-the homily from the baptism of the Lord is in the library ->
-the Scriptures for this Sunday are at USCCB.org ->
-I am presiding at the 5:30 Mass on Sat and the 8am Mass on Sunday.
There was a movie out a few years ago about an evangelical preacher who struggled with many personal and family demons called The Apostle. If that movie is an indication of what our society thinks an apostle is then its no wonder faith and participation in the church are dwindling.
This last week I had the privilege to offer a retreat for six young men about to be ordained priests. We spent a great deal of time reflecting upon things "apostolic". While the first definition of the word is "one sent", the deeper meaning is "the one who bears the presence of another" - maybe ambassador. The apostle or ambassador must be emptied of his own "baggage", his own credentials, if you will, and transparently make present or bear that of the one who sends him.
That is St. Paul. That is Israel in our first reading. That is the priesthood of the Church. That is your life baptized in Christ Jesus: to set aside yourself and make room for the one you bear to the world.
Does your Christian character bear the image of Christ crucified and risen? Do they see no longer you but him whom you bear? The world needs to see him in us. God's purpose for our lives is to bear His light and life to a darkened world dying from sinful self-aggrandizement.
Get into the ring! How this works...
This is easy! Each week on Thursday I post my homily idea...my main focus for preaching this coming Sunday. What I am hoping for is a reaction from people in the pews. Does my "focus" connect with your daily life, faith, and experience? Or not? Either affirm the direction I am going in (by giving me an example from your life) or challenge me, ask for clarification! Questions are the best! Reaction rather than reflection is what I'm looking for here. Don't be afraid, get in the ring. Ole!