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The Church was in a rough place. Jesus had indeed risen from the dead, but the leaders of this new Church were still pretty frightened. They hid in a room afraid because their life was at risk. Jesus had been killed, and so too might they. But then came the Holy Spirit. Everything was different because the Holy Spirit always wins. Continue reading The Holy Spirit Wins: Homily for Sunday, May 28, 2023 at The Friar.
Get ready. The Holy Spirit is coming. The fullness of God is being revealed. And for the sake of our own salvation, and that of others, the Holy Spirit sends us forward to proclaim the Good News. Sharing our faith is no longer one option among many. Continue reading God gives us our role: Homily for Thursday, May 25, 2023 at The Friar.
One phrase Saint Dominic is known for, was when as he was near death, he reassured the friars that he would be more helpful to them in his death than he would be in this world. Death can be frightening, scary, anxiety producing. But when we cling to Jesus, it is our pathway to life.  Continue reading More helpful in death: Homily for Wednesday, May 24, 2023 at The Friar.
"I did not shrink from proclaiming to you the entire plan of God." This is the season for graduation speeches. And in the midst of them, they usually call people to aspire to something better for their future. For Saint Paul, his "graduation speech" is about the ways in which he fulfilled his vocation.  Continue reading I did not shrink: Homily for Tuesday, May 23, 2023 at The Friar.
Why didn't Jesus just stay here on earth? Wouldn't it be easier for us if we could consult Jesus in the flesh here on earth? Just why do we celebrate the Ascension? If we were only made for this earth, then Jesus' remaining here on earth would make sense. But given that we are made for much more, it is right that he shows us the way to glory. Continue reading Why the Ascension Matters: Homily for Sunday, May 21, 2023 at The Friar.
Today and tomorrow's first readings are interesting to me because it appears that Saint Paul has every possible situation occur. Tomorrow he has a direct message from God. Today he is facing hostility. He receives hospitality. Tomorrow he is in court. But through it all Saint Paul simply needs to remember that he is always in the holy presence of God. Continue reading You are always in the holy presence of God: Homily for Thursday, May 18, 2023 at The Friar.
Major Events can be a cause for change and conversion in our lives. A bad heart diagnosis and we change our diet and start exercising. A natural disaster can strike and people become religious. It can be the case that these type of events cause us to see the world in a completely different way. Continue reading Major Events: Homily for Tuesday, May 16, 2023 at The Friar.
This second reading is, I think, one of the most beautiful sections of the letters of Saint Peter. It is perhaps also one of the most challenging, for it stresses internal conversion as the way we become more open to the Christ who can sanctify our lives. Continue reading Sanctify Christ as the Lord of Your Heart: Homily for Sunday, May 14, 2023 at The Friar.
This is the season for graduation addresses. Today, in three little words, Jesus gives the theme of his graduation address. Love one another. We can sometimes make the spiritual life more complicated than it needs to be. There are two rules. Love God. Love Neighbor as yourself. Every aspect of the spiritual life is ordered to these two rules.  Continue reading Three Little Words: Homily for Baccalaureate Mass at CBC Friday, May 12, 2023 at The Friar.
The readings today, at first glance, can seem to suggest two opposing ideas. In the first reading, Paul and Barnabas face terrible persecution, being left for dead. Jesus tells us his gift for us is peace. Fortunately for us, Jesus, as always, brings these ideas together. He is the way that both can lead us to Him. Continue reading Peace or persecution? How about both? Homily for Tuesday, May 9, 2023 at The Friar.
But I am often troubled. What do I do? The hope comes from the first reading, where the early Church encounters a problem and innovates. It tells me that in distress I need the community of the Church and the power of the Lord Jesus. Continue reading Do not let your hearts be troubled. Homily for Sunday, May 7, 2023 at The Friar.
In today's world, we usually think first of leaders who have power. But in today's gospel, where Jesus has just finished washing the feet of the disciples, Jesus sets forth a different model for leaders. He makes it clear: to lead is to serve. Continue reading To Lead is to Serve: Homily for Thursday, May 4, 2023 at The Friar.
We can make the mistake in thinking that once the Holy Spirit descended upon the Apostles, all conflicts in the Church were immediately worked out. That was, of course, true for the Trinity, but it did take a little time for the Church to discern some things. That Jesus was the divine Son of God was one of these areas. Thanks be to God for the tireless and courageous witness of Saint Athanasius the saint we celebrate today, who at great risk to himself defended this truth. Continue reading Jesus is the Son of God: Homily for Tuesday, May 2, 2023 at The Friar.
Every little kid at one point has probably heard the question, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" This is also a fair question in the spiritual life, too. In order to find the answer, we need to hear the voice of God. Continue reading Do you hear the voice of the shepherd: Homily for Sunday, April 30, 2023 at The Friar.
Many may know that the world enthusiasm is formed by the Greek words for "in God" (en theos) but the full meaning comes from enthousiastikos, which could be translated as be "possessed or inspired by a god". That seems to fit with the Ethiopian eunuch's experience of God. Continue reading Enthusiasm for God: Homily for Thursday, April 27, 2023 at The Friar.
Tear down or build up? What to do? Today's first reading poses examples of two types of actions, that most often seem to be the opposites of each other. The apostle Paul is seeking to destroy the Church. The apostles are seeking to cooperate with God's grace to create a community of believers. Destroying or creating are actions that find their foundation either in relationships, or, in the case of destroying, in the breaking of relationship. Which do you want God to help you with? Continue reading To Tear Down or to Build Up: Homily for Wednesday, April 26, 2023 at The Friar.
There are sixteen chapters in the gospel of Mark. The word immediately (eutheōs in Greek) appears 35 times, an average of more than twice in each chapter. Why does Mark use this word so often? Because when it comes to sharing the faith, it is all about urgency. Continue reading The Urgency of Sharing our Faith: Homily for Tuesday, April 25, 2023 at The Friar.
We probably have all had those moments where our hopes are dashed. We have been betrayed. We have lost someone we love. We have lost a job, had a broken relationship. And in our grief and brokenness, we need to remember that Jesus walks right beside us reminding us of his love for us. Continue reading Jesus meets you where you are: Meet him where he is: Homily for Sunday, April 23, 2023 at The Friar.
The response to the psalm today reminds us that "The Lord Hears the Cry of the Poor." Sometimes when things are not going so well, we can feel that no one is listening. We can find that God is silent. It can appear that he doesn't care. It can seem that he is so distant, so far away. But in the gospel of John, and in the first reading, we learn that God is closer than we realize. That sometimes, because we sin, we cannot see clearly enough to see God. But God sees us, finds us and saves us, and that indeed is good news. Continue reading The Lord Hears the Cry of the Poor: Homily for Thursday, April 20, 2023 at The Friar.
Today is the continuation of the conversation between Jesus and Nicodemus. As was the case yesterday, Nicodemus is trying to make sense of Jesus using what he knows and sees. He is acting from the world of the senses, and from that understands his faith. Jesus is describing a new reality of the Holy Spirit, which cannot be understood only by using reason. It is an interesting clashing of worlds. Continue reading War of the Worlds: Homily for Tuesday, April 18, 2023 at The Friar.
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