13th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A

Once again as Catholics we encounter the hard saying of Jesus:  Whoever loves father or mother than me is not worthy of me.”  I remember when I was a missionary and was talking with my parish priest.  We ran into a fellow and in talking the priest mentioned that he hadn’t see him for awhile and the guy said, “I have been so busy lately that I just spend Sunday with my family.  Family must be most important, right Father?”  I found this to be an interesting question which many people would struggle to answer. The priest himself was caught off guard and simply didn’t address the question.  But it is a good point to reflect on. Questions such as, “Can a mother or father miss Mass to look after their sick child?”   The Church says yes because your vocation is how you live out your love of Christ. But is it right to miss Mass  simply to be with your family?  No, it is not, it happens to be serious matter for Confession. The order of our life is God first, spouse second, children third, family and friends after that. These sayings are hard, why would we follow them?  Well, according to God, it is the reward that we are looking for. They say serving God doesn’t pay much but the retirement package is out of this world. But for us as Christians, it is not just about heaven, it is also about living now in freedom and joy.

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12th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A

“Do not be afraid.”   God sees and knows everything. No one is going to get away with anything and anyone can be saved by trusting that God has it all in hand. I feel that one of my greatest fears is that my life and my opinion will count for nothing.  I fear that what I say will be discounted and mocked. It may even be true of society and the world but it is not true with God. Nothing I say or do will be discounted. There is great sorrow in life when we hope in worldly acknowledgement because in order to get that, we must follow the opinion of the world.

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Corpus Christi Year A

During the Corpus Christi Retreat, which Sister John Mary led, she reminded of us of a story that is often told about a Catholic priest and a pastor. The pastor told the priest, “If I believed what you believed, that Jesus was really present in the bread, I would walk on my hands and knees in the Church.”  It is a good reminder for sure of what we believe and we should often evaluate our reverence in the Church and towards God.  However, the same could be challenged of the pastor, if he really believed what he professed he would be down on his hands and knees praying and asking for grace before he dared lay a hand on Scripture. Scripture is the word of God and everything it says has to be taken seriously because these are the words of God, the saving and live giving words of God.  We, too, as Catholics must have a great reverence for Scripture and the Holy Eucharist.

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Holy Trinity Sunday Year A

While on my priest retreat this year, during my downtime, I watched a few movies. The first one I watched was called, “Of Gods and Men.”   It was about nine Trappist monks who lived in a small town in Algeria. They prayed, raised their garden, and interacted with the Muslim people of the village.  One of the monks was a doctor so he treated the poor people of the village. They were there in a time of unrest and at times the monks’ lives were even threatened, but they choose to stay out of love of God. Seven were eventually killed for a reason that still has not been discovered. My point in telling this story is that the monks lived on day by day knowing that doom was upon them, yet they lived in such love and tenderness towards each other and the people they served.  As each was able to come to terms with their most likely death, their peace increased. How does this story mean something for this Sunday?  It means something for me because of the nature of the Trinity. The Trinity is a relationship of Love.  They drew their strength to love outside of the Trinity because of their interior love within the Trinity.

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