Lenten Resources

Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, Apostles

June 29, 2022

  Since Sunday, there has been an emphasis on placing Christ at the center of our lives, that even good things must come second to Christ. Today we celebrate two men who, in two unique ways, live that summons, even to death. The Gospel shares St. Peter’s confession that Jesus Christ is the messiah, a…

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Memorial of St. Irenaeus, Bishop & Martyr

June 28, 2022

  This gospel is one of my favorites since it demonstrates Jesus’ divinity. In the Old Testament, only God can control the water’s chaos. Look back at creation, the flood, and the parting of the Red Sea; whose power was manifested in all those situations? Was it not God? Now it is Jesus who, with…

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Monday of the Thirteenth Week in Ordinary Time

June 27, 2022

  Today’s Gospel repeats yesterday’s but in shortened form. Why would the Church repeat a Gospel like that? There must be something significant here. There is indeed something vitally important, the most important in fact, that following Jesus must come before ALL else, even things considered good and necessary. Our first reading highlights what happens…

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Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

June 26, 2022

  Being a Christian can be difficult. Its difficulty rests in its demand of us: it demands everything. Consider today’s Gospel—Jesus is personally inviting various people, “please, follow me.” In this invitation, Jesus calls them to be dedicated disciples who will proclaim him as Lord and Messiah, the coming of the Kingdom, and the new…

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Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary

June 25, 2022

  “…and his mother kept all these things in her heart.” These are the last words of today’s gospel. It’s the end of the episode of Joseph and Mary losing Jesus and finding him ultimately in the temple. Having worked at a grocery store for 12 years, I saw many moms and dads lose their…

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Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

June 24, 2022

  I remember in grade school, I was always picky about my artwork. Whenever we had to cut out any kind of shape from construction paper, I always wanted my shapes to look perfect. I hated cutting out circles, I could never get a perfectly shaped circle. Even when I creased the paper, folded it…

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Solemnity of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist

June 23, 2022

  Today we celebrate the Nativity of John the Baptist. John is my father’s name and it’s my baptismal name. So today is a very special celebration in my family. John Baptist had one sole purpose in life, to prepare people—to prepare people to meet their salvation, the Christ. He’s a guy that works in…

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Wednesday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time

June 22, 2022

  I like to tell people that Benedictine monks are in school their whole lives and that our graduation date is when we die. Monks open themselves to continuously being educated and formed by God and our monastic teachings. King David in our Responsorial Psalm today pleads to God, “Teach me the way of your…

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Memorial of St. Aloysius Gonzaga, religious

June 21, 2022

  I remember visiting my brothers in Alburquerque a few years back, and on a Saturday morning, I asked them to take me to the big city flea market. After parking the car I could already see a huge line at the gate door to get into the flea market. I told my brothers I…

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Monday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time

June 20, 2022

  The gospel today gives us the sad truth of our human nature. We are persons who are quick to judge others. But when it comes time to judge ourselves, we move like turtles. There’s a very important lesson here that needs to be looked at. Taking the time to reflect and pray about our…

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The Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

June 19, 2022

  I spent three years serving a parish in Oklahoma City, and I got to know many people. One person I got to know very well recently passed. I thought of him today as we celebrate this feast of Corpus Christi. When I first met this friend at the parish, he came up to me…

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Saturday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time

June 18, 2022

  The first reading from 2 Chronicles 24:17-25 recounts the disastrous reign of King Joash. His return to the worship of pagan idols and his murder of Zechariah, son of Jehoiada the priest brought ruin upon Judah and Jerusalem. This story about an unfaithful king makes the entrance antiphon take on special significance today: “Hail,…

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Friday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time

June 17, 2022

  In the first reading of today’s liturgy from the Second Book of Kings (11:1-4, 9-18, 17-18), we find the story of Joash, the child who was destined to be king, and how he was hidden away in the temple of the Lord for six years to protect him from the wicked Athaliah. Jehoiada the…

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Thursday of the Eleventh Week of Ordinary Time

