To run forth to meet our Lord Jesus at his coming

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1st Sunday of Advent, Year B: Nov. 27, 2011
Isa 63:16-17, 19; 64:2-7; Ps 80; 1 Cor 1:3-9; Mark 13:33-37

Each year, for many people, the week of Thanksgiving brings many periods of watchful expectation. For these days include journeys, arrivals, and wonderful events that follow at the destination. How many children in how many cars will ask, “Are we there yet??” Well, that’s one kind of expectation! But perhaps we do better to think of the child inside the house looking out the front window and asking, “When will Grandma and Grandpa get here? Or my aunt or uncle? My cousins?”

And what is it that fills the hours and days before their arrival? (more…)

Cristo, el Rey que hemos esperado

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Nuestro Señor Jesucristo, Rey del Universo, Año A:
20 Noviembre 2011

Ez 34, 11-12.15-17; Sal 22; 1 Cor 15, 20-26.28; Mt 25, 31-46

Cada año, la Iglesia nos da la Solemnidad de Nuestro Señor Jesucristo, Rey del Universo, como el último domingo del año litúrgico. Y es conveniente, como escribió el Papa Pio XI (undécimo) cuando la instituyó en el año 1925, “pues así sucederá que los misterios de la vida de Cristo, conmemorados en el transcurso del año, terminen y reciban coronamiento en esta solemnidad.” (Quas primas, 31)

Y también, por instituir esta fiesta, esperó cambiar algo que estaba sucediendo en su tiempo—que mucha gente excluía a Cristo y su ley de la vida pública y la vida privada—que también pasa actualmente. (more…)

Deeper in love with His Majesty, our divine Spouse

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Our Lord Jesus Christ the King, Year A: Nov. 20, 2011
Ezek 34:11-12, 15-17; Ps 23; 1 Cor 15:20-26, 28; Matt 25:31-46

For the Secular Discalced Carmelite (OCDS) Community of Frederick Md. at its semiannual Profession Mass.

Each year, the Church gives us this Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, as the final Sunday of the liturgical year. And this is fitting, Pope Pius XI wrote when he instituted it in 1925, because the feast thus “sets the crowning glory upon the mysteries of the life of Christ already commemorated during the year.” (Quas primas, 29)

And, by establishing this feast, he hoped to reverse the trend of people excluding Christ and his law from both the public and private lives. (more…)

Christ the King: If these are the rules of life, then play the game to win!

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Our Lord Jesus Christ the King, Year A: Nov. 20, 2011
Ezek 34:11-12, 15-17; Ps 23; 1 Cor 15:20-26, 28; Matt 25:31-46

Think for a moment of some examples of competitive games that are based upon life itself.

  • You might think of the board game The Game of Life, in which you drive your little plastic car around the board, spinning the wheel and making choices about education, career, family, and retirement.
  • Or you might think of computer strategy games like Civilization or Age of Empires, in which, on a much larger scale, you guide the development of an entire society, making choices about farming, industry, the military, and cultural development.
  • Or you might think of any of the plethora of reality television shows (more…)

¿Qué resultados espera el Señor de ti?

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XXXIII Domingo Ordinario, Año A: 13 Noviembre 2011
Pr 31, 10-13.19-20.30-31; Sal 127; 1 Tes 5, 1-6; Mt 25, 14-30

Nuestro Señor nos cuenta una parábola situada en un entorno que conocemos bien: un entorno de negocios. Un entorno en el cual tenemos la expectación que los empleados usarán bien sus talentos, sus virtudes, sus experiencias, y todos los recursos a los cuales tienen acceso—que usarán todo esto y más, para alcanzar los objetivos del negocio—para lograr individualmente, y para que, por su logro personal, el negocio también logre.

Conocemos este entorno bien, ¿no? Todos los adultos aquí lo han vivido; y todos los jóvenes han sido enseñado que el mundo funciona así, y que tendrán que estar listos para funcionar bien en esta sistema. Y por eso ustedes siempre se preguntan: (more…)

Christ the Healer

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Healing Mass: Nov. 10, 2011
Isa 53:1-5, 10-11; Ps 102; 2 Cor 12:7b-10; John 15:1-8

The Catechism tells us (1509):

“Heal the sick!” The Church has received this charge from the Lord and strives to carry it out by taking care of the sick as well as by accompanying them with her prayer of intercession. She believes in the life-giving presence of Christ, the physician of souls and bodies.

When the Lord created the world, sickness and death were not a part of it — for it was very good. Human beings, especially, he created in his own Image. And he created us in this state of “original harmony”: (more…)

“Give me oil in my lamp”: Looking toward death, judgment, and the Resurrection

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32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A: Nov. 6, 2011
Wis 6:12-16; Ps 63; 1 Thess 4:13-18; Matt 25:1-13

This past week has presented us with several opportunities to think about the end of this earthly life, and what comes next.

  • On Monday evening, Halloween, we saw ghosts and skeletons walking down our streets, vampires and zombies coming up the walk, angels and little devils ringing our doorbells!
  • On Tuesday, All Saints, we gathered at Mass to celebrate all the holy men and women who have gone before us to reach the glory of heaven.
  • And on Wednesday, All Souls, we prayed for the repose of the souls of those undergoing their final purification in purgatory in preparation for their heavenly reward.

So it has been a good week for questions. (more…)

All Saints: So great a cloud of witnesses

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All Saints: Nov. 1, 2011
Rev 7:2-4, 9-14; Ps 24; 1 John 3:1-3; Matt 5:1-12

Actors have televised award ceremonies, like the Oscars. Athletes have championship trophies and rings. Soldiers have ranks and medals. Journalists have the Pulitzer; scientists have the Nobel. Mothers have Mother’s Day. Employees have… Employee of the Month awards. All of these are ways of publicly giving honor and expressing gratitude for a job well-done—and to encourage others to do the same job and so to hope to achieve that honor as well.

Today is the day that we honor All the Saints.

On other days, we focus in on one saint or a group of saints. So, in the past month, we remembered (more…)