Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Jesus turns his face towards Jerusalem despite his awareness of the implications of rejection. And that is what happens when he sends messengers ahead to make arrangements in a Samaritan village. James and John are angry but Jesus rebukes them and makes alternative arrangements. He remains free. He remains himself. Then come the call stories and the echoes of Elisha. What happens to us when things do not go according to plan? What happens when people let us down? Do we make easy excuses when we are invited to offer a helping hand or some useful service? Are we ready to go to Jerusalem with Jesus? Or are we like James and John, full of fire and brimstone and quick anger? Are we like the people Jesus called to follow him, swift with our excuses? Or do we hear God’s voice, put our hand to the plough and respond in love?

Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Ministry is a natural and necessary expression of the faith of the people of God. Our service to others has a Divine head namely Christ and a feet of clay which represent our contribution. Ministry is an effort between divine and human energies where God never fails and human hands and hearts which sometimes falter.  ~ Fr. Matt

                                                                     

 

The Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

Lining up or standing in a queue is part of our life. We stand in gas lines, grocery lines, the emergency room line, the welfare line. During the great depression people waited in bread lines in order to live.  We carry the Body and Blood of Christ, true food, true nourishment. Let us offer to one another the bread of our time, talent, and treasure.      ~ Fr. Matt                               

                                                          

 

 

 

Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

The Mass makes present the once-and-for-all sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. Therefore, to enter into the spirit of the Mass, we must “proclaim the death of the Lord” (1 Cor 11:26) and offer our bodies to the Lord as living sacrifices (Rm 12:1). The spirit of the Mass is the spirit of sacrifice. Thus it is important to fast before Mass, deny ourselves, and take up our crosses each day (Lk 9:23) with the intention of uniting ourselves to Jesus crucified (see Gal 2:19) and sacrificed (see Heb 9:26). Through our “good deeds and generosity” (Heb 13:16), we make sacrifices pleasing to the Lord. We can unite these sacrifices with Jesus’ sacrifice on Calvary and fill up in our own bodies what is lacking in the “sufferings of Christ” (Col 1:24).

The Holy Mass is not the proclamation and perpetuation of our sacrifices but rather of His sacrifice. However, the Mass is the participation of our sacrifices in His. Live the Mass. Live a life of sacrifice. Through Jesus, “let us continually offer God a sacrifice of praise” (Heb 13:15).

The Most Holy Trinity

Where is the word Trinity in the Bible? You won’t find it! The Trinity is a mystery revealed by God and handed on to us through Sacred Tradition (see Catechism of the Catholic Church, 78, 234).

Jesus provides trinitarian clues in the Bible. “If you love Me and obey the commands I give you, I will ask the Father and He will give you another Paraclete — to be with you always: the Spirit of truth, Whom the world cannot accept, since it neither sees Him nor recognizes Him; but you can recognize Him, because He remains with you and will be within you” (Jn 14:15-17).

God is one essence in three Persons. The greatest minds in the history of the Church have wrestled with understanding the Trinity. We’ll never be able to fully grasp this divine truth. But as beloved children of the Father (1 Jn 3:2), our starting point is trust. Let the Lord speak to your heart; focus on the relationships. God is eternal community. Love best illuminates the nature of the Trinity (see 1 Jn 4:8, 16).

God the Father chose us (Eph 1:4). Jesus, our older Brother, leads us (Heb 2:10-11). The Holy Spirit resides within us (1 Cor 6:19). Grow strong through prayer in the Holy Spirit, persevere in God’s love, and welcome the mercy of Jesus (see Jude 20-21). Immerse yourself in the Trinitarian love of God.

The Most Holy Trinity

The way we express the Holy Trinity is in our relationship with God and the way God relates to us. In as much as the church stays true to the teachings of Jesus Christ it will be an authentic means through which the world identifies the triune God. If we obscure the life giving truth then it is a hollow shell and useless to the world.     ~ Fr. Matt

                                                            

 

Pentecost Sunday

We ask the Spirit of God to inspire and enlighten us. May the Holy Spirit challenge and chasten us. Spirit of God empower and humble us. Illuminate us so that we may share your light with others.         ~ Fr. Matt                                                                                                                

 

Pentecost Sunday

Today’s Gospel relates how the Risen Jesus gave his apostles a foretaste of Pentecost on the evening of Easter Sunday by appearing to them and sending them to carry on the mission given him by his Heavenly Father.  He then empowered them to do so by breathing upon them and saying, “Receive the Holy Spirit.”  On the day of Pentecost, Jesus fulfilled his promise to send the Advocate or Paraclete. The gift of the Spirit would enable them to fulfill Jesus’ commission to preach the Gospel to all nations.  Today’s Gospel passage also tells us how Jesus gave to the Apostles the power and authority to forgive sins.  “Receive the Holy Spirit.  For those whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven; for those whose sins you retain, they are retained.”  These wonderful words, which bind together inseparably the presence of the Holy Spirit with the gift of forgiveness, are referred to directly in the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  But they have a much wider meaning.  Those words remind us of the Christian vocation we all have, to love and forgive as we have been loved and forgiven in the world of today, which is often fiercely judgmental and vengeful.

Seventh Sunday of Easter

Jesus tried to tell us we had power to overcome all demons and to cure diseases (Lk 9:1). He told us we could “cure the sick, raise the dead, heal the leprous, expel demons” (Mt 10:8). He even promised we would do greater by far than He ever did, if we only believed in Him (Jn 14:12).

However, Jesus saved the best till last. Before His Ascension, the risen Jesus, with nail-scarred hands and a hole in His side, was speaking to the apostles concerning the signs that would accompany those who had professed their faith (Mk 16:17). Jesus mentioned five signs: expelling demons, speaking new languages, handling serpents, drinking poison without suffering harm, and healing the sick (Mk 16:17-18). “No sooner had He said this than He was lifted up before their eyes in a cloud which took Him from their sight” (Acts 1:9). Jesus ascended “into heaven and took His seat at God’s right hand” (Mk 16:19).

When a Man has split the clouds and left planet earth behind, He’s certainly proven Himself to be an expert on signs. When Jesus says to us: “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes down on you” (Acts 1:8), He knows what He’s talking about.

Seventh Sunday of Easter

Is it enough to seek mercy, acknowledging past indiscretions to be in union with God ?  We need a change of heart and will which will translate into daily continuous action. Hope for our world cannot be imposed by external means, but by being born and cultivated deep in our hearts.         ~ Fr. Matt