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Category: Fr. Jude’s Homilies

Fr. Jude's Homilies

Fr. Jude’s Homily for Solemnity of the Epiphany

YOUR STAR MUST SHINE
The word “epiphany” comes from the Greek epiphainen, a verb that means “to shine upon,” “to manifest,” or “to make known.” Thus, the feast of the Epiphany celebrates the many ways that Christ has made Himself known to the world, mainly the three events that manifested the mission and divinity of Christ: the visit of the Magi (Matthew 2:1-12), the baptism of Jesus (Mark 1:9-11), and the miracle at Cana (John 2:1-11).

Fr. Jude's Homilies

Fr. Jude’s Homily for Holy Family

Homily of the 31st December 2017, Holy Family Sunday

In most countries, Christmas is a Family Festival. Most families have re-united once again. It is within this context of Family union at Christmas that we reflect on The Holy Family of Nazareth, Jesus, Mary and Joseph. Why do we call it “The Holy Family”? Obviously it is the most holy of families. Every member of this Family is Holy! It is the family of Jesus Son of God, whose mother, Mary was immaculately conceived through the Holy Spirit and was sinless all her life. It is equally the Family of Joseph who was Mary’s chaste spouse. It is the model of all Families.

In our modern world there are many attempts to destroy the family and if this takes place, then the society will obviously crumble. This can be corrected if we form HOLY FAMILIES. Being a holy family entails setting apart the family for the LORD. So for our families to be holy we have to choose that which is often contrary to the choices made by other families. We must keep immoral material, shows, etc out of our houses because we ask God to dwell there. We have to be very careful of where children are visiting or staying overnight because other families might allow immorality into their homes, or, simply, not supervise their own children. Being a holy family demands that our homes be places of prayer.

The Word of God must be central in our Homes. We can keep our Families Holy through the family rosary, family prayer at bedtime and we must make it a point to have family prayer before meals. This is very important because the family is the basic unit of society and the Church. It is in the family that we first learn to communicate, and that we learn what is good and bad. It is in the family that we learn what love is because it is in the family that we first receive love. It is in the family that we first learn to forgive and to pray. If they family is holy, then the Church is naturally HOLY. The future of humanity depends on the family because it is through a family that we all come.

Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh, cmf
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Fr. Jude's Homilies

Fr. Jude’s Homily for 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

14th January 2018, Second Sunday in Ordinary time Year B
God’s Call and our Response
God wants to associate humanity (men, women and children) with the announcement of the Kingdom. The Call of Samuel reminds us that every person has a vocation. This entails that God calls individuals and destines them to accomplish their own irreplaceable tasks.

In God we live a life of grace. God calls and man answers. The young Samuel says: “Speak Lord, your servant is listening”. Without the disposition to listen, God keeps silent. When God speaks and man listens, the history of salvation is renewed. Samuel listened to the Word of God and announced it to the people. It is thus seen that the vocation, the call and the mission all go together. God never calls us for nothing. Each of us has a single and special mission to fulfill.

When we recognise Jesus as the Lamb of God ad seek to follow him. He accepts. It is thus an invitation to follow the Master in order to put our steps in His, on the road of paradise. It is only with him that the realisation of this project is possible.

To achieve the mission that God entrusts to us, a union of our hearts with Jesus is necessary. As Christians, we may ask: are we always able like Samuel to lead our brothers and our sisters where we found the good? We have the responsibility to direct our children to answer God’s call. John the Baptist in recognizing Jesus as the Lamb of God helped two of his disciples to follow the Master. Andrew having followed the Master Jesus also brought his brother Simon Peter to discover the Messiah, the Christ whom he had found Are we able to give the possibility to those whom we held by the hand to carry out their life, without us, following Christ as John the Baptist did it?

Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh, cmf
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Fr. Jude's Homilies

Fr. Jude’s Homily for 4th Sunday of Advent, Year B

Homily of the Fourth Sunday of Advent Year B
A thousand years before Christ, God made a plan! It really began with the prophecy of Nathan to King David. The latter had thought it was his pious duty to build a Temple to house the Ark of the Covenant. At first Nathan agreed with him, but then God spoke to Nathan and sent him to David with this message: “You want to build a house for me, but I will build the House of David. My son will come from you, one of your descendants. God had another plan. The plan began with a simple scene: an angel, Gabriel by name, appeared to a young girl, the Virgin Mary, and told her that she would have a child conceived not through a man, but through the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit.
We are part of the wonder of the plan. We are part of the wonder of the Word Made Flesh, the Wonder of Christmas. Each one of us has part of this plan. We might not be the founder of the dynasty like David, nor the mother of the Saviour like Mary, but we are called to lead others to Bethlehem, to lead others to our Lord.
God has a plan for each of us. He tells us in Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know well the plans I have in mind for you—oracle of the LORD—plans for your welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future of hope. In many cases we may not always understand his plan, but we still need to be obedient as we try to fulfill it. Micah 6:8 “You have been told, O mortal, what is good, and what the Lord requires of you: Only to do justice and to love goodness, and to walk humbly with your God.
God has already fulfilled the plan of long ago, revealed to David. He will surely fulfill his promises and plans for us. O Come O Come, Emmanuel. Come and give us the strength and the courage to radiate your presence to a waiting world.

Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh, cmf
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Fr. Jude's Homilies

3B Advent – Fr. Jude’s Homily

Third Sunday of Advent Year B
REJOICE IN THE LORD
Advent is, and remains a time to prepare for the Coming of the Lord and it is a time to be very vigilant. For two Sundays now, focus on preparation has been on conversion and repentance. The theme of joy is planted in the decorum of today’s liturgy with the entrance antiphon from Phil 4: 4-5: “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say, rejoice. Indeed, the Lord is near”. The 3rd Sunday of Advent known as Gaudete Sunday. Gaudete is Latin for “Rejoice”. It is a reminder that as Christians, we are to be joyful people.
One of the greatest, though most neglected of all our Christian obligations is the obligation to rejoice. It is a command taken directly from our second reading of today Paul’s First Letter to the Thessalonians. Paul begins by telling us what we must do at all times. “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).
Despite the widespread consumerism in today’s world which leads people to develop a covetous heart with no place for the poor, God’s joy must be felt. Pope Francis insists on the fact that “The joy of the Gospel fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus. Those who accept his offer of salvation are set from sin, sorrow inner emptiness and loneliness. With Christ joy is constantly born anew” (Evangelii Gaudium 1).
This beginning of Evangelii Gaudium, within the fabric of the teaching of Pope Francis, rings out with surprising vitality, proclaiming the wonderful mystery of the Good News that transforms the life of the person who takes it to heart. We are told the parable of joy: our meeting with Jesus lights up in us its original beauty, the beauty of the face on which the Father’s glory shines (cf. 2Cor 4:6), radiating happiness.
On this note, the Gospel, despite its being radiant with the Glory of Christ’s cross constantly invites us to rejoice. We find this joy at the annunciation (Luke 1:28), the Visitation (Luke 1:47) and in the Magnificat (Luke1:47).
We really do have much to be joyful about! As Catholics, we have gained access into a holy family and a relationship with God. We have been given the opportunity for everlasting life and the assurance that we are loved and will be eternally cared for.
Through the Example of John the Baptist example, let us be that voice crying out in the desert and show the world the Joy that radiates through us. Like John the Baptist, may our faith radiate the truth, that no matter what trial, obstacle, or discomfort comes upon us, we deeply know that Christ is present, and that he will come again offering an eternal life of joy, love, and peace for those who truly embrace him.
The message of this Third Sunday of Advent is simple: Our lives must lead others to rejoice in the Light just as John the Baptist did.
Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh, cmf
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Fr. Jude's Homilies

