Category Is: Legacy

While they were talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and terrified and thought that they were seeing a ghost. He said to them, “Why are you frightened, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? Look at my hands and my feet; see that it is I myself. Touch me and see, for a ghost does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet. Yet for all their joy they were still disbelieving and wondering, and he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate in their presence.

Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things.

Scripture Reading
Luke 24:36-48 (NRSV)

Our gospel reading is from Luke, and since ako ang preacher for today, of course we will talk about context, we have learned na yung mga gospel are not really written by who they are named after, that they are only associated with them, pero as I research about the gospel of Luke, medyo iba yung cheka, kasi malakas yung association nya kay Saint Luke na isang greek at gentile, na nagmula sa Antioch, Syria, kung saan din di umano naisulat ang gospel around 63-70 CE, isa din sya dun sa 3 synoptic gospel (Mark and Matthew) where much of the gospel is derived from the Gospel of Mark, and just the same it talkes about the life and death of Jesus Christ, pero ang unique nga kay gospel of Luke is yung part ng infancy or birth of Jesus, yung pa census ni Caesar, pati yung circumcision ni Jesus and yung pakikipag chekahan ni Jesus at the age of 12 sa mga elders dun sa temple about the law. at sequel din nya yung Acts of the apostles, dahil sabi, Si Luke the evangelist ay isang close associate din ni St. Paul the Apostle.

As I go through what I wanted to talk about my preaching today, and as I reflect about my life, there’s are a few things that came into my mind, and one of them is Legacy, sa ating binasang gospel, ito yung moment na parang sinasabi ni Jesus, this is it guys, I feel nyo na, in flesh and blood, Kasi last na to, this is the last time na mararamdaman at mahahawakan ninyo ako so seize the moment, this is also the time na parang gusto na nyang mag iwan ng kanyang “legacy” sa sangkatauhan, at yun ay ang gift of the holy spirit. very much like when we are about to lose a loved one, yung moment sa hospital bed, at hawak mo yung kamay ng mahal mo sa buhay na alam mong any minute, or any second ay hindi mo na makakasama habang buhay, na kung pwede lang i freeze yung moment na yun ay ginawa mo na, and somehow, with the help of technology, we we’re able to capture that moment, yung pipicturan mong hawak mo yung kamay ng mahal mo sa buhay, at ipopost ng black and white sa FB, para manlang kahit papaano ay mabalikan mo yung huling sandali na nakasama mo sila. Nothing can ever really prepare you when it comes to losing someone. In my personal life, having lost my Dad at a very young age and then my brother just a few years after, death seems to be very close, that I know I had to somehow prepare myself for another one, particularly my grandmother. So I had to mentally prepare myself by making sure that I seize every moment I had with her knowing that she won’t be here for long, it was also interesting to note how these deaths occured during the commemoration of the birth, and rebirth of Christ, we lost our dad around 1 am during Christmas of 2004, my brother during black Saturday in 2007, and on April 7, 2020 we lost Inang, that was also during holy week, and the same date as my brothers. We had an internal joke sa family na ay, alam na namin kung sino sumundo sayo Inang, referring to my brother, who lived with her in the province until he passed.

Back to the gospel muna, so Jesus, knowing na nga the tendency of his disciples, perhaps he might be shaking his head, edi wow! hindi parin sila convinced, na hindi nga ako multo, sige, pahawak ko sa kanila yung mga kamay at paa ko, ay wiz parin, sige nga try ko makikain kasama nila, baka with that ay ma convince na sila na ay oo nga, He is Risen, He is here with us.

As we say, the bible is a library of books, with various forms of literature, songs, poems, stories, parables etc. At sa storyang ito, If I am to describe yung main character that is Jesus Christ, sobra nyang “matalinghaga” parang tata lino levels, or yung parang mga ermitanyo sa movies na susubukin ka, alam nya na as human beings talagang most likely mag fe fail parin yung mga tao, pero binigyan parin nya ng chance. Parang yung favorite mong teacher na hindi isu-spoon feed sayo yung sagot, rather icha-challenge ka pa until ma figure out mo yung answer on your own, para sayo yung credit at hindi sa kanya. And yung character din ni Jesus dito sa binasa natin is parang meron din syang super powers no, na parang with the snap of his fingers, he made teem understand the scripture, just like yung story about the road to Emmaus, yung may nakasalubong syang dalawa sa kanyang followers, na hindi rin sya nakilala, until again, with a snap of his fingers, na recognize sya aventually, or maybe, it’s their own doubts thats clouding their judgement.

Isa pa sa mga thoughts na nangibabaw as I read through the text is about “Ghosting”, I have been told by someone really special to me that I have a gift of reaching out to people, and I’d like to believe that to be true, kaya sobrang benta saking yung character development eksena na yan, lahat naman tayo, deserve na mabigyan ng chance to for a character development , na cheka ko na to sa ilang untuck moments with the nakshies, I am the kind of person na if may something off about someone, I tend to be on the side of knowing that person more, in order to understand where it’s coming from, kaya na rin talagang hirap arukin ng isip ko ang Ghosting, I have experienced being ghosted,and I would never understand why, I was able to convince myself that it’s not me, it’s them, so bakit nga ba ghosting, kasi, again, the historical Jesus, did not ghost humankind. Ayun lang.

