First Homily: The Church is Worth Loving

This homily was delivered at my first mass I served as a deacon at St. Mary’s in Richmond, VA on May 19, 2019 At the end of mass last weekend, after inviting the entire St. Mary’s community to yesterday’s diaconate ordination, Fr Mike shared some off-the-cuff words with us. He said: “It fills me with faith to see young, talented…

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The Crucible of the Heart of Jesus

This reflection was delivered for my seminary community during Morning Prayer. The reading it is referring to is Judith 8:25-27. Nobody comes out of a crucible alive. It is a white-hot furnace designed to melt down the hardest metals. And yet our reading today says point blank: “Not for vengeance did the Lord put them in the crucible to try…

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Conversion, Saints

God Came in Like a Cannonball

Readings for the Memorial of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, Priest Today we hear the prophet Jeremiah say: “Why have you struck us a blow that cannot be healed?” It’s the voice of Israel lamenting that God has allowed them to suffer the consequences of their sins, but it’s also fitting on this feast of Ignatius of Loyola, who suffered a…

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Judgment, Reflections

God Is Not Nice

Readings for Tuesday of the Fifteenth Week in Ordinary Time In today’s gospel passage, Jesus is quite angry with the crowds who would not repent and believe. These moments can shock us into asking the question: “Where did nice-Jesus go?”