June 16, 2022

  Our first reading today from the Book of Sirach is a follow-up to the passages we have been hearing this week from the Second Book of Kings. It pays tribute to the life and accomplishments of the prophet Elijah and of his successor, Elisha. Yesterday, we placed the text of the entrance antiphon on…

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Wednesday of the Eleventh Week of Ordinary Time

June 15, 2022

  Today we continue our reading of the Second Book of Kings with the account of Elijah handing over his role as prophet to his disciple, Elisha. The young man is frightened by the thought of his master’s departure. As a flaming chariot suddenly appears and transports Elijah up to heaven, Elisha is left alone…

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Tuesday of the Eleventh Week of Ordinary Time

June 14, 2022

  Today we continue the story of the vineyard of Naboth. In the first reading, we hear of the aftermath of Ahab’s actions in the wrongful murder of Naboth and seizure of his vineyard. The prophet Elijah confronts him directly for his greed. “The Lord says: After murdering, do you also take possession?” (1 Kgs:…

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Memorial of St. Anthony of Padua, Priest & Doctor of the Church

June 13, 2022

  Today’s entrance antiphon—“Those who are wise will shine brightly like the splendor of the firmament and those who lead the many to justice shall be like the stars for ever.” Cf. Dn 12:3— stands in sharp contrast with the first reading. St. Anthony’s life of preaching was a beacon of wisdom that lead many…

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The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity

June 12, 2022

  The liturgy today opens with the words: “Blest be God the Father, and the Only Begotten Son of God, and also the Holy Spirit, for he has shown us his merciful love.” This acclamation of praise gives voice to our faith in the Most Holy Trinity, the focus of our reflection on this first…

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Memorial of St. Barnabas, Apostle

June 11, 2022

  “When he arrived and saw the grace of God, he rejoiced and encouraged them all to remain faithful to the Lord in firmness of heart, for he was a good man, filled with the Holy Spirit and faith.” Notice this: this ‘son of encouragement,’ as his name means, can ‘see’ the grace of God…

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Friday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

June 10, 2022

  “The Lord will be passing by.” The prophet in our first reading is standing there, not in an ego-gratifying posture but to receive a mission—which we will hear about at the end of the passage. It is a mission that glorifies the grace of God at work in the prophet and produces in him…

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Thursday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

June 9, 2022

  “I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees you will not enter into the Kingdom of heaven.” We are a sacramental people. We can say the same thing if we say that we are a mystical people. This means that holiness does not flow out of moral effort; moral…

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Wednesday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

June 8, 2022

  “I have come not to abolish but to fulfill.” St. Paul talks about this fulfilling in relation to Christ’s suffering for his bride, the Church: “Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of…

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Tuesday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

June 7, 2022

  “Your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.” This is light we already have if we are united to Christ. To be of Christ, a disciple of Christ—Christ in the world and yet in heaven too—is to live the truth in love: “the one…

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Memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church

June 6, 2022

  Standing by the cross of Jesus was his mother … When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son. Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his home. The Church today…

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Pentacost Sunday

June 5, 2022

  “Peace be with you.” Notice what Jesus does immediately following those words—he “showed them his hands and his side.” It is as if he were saying to them—and to us—‘See what this gift I am giving you has cost me! It comes from my love for you! It is the precious gift of the…

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Saturday of the Seventh Week of Easter

June 4, 2022

  I have to admit that sometimes I get angry because I want to be angry. In certain cases, it is to control an otherwise chaotic situation, while in others, it is to distract from where my anger ought to be directed: at my own sinfulness. St. Peter tried to show righteous anger by getting…

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Memorial of St. Charles Lwanga and Companions, martyrs

June 3, 2022

  Where I went to school in Oregon, there was a perfect view of Mount Hood and the Cascades. I say that, but that was only on days when it was not overcast. In Oregon, you had to believe that there were mountains behind the clouds even when you did not always see them. Knowing…

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Thursday of the Seventh Week of Easter

