Homily for Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Readings for Today

I am always a little tempted when the genealogy reading comes up in the gospel to read. If for no other reason, it is to see if I can read it with the type of conviction that might cause people to pay attention. Usually I do not. And yet, when we think about celebrating a birthday, it might be the best time for us to think about the connections we have to the past, and will have in the future.  For better or worse, our family and our relatives are connected.

What is interesting to me is that we do not choose these connections. We did not have auditions to see what relatives would “make the cut.” They were given to us, whether we wanted them to be or not. We did not have a choice in the matter. We do however have a choice in how we will allow them to influence us.

Most people can look to their relatives and see how, in positive ways, they have shaped the persons we are and whom it is we will become. When I think of my relatives, they are probably not a lot different from yours. There are some relatives of mine I admire deeply and seek to emulate in my faith and in the way I live my life. There are others for whom faith is not as important. At the same time, they still impact the person I am, either because I have been shaped by past experiences or people I care about have been shaped by past experiences.

The Blessed Mother is no different. Just as we are, she too was shaped and molded by her relatives. Like most family trees hers too is filled with a variety of people, with a variety of serious expressions of faith. We know she was open to being shaped by Jesus too, perhaps most especially when we see of her struggle, and that of her relatives, in trying to figure out this son of hers.

Perhaps what is most important when we consider the first reading. Saint Paul reminds us that all that God does God does for a purpose. It is not purely a chance event that allows some to be saved, while others who may not have had that chance event are out of luck. No, if there is any important lesson on a day when we recall the Blessed Mother, it is precisely that God is ever-present seeking to invite us again and again to a deeper life with him.

In many ways, it is not just that we did not choose our family. Most of us did not choose our family of faith either. Whether we are a life long Catholic, or someone new, those witnesses that led us to faith came to us by grace. But the choice is not luck, but is for the purpose God sets before us.


The Beatification of Pio Alberto Del Corona, OP

From the Dominican website:

On the 17th of Sepember 2014, at an audience with Cardinal Angelo Amato, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, Pope Francis approved a healing attributed to the intercession of Venerable Pio Alberto Del Corona. The approval clears the way for his beatification which will come up on the 19th of September 2015 at San Miniato, Italy. – See more at: http://www.op.org/en/content/beatification-pio-alberto-del-corona-op-0#sthash.ApOaszf0.dpuf

Homily for Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Readings for Today

Salt.  Light.  Bread.  Water. As Catholics, we like the tangible.  And the powerful belief we hold is that God can become real in these types of ordinary things.  And perhaps because of this, some find it hard to believe.  Our lives seem too ordinary.  Great things can be explained away as a coincidence.  Relying only on what we see can appear to be quite safe and secure.

Jesus calls his disciples to be noticed.  Putting salt on things gets noticed.  Being light gets noticed.  We are called to be noticed, by standing up for our faith, by witnessing to the faith by the actions we take.  This means that we need the grace so that we are not afraid to speak what we believe, and live our faith.  This does not mean we need to be obnoxious about it, but if we believe we have found something life-changing, it means we should want to share this with others.

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Homily for Monday, June 9, 2014

Readings for Today

What do you do when something becomes too familiar?  Today’s gospel from Matthew about the Beatitudes is one that can be missed because we might have heard it quite often.  As a result, we may not pay attention as closely as we should.  Or, even if we hear the words, we might not allow them to sink in as deeply as they should.  We might comfort ourselves that since we have heard these words often, we know what they mean and we think we live them.

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