Above and Beyond

Readings for Today

What an interesting reaction to Saint John the Baptist in today’s gospel. There are groups of people who are asking him what conversion means. The answers Saint John the Baptist gives are quite demanding. And yet, rather than getting angry or frustrated, the people recognize that indeed what they are being told to do should in fact be what they do. That if they do these things, rather than being sad, they will receive great joy. Today is Gaudete Sunday, the day where the focus is on rejoicing. What is God asking of you this Advent?

Homily recorded at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, University City, Missouri on December 22, 2018.

Above and Beyond

Above and Beyond
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Readings for Today

What an interesting reaction to Saint John the Baptist in today’s gospel. There are groups of people who are asking him what conversion means. The answers Saint John the Baptist gives are quite demanding. And yet, rather than getting angry or frustrated, the people recognize that indeed what they are being told to do should in fact be what they do. That if they do these things, rather than being sad, they will receive great joy. Today is Gaudete Sunday, the day where the focus is on rejoicing. What is God asking of you this Advent?

Homily recorded at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, University City, Missouri on December 22, 2018.

Homily for Sunday, December 14, 2014

Readings for Today

How do you see the world? Sometimes there can be the temptation to believe that only certain types of academic study really deals with the truth. Others might make judgements about certain aspects of life because of preconceived ideas. We certainly see this in our politics. We can make decisions about what we believe about something simply be considering who came up with the idea.

This is not to suggest that we do not see the world honestly. It is to suggest that our own experiences, our knowledge, our openness and more cause us to see some things more clearly. Take the example of someone who is very good at golf and someone who is not. They can both see a golf ball on the side of the hill but due to their ability they do not see the shot ahead of them in the same way. The more experienced golfer, due to the greater ability, might choose to attempt a more daring shot. Both golfers see the same golf ball on the side of the hill, but they each see something quite differently.

We also know that some people can look upon an event and see the best, while others expect the worst. Some people are very abstract in the way they think, while others can be more concrete. Some people view the world through the lens of beauty, in artistic ways, while others can be more practical and see only how something works. We can find how we interpret experience to be colored by many things.

This is not to suggest that we can change reality. Far from it. Rather, it means that we all need to be careful that we are committed to seeing the truth. And we all need to commit ourselves to seeing what is true, good and beautiful. And yet, for those of us who believe, we know the Holy Spirit helps us to see things as they are. This is exactly what the readings are getting at for us today. We see more clearly because we expect to see God. “The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me.

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