Steve’s Columns

The Most Holy Trinity – 7 June 2020

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with all of you. (2 Cor 13: 13)  It is quite possible that in spending so much time trying to understand the mysteries of our faith by studying the more difficult passages of the Bible that we overlook the simple passages that propound the mysteries of our faith with far less difficulty.  We see this with the last sentence of today’s second reading taken from the very last sentence of the last chapter of Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians …

Pentecost Sunday – 31 May 2002

When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together… Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4) This year Pentecost Sunday falls on the last day of May, the day we conclude our traditional month-long devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is therefore a fortuitous invitation to reflect on the Blessed Mother during this solemn feast especially since our salvation began when the Holy Spirit came upon the Virgin Mary at …

7th Sunday of Easter – 24 May 2020

After Jesus had been taken up to heaven the apostles… entered [Jerusalem]… they went to the upper room where they were staying.  All these devoted themselves with one accord to prayer, together with some women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and his brothers. (Acts 1: 12-14) Many years before St. Luke referred to Mary as “the mother of Jesus” in his Acts of the Apostles, Mary prophesied (during her visitation to her cousin Elizabeth) that “all generations” (or ages) would call her “blessed” (Lk 1:48).  In fact, St. Elizabeth filled with the Holy Spirit (Lk 1:41) weaves this wonderful …

6th Sunday of Easter – 17 May 2020

Jesus said to his disciples: “… I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always, the Spirit of truth… he remains with you, and will be in you. I will not leave you orphans…” (Jn 14: 16-18) During the years of Jesus’ public ministry on earth, his companions, the twelve Apostles, could not have had a greater advocate. When St. John the Apostle closes his gospel narrative by declaring that there are not enough pages in the world to record all the amazing things that Jesus accomplished on earth (Jn 21:25), we …

5th Sunday of Easter – 10 May 2020

So the Twelve called together the community of the disciples and said, “It is not right for us to neglect the word of God to serve at table.  Brothers, select from among you seven reputable men, filled with the Spirit and wisdom, whom we shall appoint to this task…” (Acts 6:2-3)  In reading our scriptural quotation above from Sunday Mass one might think that the Apostles had forgotten Christ’s command at the Last Supper to serve humbly (Jn 13:14); for when approached by their flock to settle a dispute over the distribution of charity to widows, the Twelve seem to shun …

4th Sunday of Easter – 3 May 2020

When he was insulted, he returned no insult; when he suffered, he did not threaten; instead, he handed himself over to the one who judges justly. (1 Pt 2:23) Today’s first reading presents an extremely profound statement that would be quite at home in any book of proverbs: If you are patient when you suffer for doing what is good, this is a grace before God. First of all, this sentence is a conditional. St. Peter is telling us that it is only a grace before God if or under the strict condition that one suffers patiently for doing what is …

3rd Sunday of Easter – 26 April 2020

“Jesus the Nazarene was a man commended to you by God with mighty deeds, wonders, and signs… as you yourselves know. This man, delivered up by the set plan and foreknowledge of God, you killed, using lawless men to crucify him”. (Acts 2:22-23) Today our first reading at Holy Mass comes from St. Peter’s proclamation to the Jews following the graceful event of Pentecost.  Peter had just received the grace of fortitude and so he boldly asserts in public for the first time that Jesus is the Savior of the world. One can only wonder what Peter was thinking when …

Divine Mercy Sunday – 19 April 2020

As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained.” (Jn 20:21-23) All Christians should be amazed that on the evening of the same day that He rose from the dead, Jesus visited the Apostles and gave them the express authority to forgive sins through His gift of the Holy Spirit.  Jesus had already appeared to Mary Magdalene in the morning (Jn 20:13-15). Later in the day he …

Easter Sunday – 12 April 2020

Brothers and sisters: If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. (Col 3:1-2) On this Easter Sunday let us be raised with Christ toward the hope of heaven and all its glorious expectations and joys.  We should follow today the good and faithful counsel of Saint Paul in his Letter to the Colossians, “Think of what is above, not of what is on earth”. We should acknowledge that when we read from Sacred Scripture in the …

Palm Sunday – 5 April 2020

The Lord GOD is my help, therefore I am not disgraced; I have set my face like flint, knowing that I shall not be put to shame. (Is 50:7)    “Death, comes for us all, even for kings he comes”.  These are the words of St. Thomas More in Robert Bolt’s screenplay, A Man for All Seasons.  More speaks these words as he is tried for high treason in July of 1535 for refusing to take the Oath of Supremacy which for one thing bound its takers to recognize the king as overseer of the church in England. Thomas More …

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