The Most Holy Trinity

05-27-2018Weekly Reflection©2018 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

Happy Trinity Sunday! In today's Gospel, we hear Jesus declare together all three Persons of the Trinity. "Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."

Made in the image and likeness of God, we are called to imitate God's immanence by giving and receiving love with one another in community. However, this is not limited only to those close to us, though that's where love often starts. We also imitate the economy of God when we go out, when we extend our love and care in a life-giving way. "Go therefore?" Every believer is sent on mission. Every believer is invited to follow Jesus and the Apostles "to the nations," to the margins, to the people who require a little extra reach. This could be a distant relative, the residents of your local homeless shelter or even the forgotten neighbor next door! When we love well, we create something beautiful-a relationship, a holy moment, a foretaste of heaven.


What does Pentecost the feat mean to us?

05-20-2018Weekly Reflection©2018 Liturgical Publications, Inc

As one of the most important solemnities on the Church's calendar, it has a rich depth of meaning, but here is how Pope Benedict summarized it in 2012:

This Solemnity makes us remember and relive the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles and the other disciples gathered in prayer with the Virgin Mary in the Upper Room (cf. Acts 2:1-11). Jesus, risen and ascended into Heaven, sent his Spirit to the Church so that every Christian might participate in his own divine life and become his valid witness in the world. The Holy Spirit, breaking into history, defeats aridity, opens hearts to hope, stimulates and fosters in us an interior maturity in our relationship with God and with our neighbor.


The Ascension of the Lord

05-13-2018Weekly Reflection©2018 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

This Sunday's Gospel is known as the "priestly prayer" of Jesus. The entire passage is Jesus entrusting us to the Father. "When I was with them I protected them ? I guarded them," Jesus says. He asks his Father, "Keep them in your name." In this prayer of Jesus, we see the paradoxical tension of our life as Christians in the world. He anticipates struggle for the believer. He describes it in strong words, words that could even appear frightening to the believer. "I gave them your word, and the world hated them." Not only that, but with our eyes on eternal life, we "do not belong to the world." And yet in the midst of those realities, Jesus doesn't take us out of the world. On the contrary, "as you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world."


Sixth Sunday of Easter

05-06-2018Weekly Reflection©2018 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

"I have called you friends." Authentic friendship can seem hard to come by these days, especially in our transient society. We move away from family, change jobs, switch parishes, and end up in entirely new places with entirely new people. When we look for new friends, we all have different qualities we're looking for. While we may think of certain standards of behavior necessary to be a "good" friend, we would hardly refer to them as rules or "commandments."


Fifth Sunday of Easter

04-29-2018Weekly Reflection©2018 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

Are you ready for a trim? In today's Gospel, we hear the familiar teaching of the vine and the branches. Jesus reminds us that if we remain close to him-living in humility, following God's law, loving our neighbor-we will notice a positive change in our life and the lives of those around us.


Fourth Sunday of Easter

04-22-2018Weekly Reflection©2018 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

Today's Gospel occurs in the middle of Jesus' ministry. At first, Jesus' words seem to be about the value of self-sacrifice in a leader. "I am the Good Shepherd. I will lay down my life for the sheep." The Apostles likely would have accepted these words easily enough. But then comes something more strange. "I lay down my life in order to take it up again. I have power to lay it down and power to take it up again." Only later, when Jesus opened the Scriptures to them after his resurrection, would the Apostles understand his words. Only then would they understand why such an act was necessary for the salvation of the world.


Third Sunday of Easter

04-15-2018Weekly Reflection©2018 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

"Why do questions arise in your hearts?" After the Resurrection, the Apostles experienced their fair share of incredulity. Jesus had died-John had been there-and now the tomb was empty. What should they believe? Was the Jesus before them truly real? And who was Jesus really? It's no surprise that the Apostles were initially "startled and terrified" to the extent that they "thought that they were seeing a ghost." Jesus has compassion on his confused friends. Once he affirms his non-ghostly identity--"look at my hands and my feet, that it is I myself"--Jesus gets down to business.


The Resurrection of the Lord

04-01-2018Weekly Reflection©2017 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

The first light of Easter dawn had begun to creep over the horizon. The steadfast women from Friday's gory events are returning again to the body of their Lord. "Who will roll back the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?" How quickly we return to mundane concerns and how thoroughly God wants to surprise us! Imagine the utter shock upon seeing the stone rolled away, the tomb empty, and a stranger clothed in light proclaiming the impossible. "You seek Jesus of Nazareth, the crucified. He has been raised; he is not here." He is risen indeed and the world will never be the same.


Palm Sunday

03-25-2018Weekly Reflection©2017 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

Our humanity bleeds through today's Gospel passages in more ways than one. We see both elation and fall, hope in the midst of the darker sides of our natures. If we allow it, these Gospels hold a mirror to our own fickle hearts. The crowds cry "Hosanna" and the Apostles profess allegiance unto death. In a manner of days -- even hours -- Jesus is betrayed, abandoned, denied, condemned, tortured, and executed. As God, he could have stopped this horrific narrative from unfolding, but he doesn't. He allows free will to play itself out.


Fifth Sunday of Lent

03-18-2018Weekly Reflection©2018 Liturgical Publications, Inc

Now there were some Greeks among those who had come to worship at the feast. They came to Philip and asked him, 'Sir, we would like to see Jesus.'" It has begun. News of Jesus has spread beyond native-born, Aramaic-speaking Jews. We don't know if the Greeks mentioned here heard of Jesus from fellow travelers or if news of this intriguing rabbi had reached all the way to their home. What we do know is that this interaction spurred an interesting comment from Jesus: "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified." In other words, it has begun. The time has come for the message to move beyond the geographic bounds of Israel.


Fourth Sunday of Lent

03-11-2018Weekly Reflection©2017 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

Why is the world the way it is? We all wonder that from time to time. Each successive generation projects rose-hued longing on the past and casts furtive glances at the impending future. We see forces beyond our control in nature and in the newspaper. The world is changing and we're being pulled out with the tide.


Third Sunday of Lent

03-04-2018Weekly Reflection©2017 Liturgical Publications, Inc.

We all have things in our lives that don't belong there. Maybe it's the poor way we allow someone to treat us, maybe it's a habitual sin, maybe it's a pattern of thought or attitude that traps us in a cycle of regret, anger, or an inability to forgive. Jesus has bold words for us today: "Take these out of here."