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June 11, 2008

St. Barnabas/ Lourdes Commemoration

1. Today is the 11th of the month and we remember Mary of Lourdes.

In one of our practices for the Song of Bernadette the Musical, I decided to read more on the life of St.
Bernadette. And there was an episode in her life where in Fr. Peyramale, the pastor of Lourdes
continue to be having doubts on the credibility of the vision that Bernadette saw. And so, just like any
of us who maybe from time to time lacks faith or trying to prove something, he ask God for a sign in
order to start believing.

Fr. Peyramale, in one of his regular masses, particularly during communion time he was disturbed by a
bright light enveloping over a certain person in the congregation. Since his attention was directed to it,
he followed that person moving about in his pew and was so surprised that it was Bernadette, glowing
in pure light just like what she described to Fr. Peyramale when she reported about the Lady. And
indeed, Fr. Peyramale started to believe.

2. St. Bernadette will never be known if not through the apparition of Mary. Thats why when
ever we talk of Our Lady of Lourdes, Bernadette is always part of it.

3. Likewise, the history of the early Christian Church will never be complete without mentioning the
name of St. Barnabas. He is mentioned fairly often in the Acts of the Apostles and in several of Paul's
letters. He is honored with the title apostle.

4. Barnabas was born in Cyprus. His given name was Joseph but the apostles gave him the Hebrew
name Barnabas, which means "Son of Encouragement," in honor of his work in the church.
Some of the great contributions of Barnabas are the following:

- He was the one who persuaded the apostles and the church in Jerusalem that Paul had been converted
from a persecutor to an apostle. (Acts 9:26-27)
- Barnabas was one of the first to understand that the mission of the church was universal.
- He argued forcefully that Gentile converts did not have to be circumcised or follow the Jewish dietary
customs. (Acts 15)
- The apostles sent him to strengthen the Christians in Antioch. He invited Paul to join him in this
work. (Acts 11) The Antioch community sent Barnabas and Paul on a missionary journey together.
They preached in synagogues throughout Asia Minor. When the community wanted to send them on a
second journey, Paul and Barnabas found that they could no longer work together. Their
disagreement was over a person, Mark, who had deserted them in the middle of their first journey.

Barnabas wanted to give him another chance, but Paul didn't. So, Barnabas and Mark set off for
Cyprus, while Paul and Silas went in a different direction.

5. And for sure, Barnabas, Paul, Mark and Silas have heard the gospel of today which was written by
Matthew- an encouragement by Jesus as they go through their mission work thats why they can
easily transfer from one place to another because they have no attachments from people or things.

6. May our lady of Lourdes, St. Bernadette and Barnabas help us that the only attachment we are
allowed in life is our attachment to God, the rest are simply instrumental to motivate us in life.