George Orwell’s 1984 dictum “Big Brother is watching you” has now become a reality. I remember when my younger brother, twin brother, and myself went to visit Singapore. It is one of the cleanest and modern cities I have visited. One person in the subway train commented, “Here no one steals, someone sees you here!” My eyes opened wide and said: “How it is possible?” “Well, there’s a CCTV everywhere!” he commented.

Everyone is One

With the advanced technology we have nowadays, everybody is a witness! You could map the topography and physical location of your place in online maps, the GPS revealing your whereabouts, with drones hovering above. Each smartphone has a built-in camera. Everyone has become a photographer, moviemaker, or journalist. And yes, everybody is a witness.

If, in the Jewish tradition, there is a need for two witnesses for a testimony to be valid, in our time the evidence would be overwhelming. But not all testimonies are equal—there are always some that weigh more than the others. Yet, even in our present situation, there are still times when the most obvious testimonies and strongest evidence fail before the judgment of prejudiced people.

Our Gospel passage continues Jesus’ words about His relationship with the Father, which defends His action of healing on the Sabbath at the beginning of the chapter. Today’s verses bring further defense to His words and action. As in court, there is a need for witnesses. What would assure the audience that Jesus’ words and actions are valid? Who or what could be acceptable witnesses? Jesus presents possible witnesses that testified to Him—John the Baptist, the works of Jesus Himself, and the Word of the Father.

John the Baptist

Jesus makes use of John the Baptist—the one who never thought much of himself and only led people to God. John lived with integrity and credibility that shocked and scandalized the people. This is the kind of real witnessing that Jesus calls us to. It challenges us to follow Him in a radical way.

The Gospel today makes us reflect on the kind of witnessing we give to the world. Yes, words are important, but if our words are not seen in the lives that we live, they mean nothing.

“Walk the talk,” people say. Can we become authentic witnesses of faith by living credibly today?

May the witness of my life praise You, Jesus. May it lead more people closer to You. Amen.


If you fail to give witness to your faith, do you acknowledge your failure and start again with a new and better life?

[Readings: Ex 32:7-14; Jn 5:31-47]

Fr. Archie Tacay

I'm Padre Archie Macaroncio Tacay, CICM. I was born on April 19 and was raised in the Philippines. I entered the seminary formation of the Missionhurst-Missionaries or CICM Missionaries in 1995 and professed my religious vows in 2001. After completing my Theological studies at Maryhill School of Theology, I was sent to the US to continue my internship formation. While here in the US, I went to Oblate School of Theology, learned the Spanish language in Cuernavaca, Mexico and later on trained as a chaplain in MD Anderson Houston, Texas. Most of my assignments were in Texas, particularly in the Diocese of Brownsville and Archdiocese of San Antonio. I was ordained as a priest on May 20, 2008. My current assignment has me in Wendell, North Carolina, as Pastor of St. Eugene Church. I love outdoor sports! e.g. cycling, tennis. I also love to read books, play guitar and do nature trekking.

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