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Lazarus and the Rich Man

Pastor’s Column 26th Sunday Ordinary Time September 25, 2016 This Sunday we read one of the more disturbing passages of the New Testament (Luke 16:19-31), a parable of a rich man and a poor one. The rich man has traditionally been called “Dives” (Latin for “rich”); the poor man’s name is given to us--Lazarus. Look at this description of Lazarus! He is covered with sores… so he would have been smelly, messy, and ugly. Most people would be afraid to go near him. He has only street dogs for company. He is a beggar. People of that era would have thought him a great sinner, since he had to suffer so much, but how wrong this judgment is! Then Lazarus dies and goes to judgment. Now let’s tak

Working for What Endures

Pastor’s Column 25th Sunday Ordinary Time September 18, 2016 “The person who is trustworthy in very small matters is also trustworthy in great ones; and the person who is dishonest in very small matters is also dishonest in great ones.” from Luke 16:1-13 Christ reminds us in this Sunday’s gospel (Luke 16:1-13) that one day our money will fail us, and that we should invest it wisely and spiritually before it does come to an end. Money is something everyone needs, and a commodity almost no one has enough of. Yet it cannot actually buy us anything that really lasts, much less eternal life! I once read something that has stuck with me over the years, and it went something like this: “If you h

The Woman Who Lost Her Coins

Pastor’s Column 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time September 11, 2016 “What woman having ten coins and losing one would not light a lamp and sweep the house, searching carefully until she finds it?” Luke 15:1-2 Perhaps we might relate to this parable of the lost coins a bit more readily if this woman were frantically in search of her missing car keys or cell phone! Who hasn’t been in that situation? She is determined to find her lost coin! We can imagine her turning over every seat cushion in the house and even looking under the mattress, but she was going to get her money back. Am I as diligent as this in pursuing the Lord and his will? Jesus uses this parable to indicate just how much he wil

Weapons for Spiritual Battles

Pastor’s Column 23rd Sunday Ordinary Time September 4, 2016 In this Sunday’s gospel, Jesus warns us that before we engage the enemy (the evil one, our sins, the world) in battle or set out on our God-given mission in life, we had better be sure we have the resources to win; otherwise, we might as well surrender in advance, because our foe is not mere flesh and blood but the forces of darkness that lie unseen (Luke 14:25-33). The Lord goes so far as to say that we must give up all our possessions. What does he mean? Jesus makes it clear that in order to see the battles of life for what they really are, and to win them, we need more than our own earthly resources. We need HIS weapons at our d

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