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Lent

Are You Battle-Ready for the Army of the Lord?

February 23, 2018 8 Comments
Are You Battle-Ready for the Army of the Lord?

A disturbing report came from the Pentagon in 2014 that speaks to the overall condition of our country. Here is a summary: Nearly 71 percent of the 34 million 17-to-24-year-olds in the U.S. do not qualify for military service for reasons related to health, physical appearance, and educational background, according to the Pentagon. Obesity is […]

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Remembering That We Are Dust, as Seen in an Eerie Video

February 16, 2018 3 Comments
Remembering That We Are Dust, as Seen in an Eerie Video

It is my usual Friday routine to feature a video (often a commercial) and draw some biblical or spiritual principle from it. The video below is no commercial; it is post-war footage from Berlin in July of 1945. Interestingly it is in color, but it can only be described as eerie. People walk about among […]

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The Battle Theme of Lent

February 14, 2018 0 Comments
The Battle Theme of Lent

A brief observation of the first two days in Lent reveals militaristic, even violent imagery in the battle against sin and the unruly passions of the flesh. The Collect (opening prayer) of Ash Wednesday provides an image of troops mustering for battle: Grant, O Lord, that we may begin with holy fasting this campaign of […]

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Five Meanings of the Ashes We Receive Today

February 13, 2018 1 Comment
Five Meanings of the Ashes We Receive Today

As a boy, I remember wondering why so many people liked to rush to Church to get ashes smudged on their foreheads. Frankly, I had some revulsion at the idea. I didn’t like it at all and would secretly rub them off when no one was looking. Today, though I’ll admit I still don’t like […]

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Writing Straight with Crooked Lines – A Passion Week Meditation

April 13, 2017 2 Comments
Writing Straight with Crooked Lines – A Passion Week Meditation

During Holy Week, we ponder the events that led to Jesus’ death and resurrection. Among the things to reflect upon is a dramatic moment in the trial before Pilate, when the people present utter a curse upon themselves. When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took […]

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Just a Little Talk with Jesus Makes It Right – A Homily for the Third Sunday of Lent

March 18, 2017 8 Comments
Just a Little Talk with Jesus Makes It Right – A Homily for the Third Sunday of Lent

As we examine the Gospel for this weekend’s Mass we do well to understand that is about human desires and how the Lord reaches us through them. Prior to examining the text in detail, let’s consider a few things: What it is that really makes you happy? We desire so many things: food, water, shelter, […]

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Why Did Jesus Die in His Thirties?

March 14, 2017 13 Comments
Why Did Jesus Die in His Thirties?

Why did Christ die in his early thirties rather than as an older man? This would have permitted Him more time to teach and to set forth His Church. St. Thomas Aquinas answered the question in the following way: Christ willed to suffer while yet young, for three reasons. First of all, to commend the […]

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Three Teachings on Temptation

March 7, 2017 2 Comments
Three Teachings on Temptation

Sunday’s Gospel about the temptation of Jesus in the desert by Satan evokes several questions. The answers I propose are not intended to be a theological treatise, but rather a pastoral reflection. I. Why does God permit temptation? God does not permit any evil or problem unless it can serve some greater good. In the […]

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