Sixth Day in the Octave of Christmas

Today’s readings What did you get for Christmas?  Was it everything you’d hoped for?  Or are you at that stage of life where gifts are nice, but you really don’t need anything special?  A lot of my family has come to that point, except, of course, for my nieces and nephew.  But it’s hard to… Continue reading Sixth Day in the Octave of Christmas

The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph

Today’s readings It’s certainly appropriate that we celebrate the Holy Family today, just a few days after Christmas.  This feast helps to underscore that Jesus came to live among us in a very ordinary way: by taking flesh and becoming one of us, even to being part of a family.  So we look on the… Continue reading The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph

St. John, Apostle and Evangelist

Today’s readings “He saw and believed.” The “other” disciple, often called the “beloved” disciple or the disciple “whom Jesus loved,” is St. John the Apostle and Evangelist, the one we celebrate today. St. John had a very special relationship with Christ. He wasn’t as zealous and boisterous as Peter could be, but he had a… Continue reading St. John, Apostle and Evangelist

The Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ

You know, on paper, what we celebrate today is all clean and neat, and as the centuries have washed the story, it’s easy for us to swallow.  I think about Linus famously proclaiming the Christmas story in the well-loved Charlie Brown Christmas cartoon, and it all seems so harmless.  But we must never forget that… Continue reading The Nativity of our Lord Jesus Christ

Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Advent: O Emmanuel

Today’s readings “Lift up your heads and see; your redemption is near at hand.”  So says the psalmist today and all indications are that that psalmist is absolutely right!  Even the last-minute shoppers are starting to panic, there’s only one door left on the Advent calendar, and our Advent wreath is fully ablaze with all… Continue reading Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Advent: O Emmanuel

Friday of the Third Week of Advent

Today’s readings [Today’s homily was for the school children on their last day of school before Christmas break.  UPDATE: Unfortunately, I didn’t get to celebrate Mass with them because they had a snow day.  Rats.] I can’t believe it but Christmas is only just six days away now!  I know everyone is so busy writing… Continue reading Friday of the Third Week of Advent

Thursday of the Third Week of Advent: O Adonai

Today’s readings “Come, let us worship the Lord, for he is already close at hand.” Each day from the seventeenth through the twenty-third of December, a verse is assigned to each day that we call the “O Antiphons.”  We hear the “O Antiphons” is the hymn “O Come, O Come Emmanuel.”  Today’s verse is “O… Continue reading Thursday of the Third Week of Advent: O Adonai

Advent Penance Service

Readings: Isaiah 61:1-3, Matthew 9:1-8 This afternoon I was thinking about the fact that people don’t experience things in the same way.  I was in downtown Naperville with my sister, my two nieces and my nephew.  We were out having lunch and doing some Christmas shopping just as the weather was getting pretty nasty.  My… Continue reading Advent Penance Service

Tuesday of the Third Week of Advent

Today’s readings The chief priests and the elders of the people were always trying to decide who got into heaven. The criteria was strict adherence to the law, and any flaw in one’s obedience left them out of the picture. The problem was, they weren’t so concerned about the spirit of the law, and that… Continue reading Tuesday of the Third Week of Advent

Fourth Sunday of Advent: O Oriens

Today’s readings I was with some friends the other night and we watched the Patrick Stewart version of “A Christmas Carol.”  When I watched it this time, I was really struck by the themes of light and darkness that Charles Dickens wrote into the story.  At the beginning, the setting is a very dark London,… Continue reading Fourth Sunday of Advent: O Oriens