Invoking the Holy Spirit

We invoke the Holy Spirit using the words of St. Augustine.

Come, Holy Spirit, by whom every devout soul, who believes in Christ is sanctified to become a citizen of the City of God! (en. Ps 45:8) Come, Holy Spirit, grant that we receive the motions of God, put in us your flame, enlighten us and raise us up to God. (s. 128,4) Amen.

B. Lectio

With hearts well disposed, with serenity, read slowly the following words, savoring them and allowing yourself to be touched by them.

On that day, Jesus went out of the house and sat down by the sea. Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat down, and the whole crowd stood along the shore. And he spoke to them at length in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. As he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky ground , where it had little soil. It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep, and when the sun rose it was scorched, and it withered for lack of roots. Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it. But some seed fell on rich soil and produced fruit, a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold. Whoev3er has ears ought to hear.”

The disciples approached him and said, “Why do you speak to them in parables?” He said to them in reply, “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted. To anyone who has, more will be granted and he will grow rich; from anyone who has not, even what he has will be taken away. This is why I speak to them in parables, because ‘they look and do not see and hear and do not understand.’ Isaiah’s prophecy is fulfilled in them, which says: “You shall indeed hear but not understand, you shall indeed look but never see. Gross is the heart of this people, they will hardly hear with their ears, they have closed their eyes, lest they see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand with their heart and be converted, and I heal them.”

“But blessed are your eyes, because they see, and your ears, because they hear. Amen, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.”

“Hear then the parable of the sower. The seed sown on the path is the one who hears the word of the kingdom without understanding it, and the evil one comes and steals away what was sown in his heart. The seed sown on the rocky ground is the one who hears the word and receives it at once with joy. But he has no root and lasts only a time. When some tribulation or persecution comes because of the word, he immediately falls away. The seed sown among thorns is the one who hears the word, but then worldly anxiety and the lure of riches choke the word and it bears no fruit. But the seed sown on rich soil is the one who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and yields a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold,”

C. Meditatio

Let us now meditate with the commentary of St. Augustine on these words of the Gospel according to St. Matthew.

“Pay attention, dear brother, to see how I go proving by the Scriptures. When the Lord said that the sower went out to sow, and the one part fell in the foot path, another part in rocky ground, and another among thorns, he himself deigned to explain the parable. And when he arrived at the part of the rocky ground, he said thus: These are those who hear the word and upon hearing it, they were happy for a moment; but upon suffering tribulation because of the word, they are at once scandalized. What did he say about those that sprouted among rocks? That when the sun came out they withered, since its roots were not deep. Thus it is, they are those who for a short time were happy because of the word they heard, but when persecution comes because of the word, they wither. Why do they wither? Because they do not have consistent root. What is the root? Charity. Thus says the Apostle: Be rooted and founded on charity. Thus, just as the root of all evil is avarice, so also the root of all good is charity. You know this and I repeat it frequently; but why do I want to remind you of it right now? In order that you may better under- stand the text of the Psalm and you may know that upon talking about the midday devil, it is the furious harassment of persecution. The Lord says: The sun arose and the plant withered, for lack of root. And upon explaining why the plant withered under the sun, he said that when persecution is unleashed, they do not persevere because its root is not deep. Here the midday devil is understood as a strong persecution” (en. Ps. 90:2, 8).     

To you is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but not to them. He who has shall be given. Who has so that it is given to him except he to whom it has been given? On the other hand, he who has not, even what he has will be taken away. Well then, who is he that has nothing except he to whom nothing has been given? Why is it then that to one something is given and to the other no? I do not fear to say it: This is the depth of the cross. I know not the depth of God’s judgment, we cannot scrutinize it nor contemplate it, we proceed the best we can. I see what I can but not from where this ability comes, except up to what I come to see at present: I know that this is a gift from God. But why to this one yes, and to that one no? It is too much for me, it is an abyss, it is the depth of the cross” (s. 165, 5).

D. Oratio

With the text, let us now pray from the depths of our heart. I suggest the following phrases and questions that can awaken in you dialogue with God, and at the same time can give rise to affections and sentiments in your dialogue with God. Do not move to the next phrase or question if you can still continue dialoguing with God in one of them. It is not a matter of exhausting the list, but of helping you to pray with some points that better fit your personal experience.

a. “Why do they wither? Because they do not have consistent root. What is the root? Charity” (en. Ps. 90, 2,8).

  • What is the root of your life?
  • What foundation has the word of God found in you?

b. Why is it that to one it is given and to the other no? I do not fear to say it: this is the depth of the cross” (s. 165, 5).