2B Advent – Fr. Jude’s Homily

Second Sunday of Advent Year B
PREPARE THE WAY OF VIP JESUS
Whenever there is a very important event, there is always need to prepare. This can be a sporting event, the visit of the pope, the president or other very important dignitaries. This entails making everywhere look neat and well kept. Roads are arranged, palm fronts and other decorations are placed especially within the path to be used by those involved. The striking thing is that money which was necessary to maintain the roads and other structures suddenly and miraculously surface.
The Good news we have today is that A VERY IMPORTANT PERSONALITY IS COMING! His name is JESUS CHRIST THE SON OF GOD (cf. Mk 1:1-8). Another part of the Good News is that someone has been sent to prepare the way of the Lord and to make straight his paths. John the Baptist already foretold by the prophet Isaiah (40:3) was this special envoy, messenger or harbinger who paved the way for Christ’s coming. He did this in the Following ways as John Rose Would attest:
1. By an austere lifestyle: he was clothed in Carmel’s skin, eating locust, wild honey and what he could find in the desert. He lived in the Desert and was the wild, ascetic prophet. His life was really his message. Seeing his attire, his food and his crude messages, the people flocked to him and he used the opportunity to preach to them and give them the Baptism of Repentance. In fact “All Judaea and all the people of Jerusalem made their way to him, and as they were baptised by him in the river Jordan they confessed their sins”.
2. By his Preaching about repentance: John’s preaching was centered on a change of heart, a radical change or what we can call a total metanoia. We cannot meet our VIP Jesus without preparation, without working for our conversion and without changing our lifestyle. In fact John makes us know the seriousness and the very importance of the person we are preparing to receive: “In the course of his preaching he said, ‘Someone is following me, someone who is more powerful than I am, and I am not fit to kneel down and undo the strap of his sandals. I have baptised you with water, but he will baptise you with the Holy Spirit.’” The precondition therefore to receive VIP Jesus is Repentance.
3. By His death: Though not indicated in our readings of today, from the story of John the Baptist we know that he paved the way for Christ’s coming by His death.
In effect the central message of today is that VIP Jesus is coming. The paths, the highways, the mountains and hills, the valleys that Isaiah talked about are all inside our hearts. John K. Aniagwu in his homily on the second Sunday of advent brings to our minds that the Mountains and hills in our hearts are our PRIDE while the valleys are our LACK OF LOVE. On this note, we must bring down our pride and fill out the valleys of our lives with an active love of God and Neighbour. Only then can we welcome VIP Jesus on His arrival.
Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh, cmf

Fr. Jude's Homilies

1B Advent – Fr. Jude’s Homily

Homily for the First Sunday of Advent Year B
Happy New Year to you all! It is not the 1st of January! It is worth mentioning that we are turning the page today into a New Liturgical Year of the Church: Year B. This begins with the Season of Advent: A time of Preparation extending over four Sundays before Christmas. The word ADVENT comes from the latin ad venio “to come to” and adventus, “coming” or “arrival”. We are anticipating the Adventus Domini, the “coming of the Lord”.
The Advent season is filled with preparation and expectation and the getting ready for Christmas. It is a season of waiting and longing, of conversion and home, meditating on the incredible love and humanity of our God in taking on flesh of the Virgin Mary. We will read most often during this season the prophesies of Isaiah. The readings will be focused on key figures of the Old and the New Testament who were prepared and chosen by God to make the incarnation possible.
This decorum of preparation is planted in the readings of today. Isaiah expresses our intense desire as we wait for the Lord. “O that you would tear the heavens open and come down”. (Is 64:1). The Son of Man will be coming to judge the living and the death. We do not know when he will come. The secret is known only to God. No one knows about that date, day and hour, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father (Mt 24:26).
Today’s Gospel taken from the end of Mark’s apocalyptic discourse in chapter 13 encourages us to adopt the attitude of staying “awake” and being on “guard”. This entails an attitude of perpetual vigilance and being constantly on the watch. Death is no respecter of men and it is always ready to take us at any time. On the radio and other news media we keep on hearing of Death Announcements. This means that we must be ready at all times to meet the lord at our death and also every day in our lives.
The second coming of Christ is eminent! After ascending into heaven, while the disciples were still gazing into the sky, they were told “O men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up into heaven? This Jesus who had been taken up into heaven will come in the same way (Acts 1:10-11).
The Church has given us this time to ready our hearts for our Lord, making sure that we do not lack any spiritual gift as we wait for the Revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor 1:7). We must ponder the words of Saint Charles Borromeo on Advent: “Each year, as the Church recalls this mystery, she urges us to renew the memory of the great love God has shown us. This holy season teaches us that Christ’s coming was not only for the benefit of his contemporaries, his power has still to be communicated to us all….The Church asks us to understand that Christ, who came once in Flesh, is prepared to come again. When we all remove all obstacles to his presence he will come, at any hour and moment, to dwell spiritually in our hearts, bringing with him the riches of his grace”.
MARANATHA! Come Lord Jesus into my Life!
Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh Basebang, cmf
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Fr. Jude's Homilies

