April 2018

Reflections April 30

2018-04-08T20:46:23-05:00April 30th, 2018|Reflections|

Feast of St. Pius V 

John 14:21-26 

Jean Vanier wrote: “To be in communion means to be with someone and to discover that we actually belong together. Communion means accepting people just as they are, with all their limits and inner pain, but also with their gifts and their beauty and their capacity to grow. To love someone is not first of all to do things for them, but to reveal to them their beauty and value. To love someone is to reveal to them their capacities for life, the light that is shining in them.” Together we are the Body of Christ. 

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Reflections April 29

2018-04-08T20:44:25-05:00April 29th, 2018|Reflections|

Fifth Sunday of Easter 

John 15:1-18 

Every one of our actions affects many people, known or unknown for good or bad.  We are a link in a chain; we are branches on a vine.  And how these relationships can be healthy ones is the point of the allegory in the story of the vine and the branches. The vine does everything for the branches.  It is the vine that draws sap from the earth and passes it along to the branches.  Apart from the vine, the branches are empty vessels or conduits – withering and lifeless.  Depending on our relationship with the vine will determine how we relate with other branches. Is Jesus the source of life for me? How do I pass this life on to others? 

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Reflections April 28

2018-04-08T20:43:20-05:00April 28th, 2018|Reflections|

Feast of St. Peter Chanel 

John 14:7-14 

“To those who believe, no explanation is necessary. To those who do not believe, no explanation is possible.” These words appeared on screen to introduce the 1943 film The Song of Bernadette. Again and again, Jesus underscores the source of his authority — the Father — but even his own disciples cannot grasp the nature of the Father. We can almost hear the exasperation in Jesus’ voice in today’s Gospel. All of us feel a need at times to have something more real and tangible than an un-seeable and unknowable God. When we see Jesus we see the Father. If others can see us act with love and kindness, we are showing them the face of God.

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Reflections April 27

2018-04-08T20:42:08-05:00April 27th, 2018|Reflections|

John 14:1-6 

In his Last Supper farewell to his disciples, Jesus assures them that he goes “to prepare a place” for them in the Father’s “house.” As Christians, we live in the eternal hope of one day living in God’s dwelling place – but that “place” of hope and compassion and peace exists in the present, in the places we create where the poor and sick are cared for, the fallen are lifted up, and lost and rejected are sought after and returned. This is the place, this is the Church.

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Reflections April 26

2018-04-08T20:40:42-05:00April 26th, 2018|Reflections|

John 13:16-20 

Jesus is speaking to his disciples on the night before he died.  He is talking to them about humble service and sacrificial devotion.  He talks in guarded terms about how they will experience his presence when he is no longer around as a mortal man.  He declares: “he who accepts anyone I send accepts me, and in accepting me accepts him who sent me.” Jesus is saying that we accept him whenever we accept those God sends us. How accepting are we of others?  Before we say that we accept Jesus Christ – weigh your words carefully – and be sure you understand what you are saying – and all that it implies. 

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Reflections April 25

2018-04-08T20:39:14-05:00April 25th, 2018|Reflections|

Feast of St. Mark 

Mark: 16:15-20 

“They went forth and preached everywhere while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the word through accompanying signs.” Thomas Merton insisted: “No one enters heaven all by herself/himself.” We reach God through a community, through one another. Yes, we are all called individually, we are loved as persons. Nevertheless, Karl Rahner put it startlingly: “unique individuals as we are, we are loved by God only because we belong to all others and because they belong to us.” 

 

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Reflections April 24

2018-04-08T20:37:56-05:00April 24th, 2018|Reflections|

Feast of St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen 

John 10:22-30 

Jesus met increasing resistance from certain religious leaders of his day as the radical nature of his mission and message became clearer. Even the crowds began to voice their doubts about the identity of Jesus. Many had dared hope he was the Messiah but he had never explicitly claimed that title for himself. “If you did not understand my words, how could you not have understood my actions? Everything that I have done bears witness to the power of God that dwells in me and works through me!” 

The challenge to us is quite clear – do our actions speak to the world that we believe in Jesus Christ? Where are we on this journey in being “other Christs?” 

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Thoughts on Secular Institutes

2018-04-17T11:54:15-05:00April 23rd, 2018|Uncategorized|

Have you heard much about this group in the Catholic Church called Secular Institutes? I hadn’t heard of them 40 years ago as I was looking for my life’s vocation. I hope to share a bit every Monday.

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Reflections April 23

2018-04-08T20:34:27-05:00April 23rd, 2018|Reflections|

Feast of S. George 

John 10:1-10 

At times shepherds would have to stay the night in the grazing pastures, they would use a stone corral without a gate. After herding the sheep into it for safety, the shepherd would become the gate by lying down in the opening. In that way the sheep would not wander out, and the wolves would be frightened away by the shepherd’s presence. And as Jesus watched these shepherds at work, it occurred to him that this is how he would want to be remembered. He would love and protect those who followed him. He would want it to be a very personal relationship. He noticed that the shepherds knew their sheep individually and the sheep knew the shepherd’s voice. 

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Reflections April 22

2018-04-08T20:32:04-05:00April 22nd, 2018|Reflections|

Fourth Sunday of Easter 

John 10:11-18 

In today’s gospel we hear Jesus describe himself not only as a shepherd but also as a “good” shepherd. And he proceeds to tell a story about different kinds of shepherds. The difference between the two is at the point of crisis. The greatness of life lies in the realm above and beyond the call of duty. It all happens in that second mile. Jesus is remembered today as the good shepherd simply because he voluntarily took on himself that which no one could possibly have demanded. Where do we fit in this story? 

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