  • How do you confront the mysteries of God’ plan?
  • How do you receive the gifts God gives you?

c. Pray with this phrase: “Lord, make my heart a good soil.”

E. Contemplatio.

I propose to you some points for affective interior contemplation. Once again, you need not follow all of it, rather you can choose what fits your personal experience.

a. Contemplate how the seed of God’s word has fallen into your heart. Contemplate how it grows. Seek to give it space in your interior and allow it to fully develop in you. Contemplate how it grows and becomes strong in your interior. Contemplate and thank God for the gift.

b. Contemplate how Christ removes the brambles of inordinate aspirations and desires from your heart. Contemplate how Christ removes the stones of your sins, that impede the word of God from taking roots; and finally contemplate how Christ puts his own seed, the seed of his word, in your heart. Contemplate how this seed grows and develops. Give thanks to God and contemplate what you have to remove from your life to let the word of God flourish. Contemplate and ask for the grace.

F. Communicatio

Think of everything that you can share with those around you about the experience you had with God, especially about allowing the word of God to grow and develop in your heart to bear much fruit. The following points can help you to share with your community the experience of the lectio divina on this text.

  • What have I discovered about God and about myself in this moment of prayer?
  • How can I apply this text of Scripture at this moment of my life? What light does it give me? What challenges does it put before me?
  • What concrete commitment does this text of Scripture ask of me in my spiritual life, in my community life?
  • What has been my dominant sentiment during this moment of prayer?

Final Prayer of St. Augustine

Turning towards the Lord: Lord God, Father Almighty, with pure heart, as far as our littleness permits, allow us to give you our most devoted and sincere thanks, begging with all our strength from your particular goodness, that you deign to hear our petitions according to your good will, that by your power you may drive away the enemy from all our thoughts and actions; that you increase our faith, govern our mind and give us spiritual thoughts and bring us to your happiness through your Son Jesus Christ, our Lord, who with you lives and reigns in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen (en. Ps. 150:8).

“In this life let us sow in tears. But what shall we sow? Good works. The works of mercy are our seeds” (en. Ps. 125, 11).

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena, OAR

Fray Hubert Dunstan Decena, OAR

Priest/Religious/Bible Professor of the Order of Augustinian Recollects in the Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno.

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< 2023 >
January
SMTuWThFS
12
  • All day
    January 2, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Bro. Conrado Flores, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Emma Toro, SAR (Valencia Chapter)
    Sis. Marcelina Nicolas, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Erlinda Casaje, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Arsenia Villanueva (Trial / Urbiztondo Chapter)
    Charlene Catchillar (RAY-Urbiztondo)
    Jorge Datuin (RAY-Urbiztondo)

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION

    (2021-2023)
    Fray Chrislean Rey Pamilaga

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Rizalina Salera, SAR (Cavite Chapter)

3
  • All day
    January 3, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Br. Danny Cabuslay Jr. (aspirant)
    Sr. Ma. Bella Mojica, AR
    Sis. Basilisa Espinola, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Carmencita Abis, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Melodina Paragat, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Sis. Estelita Buenavista, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Angelina Bacalso, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Tita Montemayor (Tondo Chapter / Trial)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Clemencia Ranin, AR

4
  • All day
    January 4, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Bro. Ernil Orbecido, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Sis. Mary Grace Susas, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Cristina Domingo, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Bro. Nenito Javarez (Puerto Prtincesa Chapter / Trial)
    Fran Cheska Marie Andan (RAY-Laray)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Regina Cadiz, AR
    +Sr. Adelaida Elli, AR

5
  • All day
    January 5, 2023

    FUNERAL OF THE LATE +POPE-EMERITUS BENEDICT XVI

    BIRTHDAY

    Br. Jude Dacullo (postulant)
    Sis. Estelita Divinagracia, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Emiliana Carao, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Bro. Jose Pepito Bonete Jr., SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Yulanda Lim, SAR (Trial / Miranila Chapter)
    Leila Barizo (RAY-Cavite)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Fray Casiano Cosmilla
    +Sr. Ma. Cleofe Claro, AR

6
  • All day
    January 6, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sis. Sylvia Evina, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Grace Aba-a, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Aurora Decipolo, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Remedios Solatan, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Dominga Torregosa, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Juana de la Merced, AR
    +Bro. Rustico Magdales, SAR (Manila Chapter)

7
  • All day
    January 7, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sis. Eliza Stubbs, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Lorelie Cabanes, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

8
  • All day
    January 8, 2023

    SOLEMNITY OF THE EPIPHANY

    HOMETOWN THANKSGIVING MASS

    Fray Cristito Rey Tepace, OAR
    St. Michael the Archangel Parish Church
    Laoang, Northern Samar / @1600H

