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Get into the ring! How this works...

This is easy! Each week on Thursday I post my homily 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!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

September 6 Homily Prep

-Last Sunday's homily is available by email request
-This Sunday's Scriptures can be found at
-check out this weeks LinC letter at
-I will be celebrating mass this weekend at 8:00am on Sunday

Are we interested in the powerful and real God that Jesus offers us? Or, only in the miraculous and powerful works Jesus does for us?

 I will confess, even as a very young child, to being very interested in and attacted to the TV evangelist  Ernest Angely, or for that matter Benny Hine, and even Oral Roberts.  What attracted me most were the miraculous healing services. I loved it. I'm not sure I believed any of it - but I loved watching these miracle services. I was certainly interested in their typical by-line "Gaaaawd has a miracooool for YOUUUUU!"

Ernest Angely was the best, though, as he withdrew his hand from the afflicted spot on each person's body he'd say "in the name of JEEEEEzus"...I loved it.

People flock in the thousands to such miraculous healers - as to Jesus in the gospel text today. What we have discovered however and we will hear explicitly from Jesus in next Sunday's gospel - Jesus did not come to miraculously heal the sick and raise the dead. Jesus came, rather, to reveal and extend the perpetually present and life-saving love of God.  Jesus came to heal and cure the affliction called "death" so that earthly dying would no longer command us - but instead eternal life might begin in us today.

Wow.  Jesuit Father John Foley writes

"Jesus moves toward the events that will show God’s solidarity with us in our suffering, our rejections, and in that famous event which each and every one of us will face sooner or later: dying. Beyond cures, which are wonderful yet partial, God gives us companionship within each instant of our life.

This Sunday at Mass, let us ask ourselves whether the intimate presence of God is part of what we desire in our own lives. Do we know that Christ is deeply involved with us? Do we let his love flow into us and through us to others, or must it fight its way around us?"


Tom Sawyer said...

God certainly can work miracles yet the greatest miracle is the transformation of one's heart from sinner into sanctified believer. It is a change the is the most powerful yet the hardest to convey to those who do not believe. Although I have experienced many of God's coincidences as well as visible miracles it is the intense love that dwells in my heart that provides the greatest feeling. The Lord Jesus dwelling in the Eucharist and in me allows me a relationship is exceeds all physical experiences. Those who do not believe find ways to explain away even the most sound scientific evidence of God's power but when their heart is changed they understand the beauty of Christ. It is the church which must proclaim this Grace by witness and communion of believers.

Monica's protégé said...

The message in this reflection is the great antidote to despair. I just had a conversation this morning with someone who is in a very messy, complicated situation. He is bitter towards another - and while I can well understand how this bitterness has grown within him, I can also see that if he could grab hold of this very message given here by the Matador, his peace of mind could be renewed - or at least, improved! Is it possible that no darkness is so dark that the light of God can't be found? I believe that it is true. God is always there - ready to give companionship - ready to begin eternal life within us in every instance of earthly life.

JoyFuralle said...

LOVE your direction! The Lord HAS wowwed me in HUGE & wonderful ways. Bigger displays of power & circumstances than the biggest of fireworks displays! Events in my life as big as the parting of the Red Sea. And then I recall a homily years ago where you said, do we love the Lord's gifts MORE than the Lord? Hmm, that questioning was really good in a squirmy, uncomfortable way... My ears were opened! If I NEVER had an experience of the Lord, would I continue to love the Lord, give my all to Love, Do I love the gifts more than the Giver? Squirm, ouch, squirm... In reflecting, looking, I realize how many subtle things I was missing cuz of my JEEEEE-Zus experiences.

I was missing how the Lord works/lives through me -- and others -- in the subtlest of ways. Seeing these things, sharing them, sometimes verbally, sometimes not, allowed me to see & hear & respond more fully to Life, to Love, to give more fully of myself to the Lord who lives & moves & works in me! The color of the sky, the caress of the wind, the softness of grass underfoot, the wonder (and craziness!) of people as varied as a painter's palette ... He made the deaf ME hear & the dumb ME speak, & I know the Lord will continue that good work whether I know it or not... As Mertons's famous Thoughts in Solitude speaks so well.

The Matador said...

Powerful reactions. Great!