Friday of the Twenty-fourth Week of Ordinary Time

Today’s readings Today’s readings are a kind of blueprint for the life of the disciple.  We see that those who surrounded Jesus as his core group were but a few selected people.  We have the Twelve, of course, but also some women.  Common to all of them is that nowadays we would probably not see… Continue reading Friday of the Twenty-fourth Week of Ordinary Time

The Exaltation of the Holy Cross

Cross Twilight Silhouettes Dusk Grass Sunset

Today’s readings In a lot of ways, this is a strange feast we are celebrating today. Think about it. This is the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, which in Jesus’ day would have been as big an oxymoron as one could possibly imagine. No cross would ever have been thought exalted in that day.  That’s… Continue reading The Exaltation of the Holy Cross

The Twenty-fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time

Today’s readings I think, as a pastor, the issue I wrestle with most is the suffering that is out there.  People come to me in their suffering, and that is a great privilege, a holy space.  The father in me wants to be able to say a quick prayer and take all the suffering away,… Continue reading The Twenty-fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time

Labor Day

Today’s readings: Genesis 1:26-2:3 | Psalm 90 | 1 Thessalonians 4:1b-2, 9-12 | Matthew 6:31-34 One of the things that I remember vividly about my childhood is how hard my parents worked. My Dad worked more than one job at a time for several years. And in his main job, he was with the company… Continue reading Labor Day

The Twenty-third Sunday of Ordinary Time

Today’s readings Jesus’ ministry on earth was all about healing.  Indeed, that’s what he came to do: to heal us, set things right, from the inside out, so that we would be able to enter the Kingdom.  In today’s gospel, he heals a man who has been deaf and mute with the word of command: “Ephphatha!” –… Continue reading The Twenty-third Sunday of Ordinary Time

The Twenty-second Sunday of Ordinary Time

Today’s readings So often, when someone thanks us for something, we might say, “It’s the least I could do.”  As if it were some kind of badge of achievement to do the least thing possible.  I think it’s human nature to try to do as little as possible, without being perceived as lazy or something. … Continue reading The Twenty-second Sunday of Ordinary Time

Thursday of the Twenty-first Week of Ordinary Time

Today’s readings When I was little, I often remember my grandmother saying “thank God for small favors!” Now that’s a holy and pious thought, and I’ll have you know my grandmother was certainly holy and pious. But when she said it, it was usually because someone had just done the least they could possibly do,… Continue reading Thursday of the Twenty-first Week of Ordinary Time

Monday of the Twenty-first Week of Ordinary Time

Today’s readings What is truly holy?  What makes a thing or a person holy?  Or, more precisely, who does those things?  Well, God, of course.  Today’s gospel has Jesus taking the Scribes and Pharisees to task for forgetting what is really holy and treating things as sacred while ignoring God who is holiness itself.  Apparently,… Continue reading Monday of the Twenty-first Week of Ordinary Time

Friday of the Twentieth Week of Ordinary Time [Mass of the Holy Spirit]

Today’s readings (Mass for the school children.) I can’t think of any better way to celebrate the beginning of the school year than by giving a teacher a pop quiz!  You can all relax: I’m not really going to do that.  But that’s what is going on in the Gospel reading today.  The Pharisees are a group of… Continue reading Friday of the Twentieth Week of Ordinary Time [Mass of the Holy Spirit]

Thursday of the Twentieth Week of Ordinary Time

Today’s readings I’m not going to sugar-coat this: the truth is that the story we have in our first reading is a horrible story.  Why  on earth would we worship a God who accept such a vow from Jephthah (or anyone else for that matter), or hold him to it? Well, let’s not get ahead… Continue reading Thursday of the Twentieth Week of Ordinary Time