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Ian Anthony Espartero
    Sr. Leticia Cerdeño, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION

    Most Rev. Julito Cortes, D.D. (Diocese of Dumaguete)

9
  • All day
    January 9, 2023

    FEAST OF THE BAPTISM OF THE LORD

    PROVINCE-LEVEL CHRISTMAS PARTY
    Venue: Provincial Curia
    Time: 1200H

    BIRTHDAY

    Br. Joshua Miguel Salmon (postulant)
    Sr. Rosario Bianes, AR
    Sis. Marcelina Taguinod, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Dominga Gargarita, AR

10
  • All day
    January 10, 2023

    OAR FORMANDS’ CONVENTION START
    Venue: CARES, Baguio City
    Inclusive Dates: January 10-12, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Br. Jayson Solmayor (postulant)
    Sis. Shirley Ostia (Tondo Chapter / Trial)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Ma. Luz Asuncion Nitura, AR
    +Sr. Paulina de la Purisima Corazon de Maria, AR

11
  • All day
    January 11, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Catalina Ruiz, AR
    Sis. Elena Dagdag, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Ian Gabrielle Canlubo (RAY-Cavite)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Ma. Zita Lloren, AR
    +Sis. Elena Caballero, SAR (San Carlos Chapter) f

12
  • All day
    January 12, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Reynaldo Jaranilla
    Sis. Josephine Guinto, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Ma. Fortunata Gaspillo, AR
    +Bro. Hilario Torcedo, SAR (Baguio Chapter)

13
  • All day
    January 13, 2023

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION

    (1998-2023)
    Archbp. Jose Palma, D.D. (Archdiocese of Cebu)

    BIRTHDAY

    Bro. Jonathan Casiño, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Bro. Antonio Sonsona, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Mo. Rosario Rosales, AR

14
  • All day
    January 14, 2023

    HOMETOWN THANKSGIVING MASS

    Fray James Erold Gatinao, OAR
    St. Joseph the Husband of Mary Parish Church
    Poblacion, Narra, Palawan / @900H

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Emilia Madrigal, AR
    Bro. Jose Valdez, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Luisa Gumiran, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Bro. Patrich Miguel Ajos (Bacolod Chapter / Trial)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Esterlita Gracia, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    +Sis. Aurea Figura, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    +Sis. Vicenta Prado, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

15
  • 4:04 PM
    January 15, 2023

    FEAST OF THE STO. NINO

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Anthony Irineo
    Sr. Ma. Marcela de la Cruz, AR
    Bro. Maximo Epanto, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Ma. Virgen de la Consolacion, AR

16
  • All day
    January 16, 2023

    COMMEMORATION OF THE DEAD RELATIVES OF THE MEMBERS OF THE ORDER

    ANNUAL RETREAT (THIRD BATCH)
    Retreat Master: Fr. Elias Ayuban Jr., CMF
    Theme: “Synodality and Charismatic Identity”
    Venue: Talavera House of Prayer, Cebu City
    Inclusive Dates: January 15-19, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Br. Jhon Russel Manalstas (aspirant)
    Br. Janrhey Palmis (aspirant)
    Mo. Maria del Carmen, OAR (Bacolod)
    Sr. Zerah Cordero, AR
    Sis. Alice Mojica, SAR (Cavite Chapter)
    Sis. Bernarda Tan, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Melissa Sandil, SAR (Manila Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Lucia Degamo, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    +Sis. Ma. Amelia Casiño, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    +Bro. Rustico Magdales, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    +Sis. Cleofe Alvarez, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    +Sis. Carmencita Victorino, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    +Sis. Lucila Young, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

17
  • All day
    January 17, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Corvin Maturan
    Sis. Belen Taniagao, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Celedonia de la Santissima Trinidad, AR
    +Sr. Cesaria Barbarona, AR

18
  • All day
    January 18, 2023

    WEEK OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY
    January 18-25, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Joseph Dexter Palagtiosa
    Sis. Guia Gonzales, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Christina So, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Rhea Canania (RAY-Urbiztondo)

19
  • All day
    January 19, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    FRAY MIGUEL ÁNGEL HERNÁNDEZ, OAR (Prior General)
    Sr. Cleofe Maria Agua, AR
    Sis. Angelica Tejada, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Myrna Amante, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Teodora Delus, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Sis. Sheny Valerio, SAR (Urbiztondo Chapter)
    Sis. Rosario Grace Roldan, SAR (Manila Chapter / Trial)

20
  • All day
    January 20, 2023

    ST. SEBASTIAN (Patron Saint of Manila & Cavite Communities, Diocese of Bacolod)

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Adelina Reyes, AR
    Sis. Mercedes Velada, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Bibiana Madrietta, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

21
  • All day
    January 21, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Urbano Galanido
    Fray Jerome Virtudazo
    Sis. Leticia de Silva, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Sis. Alicia Catulong, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Ofelia Balocating, SAR (Urbiztondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Flaviana Minoza, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

22
  • All day
    January 22, 2023

    SUNDAY OF THE WORD OF GOD

    [Pope   Francis’   Apostolic   Letter, Motu   proprio Aperuit  illis, published on  30 September 2019, establishes that “the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time is   to   be   devoted   to   the   celebration, study   and
    dissemination of the Word of God”.]