So going back to Legacy, it makes me reflect on what I can leave my family and the community when it’s my time. If you ask my younger version about Legacy, I will probably talk about material things, literal na pamana, or in my case, as someone who was a breadwinner, something to leave my family for them to have a kickstart in life without me.

But If you ask me now, and as I reflect on the gospel and being a queer Christian and a minister of Open Table MCC for the past 8 years, and having experienced death in my personal life and here sa ating church community. Here is what I thought, ang selfcentered pala to hope na sana pag wala na ako ay naaalala parin ako ng mga tao, na sana may naiwan akong something, or somehow na touch ko ang lives nila enough to still remember me, in a way, may point naman, I will never get tired of saying this, PEOPLE WILL FORGET EVERYTHING YOU DID FOR THEM, BUT NOT HOW YOU MADE THEM FEEL, at applicable to sa aspeto ng pagiging magulang, anak, teacher, student, advocate, and of course as an “acclang simbahan” pwede mong gawin ang lahat para sa mga taong mahal mo at makakalimutan ka parin nila, pero kailanman, hindi nila makakalimutan kung paano mo naiparamdam sa kanila ang isang bagay, kaya choice mo na yung pangit ba yung feeling na yun or maganda.

As I think about legacy, it made me realize na hindi nga importante na ma alala ka nila, sabi nga diba, kaya may araw ng mga patay, yun yung moment para alalahanin mo sila, ang pinka importante sa lahat is yung sa abot ng aking makakaya, ay makipamuhay ako sa bawat isa, share happy, sad, victorious, and even lowest moment of our loved ones lives.

Nothing can ever really prepare us for death, but what’s important is to always live for the moment, yesterday is herstory, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift, that’s why it’s called present, so life is special.

Tayo na’t mabuhay sa kasalukuyan, because when we live in the present, we get to have awareness, we get to take action, as little as it may be, makisangkot tayo, kahit paminsan minsan lang, para hindi parang hangin, na tayo’s napadaan lang (Ricky Lee) National Artist for Film and Broadcast Arts.

At dahil nandito narin nga tayo sa topic, what is it that I want to be remembered by: I would like to be remembered as someone who was a beacon and advocate of taking up space, as a queer christian, and how do we take up space? by simply living, existing, as our true authentic selves, be it to shaken the belief of the conservatives or remind them that they don’t have the monopoly of the bible and faith, that we queer christians exist and we are here to stay, or maybe to inspire another queer kid that there’s nothing wrong with your sexuality and it’s never in conflict with your spirituality. Isa kang accla, kristyano, at hindi kailanman ikaka offend ni Jesus kung mag falseto ka at mag cartwheel through praise and worship dahil at the end of your days, ang mahalaga ay kung paano mo tinuring ang iyong kapya, kagaya nalang ng pagtuturing mo sa Dakilang may likha.

And so to close this, as I continue to struggle through what would be my legacy, I realized na parang somehow, yung sinabi ko about how I understood na hindi na importante saakin na maalala nyo ako, pag wala na ko, ay taliwas dun sa mga tinuran ni Jesus, because yung sa kanya na during communion nga diba, whenever you share these amoung yourselves, do this in remembrance of me! Oh well! Hindi naman ako si Jesus, but then again, as christians at followers of Jesus Christ, it has been a challenge to keep up to Jesus, na in this day and age, it’s a challenge na makipamuhay sa mga taong itinakwil ng lipunan, sa mga mahihirap, sa mga oppressed, parang naging mas madaling piliin parin yung magnanakaw, na sumang ayon nalang sa kagustuhan ng emperyo, na wag nang makisangkot, at makialam, kahit pa minsan lang, parang mas madali nang pumikit muli, pagkatapos mong mamulat, ang manahimik , magbulag bulagan, bingi bingihan habang lowkey ay inaassert na ng Tsina ang kanilang kapangyarihan, ang mag maang maangan, tila mas madaling suportahan ang isang apponted son of God na registered sex offender at wanted sa ibang bansa, kaya ibaling nalang natin ang sisi dun sa drag artist na nag ala Jesus Christ, kasi nakaka offend! Hindi lahat ng tama ay madali, at hindi lahat ng madali ay tama.

The true legacy of Jesus is precisely this, that the marginalized of his time remembered how he made them feel- not just welcomed but accepted, included, and loved. He did not just heal them physically, he made them whole socially, emotionally, spiritually, and even religiously.

The second legacy of Jesus is not just what he did for people but he empowered them to carry on the work of healing, inclusion, justice, and love.

Kaya okay lang na makalimutan tayo. Ikaw. Ako. Kung yung ginawa nating kabutihan at pakikibaka ay ipinagpatuloy ng iba at ng new generation. Anong kwenta ng legacy at alaala natin kung namatay kasama natin ang ating adbokasiya at ministry?

Again, the category is “Legacy.” Sabi nga ni Erin Benzaiken na isang florist, gardener at author: “The ripples you create are innumerable and unknowable, make sure they are good ones, that is legacy.”

And I thank you!

Open Table MCC is a church for all, including LGBT+ people. All are welcome! Sign up for our newsletter to receive the latest news and events from our church community.

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