Lent, Liturgical Seasons, Reflections

Catholic Olympics and Grace

Readings for Tuesday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time It’s hard to believe, but Lent kicks off tomorrow. Lent is that time of the year for each of us to seriously examine our hearts and enter more deeply into the mystery of our salvation. It’s a time to experience again the breathtaking mercy of our God, who at just…

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Art, Sacraments

“If you wish, you can make me clean.”

This weekend’s Gospel passage reveals Christ’s great desire to heal us of everything that drags us down and enslaves us. The leper comes to Jesus saying, “If you wish, you can make me clean.” Our Lord wastes no time reassuring him: “I do will it. Be made clean.” In the midst of the Church, the Lord’s desire to “make us…

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Reflections, Saints

Is Jesus Blasting Tradition?

Memorial of Saint Paul Miki and Companions, Martyrs This morning, I’d like to briefly comment on the topic of Tradition. When we hear Jesus say things like: “You disregard God’s commandment but cling to human tradition!” we might begin to wonder — is Jesus blasting all Tradition? What about Catholic traditions — are they safe? What does he mean by…

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Shut up and dance… like King David

Readings for Tuesday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time King David, for all his many flaws, teaches us an important lesson in today’s first reading: If we really want to worship the Living God, we won’t be able to blend in… In fact, if anyone finds themselves blending into today’s cultural mindset, I’d say something is very wrong. Like…

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Feast Days, Reflections, Saints

I wanted to watch your struggle

Readings for the Memorial of Saint Anthony, Abbot The story of David and Goliath is a classic Bible story — one that most anyone off the street would be familiar with. But at a deep, allegorical level, the David and Goliath story illustrates the spiritual combat we are each called to engage in on a daily basis. Goliath embodies all…

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Advent, Reflections

The Skepticism of Zechariah

Readings for Tuesday of the Third Week of Advent Gabriel’s words really stuck out to me today for some reason: “Do not be afraid, Zechariah, because Your prayer has been heard.”  Evidently, Zechariah had been praying that his wife Elizabeth would bear him a son — maybe for a very long time! And now — it was finally happening! His…

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Feast Days, Reflections, Virgin Mary

Our Lady of Guadalupe: Mary Wants to Visit Us

Readings for the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe Before my deeper conversion into Catholicism took place, I thought Marian apparitions like Our Lady of Guadalupe were kind of foreign and hard to take seriously… They seemed really unrelatable and superstitious to me — strange legends that only distracted from God. “Where does anything like that happen in the Bible,”…

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Advent, Reflections

Poor and Childlike: Open to Reality

Tuesday of the First Week of Advent I give you praise, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike. Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will. Who are the “wise and the learned” that Jesus is talking about? They are those who have already…

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Bored with God: Acedia the 8th Deadly Sin

The following talk was delivered at the Men’s Prayer Breakfast at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church: One of my favorite authors, GK Chesterton, once said: “There are no uninteresting things. Just uninterested people.” I think he’s right. The world around us is objectively interesting. The people, the places, the animals the colors, smells, sights… existence itself is miraculous…

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Liturgical Seasons, Reflections

Assembling the Nativity Scene

Readings for Friday of the 34th Week in Ordinary Time This week, they’ve been building the nativity scene out on the front lawn of the church. Mary and Joseph are out there, and the stable, the manger… a sheep, and of course… a donkey. Now we all know what that means when the nativity scene comes out again!  Christmas is…

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