No Fear

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The WORD in other words (2022) b Fr Felmar Castrodes Fiel SVD – DYRF Cebu City

Saturday 2nd Week of Easter

Photo: Cathedral of Mar del Plata, Argentina

This Bible diary, The Word in Other Words, published every year, is almost twenty-years-old. In every edition, readings are assigned to volunteer writers, and the deadline is set shortly before the first Sunday of Advent. Then the whole publication team has to work on the materials for more or less eight to ten months to have the copy ready for sales and distribution.

But for this 2022 edition, the reflections were submitted already in November 2020. I point this out because 2020 is an unforgettable year for the whole world because of the covid pandemic. On top of this, the Philippines was also visited by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and typhoons, not counting the loss of jobs and loss of lives. It is genuinely a turbulent, roller-coaster year. In fact, as of this writing, there is no covid vaccine yet.

Our Gospel story is very relatable. Even the most seasoned fishermen were of no match to the raging storms. In the same way, fear and panic loomed over the most seasoned doctors on the spread of covid-19. Although we might feel helpless and forsaken, our Gospel is a source of comfort.

Storms and trials of all kinds may overwhelm us and can sometimes even tempt us to be afraid of our lives and of what lies ahead. We sometimes even think that God might have forgotten us or punished us. This feeling of going through some kind of storm is indeed a terrible experience. In the Gospel, Jesus reminds his disciples, “It is I. Do not be afraid.” When feelings of fear and isolation consume us, let usremember that God is with us. We shall never be forsaken.

We also have to claim that we have a bigger God over our big problems. Life’s storms may be so huge, they could crush our spirits, but if we also remain with our eyes fixed on Jesus, then we will reach our destination safely as realized by the disciples in today’s Gospel .

I submitted this reflection on November 30, 2020, to be exact. Readers of The Word in Other Words will read this by 2022. By the time you, our dear readers, will read this, you surely have just braved so many storms already since 2020 – far more than you ever imagined. Did God abandon you through your storms? No. Did God remove your personal trials? No. He just gave you the strength to endure the difficult ones.

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