Steve’s Columns

33rd Sunday in Ordinary Tim – 17 November 2019

“Lo, the day is coming, blazing like an oven, when all the proud and all evildoers will be stubble…   But for you who fear my name, there will arise the sun of justice with its healing rays.” (Mal 3:19-20a)      Advent arrives just two Sundays from today.  While it is still too soon to display images of the Nativity of Jesus, it is not too soon to begin anticipating our display.  In fact our liturgical anticipation of the arrival of Christ goes into high gear during these last few Sundays before Advent.  For instance, our scriptural quotation taken from today’s first …

32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time – 10 November 2019

Finally, brothers and sisters, pray for us, so that the word of the Lord may speed forward and be glorified, as it did among you, and that we may be delivered from perverse and wicked people, for not all have faith. (2 Thes 3:1-2) The New Evangelization is risky business. We the Church living in modern times are asked to bring modern man into the Church by engaging modernity. Direct engagement by the Church is nothing new. It has been the evangelical approach of the Church ever since the missionary activities of Ss. Peter and Paul. The peril of engagement however …

31st Sunday in Ordinary Time – 3 November 2019

 “For you love all things that are and loathe nothing that you have made; for what you hated, you would not have fashioned.” (Wis 11:24) You have often heard it mentioned from the parish pulpit, and these bulletin pages, that the three transcendental properties that subsist in all created things are beauty, truth, and goodness.  All created things have these inherent properties as they reflect the Creator, who when beheld, is all Beautiful, True and Good.  Today, with the prompting of our quotation above taken from this Sunday’s first reading, we will focus on goodness. The notion of goodness eludes …

30th Sunday in Ordinary Time – 27 October 2019

Beloved: I am already being poured out like a libation, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith. (2 Tim 4:6-7) It is quite fortuitous (and fortunate) that just as we received last week the final instruction in our adult education series on St. Paul by examining his 2nd Letter to Timothy, we read from this same letter this Sunday at Holy Mass. It is also fitting to read from this letter just before Advent which is the opening of a new liturgical year. For …

29th Sunday in Ordinary Time – 20 October 2019

As long as Moses kept his hands raised up, Israel had the better of the fight, but when he let his hands rest, Amalek had the better of the fight. Moses’ hands, however, grew tired; so Aaron and Hur supported his hands… so that his hands remained steady till sunset.” (Ex 17:11-12) Which one of us even at a young age could all the day long keep his hands raised above his head?  God certainly gave Moses divine authority to secure victory over Amalek; however Moses still needed to rely on his natural strength to keep his hands raised during …

28th Sunday in Ordinary Time – 13 October 2019

Jesus said in reply, “Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?” Then he said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith has saved you.” (Luke 17: 17-19) In today’s gospel reading Jesus descends from Capernaum toward Jerusalem traveling south through Galilee and Samaria. Jesus is called upon from a distance by ten people with leprosy asking Him to pity them. Jesus does not call back saying to them that they will be healed; He says only “Go show yourselves to the priests”. Mosaic Law …

27th Sunday in Ordinary Time – 6 October 2019

The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.” The Lord replied… “When you have done all you have been commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do.’” (Luke 17: 5-6; 10) A servant in ancient times owned no property and was not free in the way we understand freedom today.  The servant attached to an estate or household was wholly dependent upon his master who owned property.  In the evolving feudal system property was paramount; it was the large country estate that fed the economic system. Before the factory worker, there was …

26th Sunday in Ordinary Time – 29 September 2019

Thus says the LORD the God of hosts: Woe to the complacent in Zion! Lying upon beds of ivory, stretched comfortably on their couches (Amos 6:1; 4) With Mass attendance suffering, parishes closing, and Catholic belief in doctrine such as the Real Presence of Jesus in the Holy Eucharist dropping off, we must admit that besides a damaging wave of secularism there has been a red tide of complacency in the Church that has brought us to this state.  True, we face challenges as great as in any pagan era; however we also bear the blame of being too slow to respond to …

25th Sunday in Ordinary Time – 22 September 2019

“Beloved… I ask that supplications, prayers, petitions, and thanksgivings be offered for everyone, for kings and for all in authority, that we may lead a quiet and tranquil life in all devotion and dignity.” (1 Tim 2:1-2) It is not possible live heaven on earth. There are too many solicitors to sin such as the devil, our flesh, and of course the world itself. When the devil isn’t sowing sin in the heart and strife in society and our flesh isn’t leading us toward fear and doubt, the world is busy prodding us to takes sides against each other. Sinister …

24th Sunday in Ordinary Time – 15 September 2019

“Beloved: I am grateful to him who has strengthened me, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he considered me trustworthy in appointing me to the ministry. I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and arrogant, but I have been mercifully treated…” (1 Tim 1:12-13) In the month of October our parish will present a Pauline study on grace. This will coincide with the introduction of the theme for our year of faithful inquiry entitled “Your Grace is Enough for Me, O Lord” which is a paraphrase taken from 2 Corinthians 12:9. Even before this formal announcement, this theme had already …

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