Homilies

The Truth and the Witness to the Truth

Good morning.  There is a wonderful theme running through our readings this morning which can be summed up in the phrase, “light in the darkness”. Light is one of God’s creations which defines the universe and defines us.

The Great Sermon on the Mount

While reflecting on the Scriptures for this weekend's homily, I realized that we are coming to the end of the week of prayer for Christian unity, and the beginning of the week of prayer for vocations.  And something came back to me from a retreat I attended many years ago.

Installation of Fr. Michael Leclerc as Pastor of St. Ignatius of Loyola

Every year, between January 18 and January 25, Christians around the world celebrate a week of prayer for the unity of all Christians: to reflect on scripture together, to participate in ecumenical services, and to share fellowship.  In commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Pro

Little Christmas

Today, we celebrate the Solemnity of the Epiphany.  Often called “Little Christmas,” Epiphany is in fact no less important: for if Christmas focuses primarily on the birth of Jesus, the visit of the shepherds, the revelation of Jesus as Israel’s long-awaited Messiah, then Epiphany celebrates the

What if God was one of us?

There was once a teacher who assigned an art project to her kindergarten class.  Walking past their desks, she saw one little girl working with great intensity and focus.  So the teacher asked her: “What are you drawing, dear?”  “I’m drawing God!” the little girl answered.  The teacher said,

Gaudete Sunday

Good morning!  “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say rejoice. Indeed, the Lord is near.” (Philippians) We pause midway between the beginning of Advent and Christmas to take stock of ourselves.

Let us go rejoicing into the house of the Lord

Today we celebrate the feast of  Lord Jesus Christ King of the Universe , formerly called the Feast of Christ the King. What do we learn from our readings today? What’s the ‘pearl’, the ‘take-home’ message we can apply to our lives? How do we respond to a celebration of Christ’s kingship?

Who are the martyrs and heroes of today?

Today's Gospel presents us with a conflict between Jesus and a small but influential sect within first-century Judaism: the Sadducees. In a bizarre attempt to trick Jesus, they spin a story which we might call “One Bride for Seven Brothers.”  (The similarly-titled Hollywood musical, 7 brides for 7 brothers, is a lot more fun, with fantastic dancing!)  But for the Sadducees, this is no laughing matter.  Their whole convoluted story is a legalistic attempt to trick Jesus, to ridicule his belief in the Resurrection.    

A parable about the importance of humility

A contemporary spiritual master, the Indian Jesuit Anthony de Mello, once told the following story: “A notorious sinner was excommunicated and forbidden from entering the Church.  He went to God to complain: "Lord, they won't let me into the Church, because I'm a sinner."  The Lord replied, "I know how you feel.  They won't let me in either!"

Yes, wouldn't the Church be a wonderful place ... if we could just get rid of all the sinners!   We could finally escape from all the messiness associated with human sinfulness and imperfection.  The Church could be like an exclusive country club or high-end private school, with high standards for admission to keep out the riff-raff: a gathering-place for the spiritual elite.

God cares about those who suffer

A young priest went to the hospital one day to visit an elderly Italian parishioner prior to surgery, wearing his Roman collar.  As soon as the woman saw the collar, she said “No, no, Padre! I’m not dying!

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