Clean and beautiful, inside and out

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22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B: Aug. 30, 2015
Deut 4:1-2, 6-8; Ps 15; James 1:17-18, 21-22, 27; Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23

In the Gospel reading we have just heard, the Pharisees and the scribes took Jesus’ disciples to task for not washing their hands before eating, according to the customs of the time. Now, we should remember that their motivation for such handwashing was not being sanitary, but rather ritual purity. The law that the Lord gave his people in the Old Covenant required certain kinds of washing—especially of priests preparing to offer sacrifice, but also of all people in certain circumstances—for the sake of ritual purity.

But there is a problem with the Pharisees’ view of this: (more…)

El Cordero de Dios y el apoyo compasivo por la vida

Sólo audio: Escucha mp3 (Largo: 15:41)
II Domingo Ordinario, Año A: 19 Enero 2014
Is 49, 3.5-6; Sal 39; 1 Cor 1, 1-3; Jn 1, 29-34 (more…)

The Lamb of God and merciful support for life

Audio only: Listen to mp3 file (Length: 15:44)
2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A: Jan. 19, 2014
Isa 49:3, 5-6; Ps 40; 1 Cor 1:1-3; John 1:29-34 (more…)

Unexpected Light in darkness

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The Nativity of the Lord (Christmas): Dec. 25, 2013
Mass during the Night

Isa 9:1-6; Ps 96; Tit 2:11-14; Luke 2:1-14

When I first arrived at St. Martin’s, back in January, sometimes I would be standing outside in the parking lot, or somewhere else on the property, after dark, talking with someone. And I would notice that, from time to time, a flash of light would light up everything for just a moment, and then it would go dark again. The effect was just like a flash of lightning—except that there was no storm. What was it? Eventually I realized: it was the speed camera!

How fascinating and entertaining that speed camera is, as it takes photos of any cars that pass us going south too fast above the 30 mph speed limit!

But isn’t that just what light can do in darkness? (more…)

Joy in his timing, his priorities

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3rd Sunday of Advent, Year A: Dec. 15, 2013
Isa 35:1-6, 10; Ps 146; James 5:7-10; Matt 11:2-11

We have reached the Third Sunday of Advent, and our excitement is building for the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus! Or at least it is if we are letting the Scripture readings each week sink into our hearts.

  • For back on the First Sunday, we heard our Lord Jesus promise that he would come again, and warn us that when he would come would be unexpected. And so he urged us: Stay awake! Be prepared!
  • And then, last week, we were reminded by the prophet Isaiah and John the Baptist about why we should look forward to this Second Coming with anticipation. (more…)

La esperanza y la perseverancia en Adviento

Sólo audio: Escucha mp3 (Largo: 13:00)
II Domingo de Adviento, Año A: 8 Diciembre 2013
Is 11, 1-10; Sal 71; Rom 15, 4-9; Mt 3, 1-12 (more…)

Advent and the growing spark of hope

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2nd Sunday of Advent, Year A: Dec. 8, 2013
Isa 11:1-10; Ps 72; Rom 15:4-9; Matt 3:1-12

Back in 1950, the residents of the town of Flagstaff Village, Maine, knew that their town would soon be flooded. A dam was being built that would expand the nearby lake, completely covering where their town was then standing. And so plans were being made to move the residents elsewhere, and to clear the land before the flooding.

And during those final months, as one man noted, no repairs were being done. Which is pretty understandable. After all, why paint a wall, or repair a hole, or improve any aspect of a house that will soon be destroyed? So no one did it. They just let them go.

Perhaps you know the feeling. (more…)

¡Despierte y prepárese para el Adviento del Señor!

Sólo audio: Escucha mp3 (Largo: 16:34)
I Domingo de Adviento, Año A: 1 Diciembre 2013
Is 2, 1-5; Sal 121; Rom 13, 11-14; Mt 24, 37-44 (more…)

Wake up and get ready for the Advent of the Lord!

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1st Sunday of Advent, Year A: Dec. 1, 2013
Isa 2:1-5; Ps 122; Rom 13:11-14; Matt 24:37-44

A few weeks ago, I was visiting one of our classes in the school; and in their religion textbook they were beginning a chapter entitled “Christ Will Come Again.” It was a chapter that presented to them this truth that we believe and that we profess each week: that Jesus will come again in glory; that we look forward to his Second Coming.

And this is the primary focus of Advent. The word “Advent” itself comes from the Latin for coming or arrival: it is Jesus’ coming, his Second Coming, that we called to look forward to, and to prepare for. (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…)