June 2, 2022

  The reading from Acts tells how St. Paul knowingly pits different factions of Judaism against the other. He sides with the Pharisees, who believe in the resurrection of the body, against the Sadducees who do not. He plays on this disunity to give himself a shot at bringing the gospel right to the halls…

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Memorial of St. Justin, martyr

June 1, 2022

  Christian morality is other-centered: to be self-forgetful, to sacrifice for ourselves, and to serve rather than be served. So it might surprise us that Paul’s tells the clergy at Miletus they must be firstly vigilant over their own lives. Service is, of course, implied. However, just as on an airplane you are told to…

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Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

May 31, 2022

  The prophet Zephaniah uses a well-known trope: Daughter Zion. It is the holy city personified. Now, when most people personify a concept—like Lady Liberty—it is an idealized portrait. For the Hebrews, it was nothing of the sort! It was warts and all, the kind of woman who goes astray, even gets dismissed by her…

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Monday of the Seventh Week of Easter

May 30, 2022

  When I was made pastor of two small, rural parishes, it took me a bit to learn to preach in a way that didn’t fly right over their heads. It’s a challenge to both speak plainly, while not devaluing the mysteries proclaimed. Yet, when you really can connect the dots for people they start…

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The Ascension of the Lord

May 29, 2022

  Once while I was working at The Printery House, a religious sister wrote in to complain about our greeting cards referring to “heaven above.” She quite rightly noted that Pope John Paul II had pointed out that heaven was not a place but a state of being. In other words, we will not go…

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Saturday of the Sixth Week of Easter

May 28, 2022

  “Amen, amen, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you.” (Jn 16:23b) We are to ask the Father in Jesus’ name. We ask for what we need in his holy name. What’s in a name, you ask? Power! To name something is to claim it. Jesus…

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Friday of the Sixth Week of Easter

May 27, 2022

  The Lord said to Paul in a vision, at night: Do not be afraid. Go on speaking. Do not be silent. I am with you. (see Acts 18:9) These are the words every preacher, teacher, catechist, and missionary wants to hear: encouragement and affirmation! Paul was out on a limb. He had seen a…

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Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter

May 26, 2022

  Ascension Thursday (observed in some US dioceses, traditional day) Today is the fortieth day since Easter Sunday inclusive. After forty days of appearing to and instructing his Apostles, Christ the King ascends his throne in Heaven, as it is written, “He presented himself alive to them by many proofs after he had suffered, appearing…

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Wednesday of the Sixth Week of Easter

May 25, 2022

  “I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now.” (Jn 16:12, NAB) The truth can be too much to handle sometimes. I think of the line from Colonel Jessup in A Few Good Men: “You can’t handle the truth!” The truth can be a hard pill to swallow. But it’s…

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Tuesday of the Sixth Week of Easter

May 24, 2022

  Torture. Humiliation. Imprisonment. “After inflicting many blows on them, they threw them into prison….” (Acts 16:23) In the innermost cell, their feet were tied to a stake. How are they going to get out of this one? “About midnight…” St. Luke writes a gripping story. What happens? Paul and Silas are up. They’re not…

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Monday of the Sixth Week of Easter

May 23, 2022

  Today’s Collect (opening prayer) is asking that we may “experience…the fruits,” the effects of doing all this serving and praying and trying to follow Him. That we may experience…. What does observing the paschal mysteries feel like? We are, after all, both body and spirit. Catholics are known for involving all the senses in…

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Sixth Sunday of Easter

May 22, 2022

  Proclaim! (from Isaiah 48:20) Celebrate! (from the Collect) This is how the Sixth Sunday of Easter begins. We are still basking in the rays of the Risen Lord. However, this is the last week before he leaves us for the Father. But he will not leave us orphans; he will send the Advocate, the…

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Saturday of the Fifth Week of Easter

May 21, 2022

  “If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you.” In today’s Gospel, we are given what looks like, at first glance, a grim forecast for the life of a…

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