Humbly receptive at the great banquet

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22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C: Sept. 1, 2013
Sir 3:17-18, 20, 28-29; Ps 68; Heb 12:18-19, 22-24; Luke 14:1, 7-14

In our Gospel reading today, we hear our Lord Jesus advise: “When you are invited to a wedding banquet, go and take the lowest place so that when the host comes to you he may say, ‘My friend, move up to a higher position.'” Now, as literal advice, taking the lowest place with that goal wouldn’t be real humility at all; it would be a manipulative fraud. But we know that our Lord Jesus is telling a parable here, and sometimes when he does so he exaggerates the everyday details of the story in order to make his point.

But imagine for a moment that you did take the advice literally; that you took the lowest place in the banquet; and no one noticed. (more…)

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El amor, la muerte, y la Resurrección

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Homilía en Novena de la Medalla Milagrosa, 29 Abril 2013
1 Jn 4, 7-10.16-19

Una frase en el Cantar de los Cantares (8, 6) nos dice: “Fuerte como la muerte es el amor.” Y reconocemos este deseo dentro de todo amor, ¿no? En el amor de un hombre por una mujer, o una mujer por un hombre; o los padres por los niños, u en otras relaciones familiares; o en una gran amistad; o incluso en el amor por un lugar, una nación, una idea, una obra de arte. En el amor queremos que nuestro amor, y sobre todo el amado, y nosotros que amamos—que todos seamos inmunes a la muerte. (more…)

Love, death, and the Resurrection

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Homily at Miraculous Medal Novena, April 29, 2013
1 John 4:7-10, 16-19

One line in the Song of Songs (8:6) tells us: “Love is strong as death.” And we recognize this desire within all love, don’t we? Within the love of a man for a woman, or a woman for a man; or parents for children, or other family relationships; or great friendships; or even in love for a place, a nation, an idea, a work of art. In love we want our love, and especially the beloved, and ourselves as those who love, to be impervious to death. (more…)

Ver al Cristo resucitado y ser un testigo

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II Domingo de Pascua, Año C: 7 Abril 2013
Hch 5, 12-16; Sal 117; Ap 1, 9-13.17-19; Jn 20, 19-31

En ese primer domingo de Pascua—al anochecer del día de la resurrecciónlos discípulos estaban encerrados en un cuarto, con las puertas cerradas, por miedo—por un miedo de que las mismas autoridades que habían dado muerte a Jesús quisieran perseguirles a ellos siguiente. Y ocho días después, estaban reunidos otra vez a puerta cerrada otra vez—a pesar de saber que él había resucitado.

Pero cuánto cambio vemos en la primera lectura, en un momento que pasó probablemente unos varios meses después. (more…)

To see the risen Christ and bear witness

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2nd Sunday of Easter, Year C: April 7, 2013
Acts 5:12-16; Ps 118; Rev 1:9-13, 17-19; John 20:19-31

On that first Easter Sunday—on the evening of that first day of the weekthe disciples were shut up in a room, with the doors locked, for fear—for fear that the same authorities who had just put Jesus to death would come after them next. And one week later they were inside again with the doors locked again—even though they knew he was risen.

But how much things had changed by the time of our first reading, which was probably just several months later. (more…)

La noticia buena e inquietante de la Resurrección

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Domingo de Pascua de la Resurrección del Señor:
31 Marzo 2013

Hch 10, 34.37-43; Sal 117; Col 3, 1-4; Lc 24, 13-35

Imagine por un momento qué habría pasado si la resurrección no hubiera ocurrido. En ese caso, cuando llegaron las mujeres al sepulcro muy de mañana, llevando sus perfumes, habrían encontrado la piedra todavía sentada firmemente en frente del sepulcro; y habrían tenido que encontrar a algunas personas para ayudarles a retirarla; y entonces habrían ungido el cuerpo muerto de Jesús. Habría sido una escena triste y depresiva: las mujeres, lamentando este profeta de Galilea, que había ido pasando haciendo el bien, sanando a muchos—ahora sólo otra víctima, traicionado por sus compatriotas y aplastado por el imperio. (more…)

The uncomfortable good news of the Resurrection

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Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of the Lord:
March 31, 2013

Acts 10:34, 37-43; Ps 118; Col 3:1-4; Luke 24:1-12

Imagine for a moment that the resurrection didn’t happen. In that case, when the women went to the tomb at daybreak carrying their spices, they would have found the stone firmly in front of the entrance; they would have had to find some people to help them to roll it away; and they would have anointed the dead body of Jesus. It would have been a sad, depressing scene: the women, sorrowing over this prophet from Galilee, who had gone about doing good and healing many—now just one more victim, betrayed by his countrymen and crushed by the empire. (more…)

La vida, el amor, y la fiesta de boda en Caná

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II Domingo Ordinario, Año C: 20 Enero, 2013
Is 62, 1-5; Sal 95; 1 Cor 12, 4-11; Jn 2, 1-11

Hubo una boda en Caná, leemos en nuestra lectura del Evangelio de hoy; y, como en nuestras bodas actuales, fue un tiempo de alegría, celebrando el principio del matrimonio de este hombre y esta mujer, novio y novia, ahora marido y mujer. Pero las celebraciones de bodas en la Tierra Santa en el siglo I fueron más largas que las de este país: duraron unos días. Hubo mucho banquetear, mucho gozar.

Pero, en esta boda particular, algo salió mal en la preparación. (more…)

Life, love, and the wedding feast at Cana

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2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C: Jan. 20, 2013
Isa 62:1-5; Ps 96; 1 Cor 12:4-11; John 2:1-11

There was a wedding at Cana, we hear in our Gospel reading today; and, as in our weddings today, it was a joyful time, celebrating the start of the marriage between this particular young man and young woman, the bridegroom and the bride, now husband and wife. But their wedding celebrations, in the Holy Land in the 1st century, were longer than ours now—they lasted for days. There was much feasting, much rejoicing.

But at this particular wedding, something had gone wrong with the planning. (more…)

Witnesses to joy

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33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B: Nov. 18, 2012
Dan 12:1-3; Ps 16; Heb 10:11-14, 18; Mark 13:24-32

For the Secular Discalced Carmelites (OCDS) at their semiannual Profession Mass.

As we approach the end of this liturgical year, our Gospel reading today comes from the 13th chapter of the Gospel according to Mark—a chapter sometimes known as the “Little Apocalypse,” for in it our Lord Jesus prepares his disciples for what would be coming. Some of it would be coming just 40 years later, when Jerusalem would be conquered and the Temple destroyed by the Roman Empire, while some of the generation of his time were still living. Some would come beyond that, in the future; indeed, even now it has yet to come. (more…)