Fr. Jude’s Homily for the Solemnity of Christ, the King of the Universe

Homily of the 26th of November 2017
Solemnity of Christ the King of the Universe

Today, we celebrate the Solemnity of Christ, the King of the Universe. Nowadays there are not many kings around. In many countries, we no longer speak of Monarchy but of Democracy. Nevertheless we in some of our traditional societies especially here in Cameroon, we still have chiefdoms and fondoms. A King, Chief, Fon, Queen, President or Leader is a symbol of unity and service. He has the task of Caring and seeing to the welfare of the people under his dominion.
The first reading likens the leader to a shepherd who cares for his sheep. This fits into the Kingship of Christ based on service. Christ is the King who will look after his flock himself and keep all of it in view. As a shepherd keeps all his flock in view when he stands up in the middle of his scattered sheep, so shall Christ will keep his sheep in view. He shall rescue them from wherever they have been scattered during the mist and darkness. At this backdrop, Jesus confidently attests “I am the Good Shepherd who lays down his life for his sheep (Jn 10:11).
Jesus turned down a tempting offer of Glory and Territory at the beginning of his ministry (Luke 4, 8-11). In so doing he turned down the seducing glories of the leaders of this world. He constantly bucked the pressures of the crowd. Once after feeding he crowd of over 5000 people they wanted to take Jesus by Force and make him king (Jn 6:15). Jesus turned it down. Jesus is not in any way denying his kingship! Jesus is King! He asserts it clearly in front of Pilate: “Yes, I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came to this world, to testify to the truth” (Jn 18:37). In today’s Gospel, Mathew depicts Jesus as a true Leader and King. Jesus had an undeniable power with which he calmed and quieted angry storms. He even walked on the lake. Despite this, he used his power compassionately for others. He fed the hungry, healed the sick, pardon sinners etc. Many countries and associations have been rendered miserable, hopeless, and have fallen from grace to grass because of corrupt leadership.
The Great Roman Empire despite its mighty army with sword, guns and canons have failed. The British Empire is today reduced to a small country. The Great French Empire under the Powerful Napoleon is today a thing of the Past. But the kingdom of Christ, founded on love and justice is still growing stronger.
Our shepherd King Jesus invites us to build up a Kingdom based on Justice, Love and peace! We must alleviate the distress f the suffering millions of the world! Our hearts must reach to those who are in great need for they are not far from us. Only in this way will our leadership be pertinent. The following words published in a parish bulletin and beautifully quoted by Vima Dasan in his book His Word lives can be our daily manna this week:
I was hungry and you formed a humanitarian club and discussed my hunger. I was imprisoned and you crept off quietly to your chapel and prayed for my release. I was naked and in your mind you debated the morality of my appearance. I was sic and you knelt and thanked God for your health. I was homeless and you preached to me of the spiritual shelter of the love of God. I was lonely and you left me alone to go and pray for me. You seem so holy, so close to God. But I am still very hungry and lonely and cold.”
Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh Basebang , cmf
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Fr. Jude's Homilies

Fr. Jude’s Homily for the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time A

Sunday November 19, 2017, 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A
Theme: Being faithful in small things

