Happy Birthday, St. Juliana

Dear Parishioners,

If you could ask God any question, what would you ask him? Why is there war? Why did my husband die so young? Why did Jesus not make life, and especially the faith, less complicated? Why do I have this debility? Why am I a Bears fan? Maybe those last two are related.

Jesus says in the Gospel on this 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time, “nothing is concealed that will not be revealed, nor secret that will not be known” (Matt 10:26). We will ultimately receive the answers to these questions when we are with God in heaven. But it's still worth asking them now, and reflecting on the very nature of the inquiry.

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The Heart is Alive

This painting is one of my favorite depictions of both the crucifixion and the Sacred Heart of Jesus. I'm afraid I do not know the artist, nor the date it was painted. I came across the canvas in a small chapel in an Italian town in the mountains about a half hour outside of Rome, called Rocca di Papa. (The town is actually where the Pope has a summer residence.) It was about six years ago and I was a seminarian at the Pontifical North American College in Rome. I was so struck by the image that I pulled out my phone and captured a shot.

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Happy Father's Day!

Dear Parishioners,

We are completing this weekend the "quadfecta" of Sunday Feasts: Ascension, Pentecost, Holy Trinity, and now Corpus Christi. Today, the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, we focus on the Eucharist. The crucial passage from John 6, which is our Gospel today, lays out the concept of the real presence. “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him” (Jn 6:56). Saint Paul is fairly explicit as well: “The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ? The bread that we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ?” (1 Cor 10:16).

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Adrift But Not Lost

Acts of the Apostles chapter 27 recounts the naval voyage of St. Paul to Rome. Paul was a prisoner in Jerusalem and, being a Roman citizen, was transferred to the capital for trial. During the voyage his ship encountered a severe storm. Badly damaged and having drifted out to sea, way off course, the crew was despondent. The captain and sailors had lost hope and were refusing to eat. All was lost. Then Paul, the least of the apostles, took charge. Standing up in chains, he exhorted the men. “I urge you, therefore, to take some food; it will help you survive. Not a hair of the head of anyone of you will be lost” (Acts 27: 34-35).

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Father, Son and Holy Spirit

Dear Parishioners,

We celebrate the Feast of the Most Holy Trinity. We believe in a Triune God: three persons all co-equal as God. Though ‘three is one’ appears illogical, the Trinity can be reasoned out…somewhat. Instead of providing the theological rational of how Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are all one God and not three Gods, what I’d like to do here is propose more of a ‘what if’ scenario.

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Deacon Robinson Ortiz

My name is Robinson Ortiz, I’m 26 years old, and I was born in Colombia. I finished my philosophy studies in the Seminary of Bogota and then taught in a high school for a year. In 2013, I came to Chicago to study English at UIC and in August 2014, I joined Mundelein Seminary. During my time in the seminary, I have been assigned to Holy Name Cathedral, St. Dismas Parish in Waukegan, and St. Damian Parish in Oak Forest. I also did my Clinical Pastoral Education at Tampa General Hospital for 11 weeks last Summer. My classmates and I went to a 9-week pilgrimage in the Holy Land this year where we visited the holy sites and had Scriptural and Ecumenical classes.

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