Sunday, September 17, 2023

The Bigness of Your Forgiveness

The first lines of the my recording are a little weird because I was making an announcement that because it's the 3rd Sunday of the month we would have Exposition, Adoration, and Confessions at the end of Mass, and I realized that was a really good segue way into the homily and hit record. So the recording catches the segue, but not the first lines of the announcement itself. 

Oh, and here's a link the Fr. Mike Schmitz video on forgiveness that I ended with.

Sunday, August 20, 2023

The Jews and Jesus

A family tragedy. A rending of God's own people. One story, one plan, one covenant, one arc, and yet by the end of the first century two families stand apart, both seeing themselves as the heirs of Abraham, and with chips on their shoulders. Centuries of distrust would follow.

How did we get here? Where do we go now? God clearly didn't want this. But (aside from a bare allowance of free will), did God allow this fracture so that other things might come of it, which He could use? We ponder it now, but Paul was already asking these questions in the 50s A.D. The question of Israel and Jesus wasn't his only topic in Romans, but a huge part of that letter is: God's Plan, Abraham's family, the triumph of Israel's messiah, and what does that mean for both Gentiles and Jews. 

The Canaanite woman reminds us that the Gentiles had to have some eventual place in God's plan and Romans 11 reminds us that Israel still has its role in the plan too. 

Sunday, August 6, 2023

Peter's Transfiguration: He Says Less, But Also More

On Saturday night I covered in Palmyra, Nebraska for my classmate, Fr. Sean Kilcawley. Because Sunday was August 6th, the Mass that evening was for the Feast of the Transfiguration. One cool benefit of having the feast on a Sunday is that, opposed to merely the gospel of Transfiguration as found on the 2nd Sunday of Lent, you get Peter's first-person account of it from his epistle too, and also the "Son of Man" prophecy from Daniel, which was the central text of all messianism in the final centuries leading up to Jesus.

Sunday, July 30, 2023

Paul, We Have Some Questions...

Paul claims that "God makes all things work for the good of those who love Him." But life seems contradict that. Hard. 

Why did I miss my flight? Why did I lose that job? Why did God allow this person hurt me? Why did that child die? Why doesn't God take away my temptations, addictions, and weakness?

So, Paul... we have some questions. 

¹ St. Thomas More, the last sentence of his 1534 "A Godly Meditation", see here.
² St. Maximilian Kolbe on why God doesn't immediately take away habitual temptation: see here.

Sunday, July 9, 2023

July: The Month of the Precious Blood

You are correct; this sermon was completely unrelated to the readings. One can do such things.

Sunday, July 2, 2023

The Death of the King

Homily for the 13th Sunday, Year A.  On the Letter to the Romans, Chapter 6:

And that homily refers at some length to this one given last fall, on the experience of mentally changing "Christ" to "Messiah" when reading the New Testament:

Sunday, June 18, 2023

While We Were Yet Enemies

I covered Masses this weekend in Exeter and Milligan, Nebraska (pop. 514 and 241 respectively) and it was fun. But all the same, I made them take out their missals and follow along on page 202 for the 2nd Reading because, well, I'm a one-trick pony. 

Jesus commands us, "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." Well, St. Paul thinks it's pretty lucky for us that God practices what he preaches. In Romans 5 today, Paul reflects that when we were still enemies of God, it was at that time that Christ died for us. 

Enemies. Ungodly. Sinners deserving of wrath. Thus does Paul describe us all. And to drive the point home he does grudgingly admit that maybe, just maybe, one might rake together enough courage to die for a really good man. Here I think Paul is referencing a well-known heroic story from the Greco-Roman world when he grants them this possibility. But all of that was just so Paul would be able to say, "And we weren't anything even close to that level of good people, or to being that kind of good friend." If I'm right about Paul thinking of that heroic story at this moment, then it's all the more fitting that Jesus followed up his call to love our enemies by noting that if you only love your friends, what's impressive about that? even the pagan Gentiles love their people that much.

Paul can be deep, or clever, or poetic, or culturally savvy. But in this handful of verses, he is all four.