Reflections

Strength of a Mountain

This past Thursday and Friday, I had the blessing of traveling with my youngest daughter on a whirlwind day-and-a-half college tour from Michigan to Cincinnati to Cleveland and back to Michigan. At some point, because fathers just know, I turned to my daughter and gave her my advice where she should attend and then had some fun and predicted a future event when a boy named Tommy Gunn would call and let me know he was in love with her.…

Our Heavenly and Earthly Father

Yet we are courageous, and we would rather leave the body and go home to the Lord. (2 Corinthians 5:8) I don’t know how you feel about this personal statement from St. Paul. Do you find it odd for people to wish to die so that they could be at home with our heavenly Father forever? Or do you find it rather dark and off-putting? No matter how we take it, I think that for a healthy person to wish to be at…

Where Are We?

A website devoted to the discipline of psychology reminds that when we lose something, we should embrace a three-prong approach: first, calm down and don’t panic; second, carefully look around; and third, if necessary, trace our steps. After considering these, many Catholics have long recommended a fourth option; that is, a quick shoutout to St. Anthony of Padua. For Anthony, the twelfth-century Doctor of the Church and patron of the poor, is also known for his assistance in finding missing…

Turning a House into a Home

The Gospel passage for the Tenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Mark 3:20-35) mentions what is needed, in Jesus’ eyes, to turn a house into a home.  Jesus came home with his disciples. Mark 3:20 Jesus and his disciples had been on a mission to preach the good news of God’s Kingdom in many villages and towns. At home, in Capernaum, they were in urgent need of recovering and re-energizing themselves before the next mission. However, the crowds had even more pressing…

The Holy Eucharist Should Embolden Us

It is patently clear that the word “blood” is the most revealing word in all three readings of this liturgy. We immediately associate blood with life; while we recoil from the sight of spilled blood as, right away, it conjures up the specter of a violent death. The significance and the message conveyed by blood are evident in the sealing of the covenant between the community (the twelve tribes of Israel represented by the twelve pillars) and Yahweh God (Exodus…

The Most Holy Trinity

One day a girl brought home her report card. Most of the grades were all right, and a few were even very good—but there was one glaring exception that stood out like a sore thumb, no doubt due to a lack of effort on the girl’s part in that particular subject. When her mother saw this grade, she demanded in an angry tone, “Young lady, I want you to explain to me why you got an ‘F’ in spelling!” The girl shrugged her…

Trinitarian Love and Mercy

The feast of the Most Holy Trinity is providential in more ways than one. The statement I am about to make about it might sound outlandish and preposterous: this feast is providential because a good number of believers tend to reduce God to a manageable size which would make our brand of religiosity convenient and God somewhat “controllable.” Let us put this unwise thought to rest right away: Our God is in heaven; whatever God wills is done. (Psalm 115:3) Already in…

Pentecost: Our Decision Time

Fierce attacks have been, and are, directed mostly against the Catholic Church by those who are hellbent on replacing reality, nature, truth, decency, and common sense with crazy ideologies inspired by the prince of darkness. Satan’s minions know that the Catholic Church might be the last standing bulwark of morality based on natural law and on the Gospel. Hence, it should not be surprising that often we get upset, deeply concerned, and even become apprehensive and frightened just watching the…

Seeds

 And he spoke to them at length in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky ground, where it had little soil. It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep, and when the sun rose it was scorched, and it withered for lack of roots. Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and…

The Ascension of the Lord

The Ascension of the Lord Jesus is a Solemnity because for Jesus, as Head of the Body, it marks the crowning of his complete triumph over all our enemies, death included, and his full glorification by the Father. As far as we, members of the Body are concerned, this Solemnity comprises all that the Risen Lord said and did after his Resurrection to prepare all his disciples, across the millennia, to abide in him, to relate to him and to…

Do We Partially Love God?

As I prepared this homily, I realized that all three readings are building on last Sunday’s readings by insisting on the vital importance of loving. I became thoroughly scared, with an awful knot in my stomach, because it was difficult for me to come up with verifiable evidence of loving not in word or speech but in deed and truth. (cf. 1 John 3: 18) You might want to check your love level and see if you get the same feeling I got.…

A Spiritual Tune-UP

Here is an official invitation to get a spiritual tune-up. Remain in me, as I remain in you. Just as a branch cannot bear fruit on its own unless it remains on the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in me. John 15:4 It is about daily life lived while being supernaturally grafted to Christ, the way a branch is naturally attached to its vine. Hence, we shall assess our spiritual condition in relation to Jesus as the…