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29 Jul

Jesus and the Father Are One

Dear Parishioners,

Poor Philip.  He must have felt like Jesus was picking on him.  Why couldn't Jesus have looked to someone, anyone else for this dilemma?  Why was Philip singled out? 

"When Jesus raised his eyes and saw that a large crowd was coming to him, he said to Philip, 'Where can we buy enough food for them to eat?' He said this to test him, because he himself knew what he was going to do" (Jn 6:5-6).

22 Jul

Please Pray for Priests, the Good Shepherds

Dear Parishioners,

Jeremiah was a prophet in Ancient Israel when Babylon destroyed Israel.  He was a shepherd trying to help his confused flock.  Unfortunately, there were fake shepherds competing with him: bad influences who led the people astray.  "Woe to the shepherds who mislead and scatter the flock of my pasture" (Jer 23:1).

When Jesus Christ came around 600 years later, there were no shepherds, good or bad.  "When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them, for they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things" (Mk 6:34).

Are there shepherds 2000 years later?  Yes.  They are the Catholic priests. 

15 Jul

The Twelve Apostles

Dear Parishioners,

 

The Twelve must have felt a mix of fear and exhilaration.  Here they are, relatively new to Jesus and his mission, sent out to preach repentance, drive out demons, and anoint those who were sick (cf. Mark 6: 7-13). This is quite a tall order.  It would be difficult for someone who knew the faith inside and out and had a great experience of ministry from which to draw.  Yet the apostles barely know Christ and are still very uninformed about his message.  We can be certain the apostles were nervous, to say the least.  Would they be able to answer questions?  Would they know what they were doing?  Would they make mistakes?

 

08 Jul

Doing Good Can Be A Fight

Dear Parishioners,

Things weren't always easy for Jesus.  We know this.  We are familiar with all of our Lord's struggles in the Gospel, culminating in his crucifixion. The Pharisees argued with him, the crowds tried to stone him and throw him off a cliff, his apostles didn't understand him and left and betrayed him, his family thought he was out of his mind, and his hometown rejected him.  This last one is from our Gospel this Sunday (cf. Mk 6:1-6).  "Jesus said to them, 'A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and among his own kin and in his own house'."

Doing good can be a fight.  We live in a fallen world.  The world resists goodness.

01 Jul

Why God, why?

Dear Parishioners,

“God did not make death, nor does he rejoice in the destruction of the living” (Wis 1:13). Read that line again from our first reading. God did not make death. Death and suffering and evil are not from God.

This is such a crucial understanding. There is death and suffering and evil in the world. We can be tempted to blame God for this and reject him. Why did God give my loved one cancer? Why did God cause these hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, forest fires, etc? Why doesn't God do something about these school shootings?

The problem of reconciling evil with God's existence has been around forever. We are not new in trying to grapple with it. In fact, it's so common to muse on the problem that the issue has a name. It's called theodicy. Theodicy is trying to figure out how evil in the world fits in with God.

Has a bright beam of sunlight ever drawn your eye to our stained glass windows, and you found yourself wondering what story they tell? They really do tell a story; we share it with our virtual tour.

Church Windows