In today’s Gospel, we meet Jesus, preaching for the first time in front of the folks from home – the villagers who had seen him grow up, including his own extended family. This was a tough challenge. Small towns, which have their definite advantages, also sometimes breed small-mindedness.
Like many of you, I was shocked to hear the news last week of the killing of nine innocent people – all African-Americans – attending a Bible study at the African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina. At a memorial service for their pastor (and South Carolina state Senator)
Given that World Environment Day actually occurs on June 5, it is a marvelous gift that the readings for our liturgies this weekend provide us with such rich images for our celebration of this special day.
We celebrate today “Corpus Christi”: the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ. For those of “a certain age”, it conjures up images of processions through the streets with the Blessed Sacrament: candles, flowers, people in the streets bowing and even kneeling on the sidewalk as the
“If being Christian were a crime ... would there be enough evidence to convict you?” I read that rather disturbing question when I was a teenager, and it left enough of an impression that 30 years later, I still remember it. Every so often, I even ask myself the question again!
The Christian community’s experience of the Resurrection is so profound that we continue to meditate on this great mystery for fifty days. Today’s Feast of the Ascension and next week’s Feast of Pentecost are really a continuation of Easter, the celebration of the great Paschal mystery.
Today, on this 4th Sunday of Easter, the image of Jesus as the Good Shepherd is placed before us, as the Church marks the World Day of Prayer for Vocations. I do not need to remind you that priests and religious are no