    BIRTHDAY

    Most Rev. Victor Bendico, DD (Bishop of Baguio)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Bro. Jovito Padua, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)

23
  • All day
    January 23, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Bro. Marciano Cleofas, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Gloria Acosta, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Esterlina Silva, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Rose Marie Gaspar, SAR (Valencia Chapter)
    Sis. Melba Cariño, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Judith Mondejar (RAY-Caidiocan)
    Kathrine Bacalso (RAY-Laray)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Gertrudis del Pilar, AR
    +Sr. Cresencia Vailoces, AR
    +Sis. Felisa Torrecampo, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

24
  • All day
    January 24, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Ma. Paz Bawagan, AR
    Sr. Faith Niña Fuertes, AR
    Sis. Florida San Juan, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Raymunda Co, SAR (Laray Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Paz Chico, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Analyn Martinez (RAY-Valencia)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Bro. Teofilo Jabonero, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

25
  • All day
    January 25, 2023

    SOLEMNITY OF THE CONVERSION OF ST. PAUL

    BIRTHDAY

    Bro. Rodelio Gasparillo, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Bro. Feddie Junsay Jr., SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Joelle Maria Mendoza (RAY-Miranila)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Ma. Lucia Sagmit, AR

26
  • All day
    January 26, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Cristopher Maspara
    Br. Ken Joshua Manalo (aspirant)
    Sis. Henrietta Morales, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Emenciana Cabaral, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION

    (2005-2023)
    Most Rev. Reynaldo Evangelista, D.D. (Diocese of Imus)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Margarita Zafra, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

27
  • All day
    January 27, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Marilyn Cula, AR
    Sr. Remilyn Leonido, AR
    Sis. Evelyn Balingit, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Florepis Vergara, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Welim Husayan (Laray Chapter / Trial)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Murita Jara, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    +Sis. Eusebia Siarez, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

28
  • All day
    January 28, 2023

    HOMETOWN THANKSGIVING MASS

    Fray Julius James Tinapao, OAR
    Sto. Tomas de Villanueva Parish Church
    Bayawan City, Negros Oriental / @1000H

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Louie Gabinete
    Sis. Lita Lorenzo, SAR (Manila Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Fernanda del Pilar, AR
    Sr. Ines Garcia, AR

29
  • All day
    January 29, 2023

    4TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

    70th WORLD LEPROSY DAY BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Francisca Rojas, AR
    Sis. Lourdes Insigne, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Anecita Paglinawan, SAR (Laray Chapter)
    Sis. Angelina Duhig, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Jona Mendoza (RAY-Miranila)
    Marielet Vital (RAY-Urbiztondo)

30
  • All day
    January 30, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Jonathan Caballero
    Sr. Angelica Fuentes, AR
    Sr. Pascualina Peral, AR
    Sis. Violeta Siozon, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Fedencia de la Cruz, SAR (Brooke’s Point Chapter)
    Sis. Minerva Alcarde, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Evangeline Castro, SAR (Urbiztondo Chapter)
    Sis. Julieta Dawa, SAR (Laray Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Bro. Jay Rosauro Cortez, SAR (Manila Chapter

31
  • All day
    January 31, 2023

    APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO CONGO-KINSHASA
    (January 31 – February 3)

    DAY 1: ROME-KINSHASA

    07:55     Departure by airplane from Rome/Fiumicino International Airport to Kinshasa
    15:00     Arrival at Kinshasa “Ndjili” International Airport
    15:00     OFFICIAL WELCOME
    16:30     WELCOME CEREMONY at the “Palais de la Nation”
    16:45      COURTESY VISIT TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC in the “Salle Présidentielle” of the “Palais de la Nation”
    17:30      MEETING WITH AUTHORITIES, CIVIL SOCIETY AND THE DIPLOMATIC CORPS in the garden of the “Palais de la Nation”

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Josephine Ativo, AR
    Sis. Saturnina Antolihao, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Lance Raven Lapinig (RAY-Talisay)

    

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