In His Parable of the Talents, Jesus teaches that we must use our gifts wisely. During Jesus’ time, a talent was an amount; thirty kilogrammes of precious metal, but in the Parable of the Talent in our Gospel today, when Jesus speaks of talents He is referring to God-given abilities to each of us. Since Jesus’ time people have come to understand the word “talent” in this sense.
Before going on a journey, a wealthy man entrusts his fortune to his servants for the time he would be away. Two of the servants use the money wisely to earn income for their master. However, the third servant does not put the money to good use to the master’s displeasure. The man who receives one talent buries it. Jesus calls him “wicked” and “lazy.”
The story becomes more interesting if we look at the reward or compliments given. Even though the first servant with five talents made five more and the second servant with two talents made two more, they both receive exactly the same compliments: “Well done, good and faithful servant; you have shown you can be faithful in small things. I will trust you with greater things. Come and join in your master’s happiness.” (Verses 21, 23)
The gifts we have received are not ours alone. God has given them to us to serve Him and others. Each of us has something to give. We can give our money and time to charity, be a friend to someone who is sick or lonely, do volunteer work, or be a peacemaker, teacher or minister. We may unselfishly give our time to our spouse, children or parents. We may choose a service-oriented occupation, or we may just do our everyday jobs with integrity and respect for others.
The master represents God in this parable and the servants represent us. The English word talent, which means our natural abilities, is derived from this parable. The parable’s lesson is that we must use our talents, abilities and wealth to serve God. If we do not use our gifts wisely, God will consider us to be wicked and lazy like the third man in the parable. He compared himself to others and was afraid to fail. So he did nothing. That was the problem. He instead buried his talent.
Whatever God has given you, thank Him and ask for His help to invest it as best you can. Mother Theresa said, “Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.” She did not talk about doing great things, but doing little things with great love. Today Jesus is asking you to do small things with great love.
Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh Basebang , cmf
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Fr. Jude's Homilies

Fr. Jude’s Homily for the 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A

Sunday, November 12, 2017, 32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A

Theme: Wisdom: Be ready to receive Christ when he comes
We must have once found ourselves in a situation where we suddenly lacked fuel for our cars or generators, for example. Even now, many cars and machines are designed with warning signs of imminent seizure.
However, people still run out of fuel. It may also be when we forget or neglect to pay our bills in/on time, or run out of airtime when making an important call. Some of these situations can be very embarrassing.
In today’s gospel, it is not fuel or airtime that is lacking but olive oil. Olive oil was the fuel burnt in lamps in Jesus’ day. At the beginning the five foolish virgins did not really “run out” of oil; they never had it at all.
The bridesmaids in the parable were given an opportunity to be ready for the wedding in the groom’s house later that evening. The groom had already sent word to the bride that the wedding would be later that day. They knew the wedding would take place. But five of them did not bring oil. They had an opportunity during the day to get a supply of oil but they did not bother. Those who were able to anticipate their Oil need are described as wise and those who could not are described as foolish.
The truth is that wisdom is actually very difficult to define. It is the first and highest gifts of the Holy Spirit. It makes the soul responsive to God in the contemplation of divine things. Where faith is a simple knowledge of the articles of Christian belief, wisdom goes on to a certain divine penetration of the truths themselves. Built into wisdom is the element of love, which inspires contemplative reflection on these divine mysteries, rejoices dwelling on them, and directs the mind to judge all things according to their principles. The first reading actually personifies wisdom and it is addressed as a woman who is ready to make herself available to anyone who earnestly goes in search of her.
Wisdom goes beyond mere intelligence. Wisdom is not brilliance; it goes beyond that. It involves a deep clarity of judgement that moves us to speak and act only after listening to God. The Parable of the Virgins make us understand that for a Christian Wisdom entails being ready to receive Christ any time He comes.
The Gospel’s response to the delay was to insist, nevertheless, that Jesus would return unannounced and unexpected, and to repeat the mantra, “Keep alert, stay awake, be ready!” A wise person, knowing the importance of Jesus in his /her life, will make efforts to be ready every time. Let us therefore pray for the gift of the Holy Spirit to help us understand the importance of Christ in our lives and be ready to receive Him when He comes.
Rev. Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh Basebang , cmf
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