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The Unlikely King

Pastor’s Column Solemnity of Christ the King November 24, 2019 “If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!” from Luke 23:35-43 Why does Jesus appear to be so vulnerable, so powerless on the cross? Why is he willing to put up with so much abuse from ignorant people? Of course, as God, Jesus is not in and of himself vulnerable; but being also fully human he has made himself vulnerable for us. Of course, he can come down off that cross; of course, he can save himself. He doesn't need to be saved; rather, he has made himself vulnerable for a purpose so that I will have faith in him, so that I will love him. What is he waiting for? He is, waiting for my love, my act of faith. How frequen

How Can I Pray Always?

Pastor’s Column 33rd Sunday Ordinary Time November 17, 2019 Many of us are unfamiliar with a traditional Catholic way of prayer that can work very powerfully in our lives. A few weeks ago, we heard the parable of the tax collector whose only prayer was, ”Oh God, be merciful to me, a sinner.” The Lord was very pleased with this humble and effective prayer, and quite a few parishioners have shared with me that they have begun praying with this prayer that we call an invocation. These can be prayed almost anywhere. You can create your own as well. Father Gary My Lord and my God (this is often said at the consecration at Mass). O God, be merciful to me, a sinner. Jesus, Lord and Savior, I lov

Mercy Now or Justice Later

Pastor’s Column 32nd Sunday Ordinary Time November 10, 2019 “…but for those deemed worthy to attain a place to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage; They can no longer die, for they are like the angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones that will rise.” from Luke 20:27-38 This Sunday’s teaching by Jesus on the resurrection of the dead springs from something we all recognize: evil people often prosper, while the good frequently suffer innocently at the hands of evil people. Human history is full of terrible tyrants who seem to prosper with impunity on earth (for a while only), while literally getting away with mur

Christ Will Be Passing By

Pastor’s Column 31st Sunday in Ordinary Time November 3, 2019 You and I live in Jericho and Christ is passing by. Last week we heard about a lowly tax collector who prostrated himself on the ground. His only prayer was, O God, be merciful to me, a sinner. And we have another tax-collector again this Sunday (Luke 19:1-10). Our friend Zacchaeus has a lot of strikes against him. He is not a well-liked man in town—it goes with the job. He wants to get a glimpse of Jesus but the crowd is too thick. And the worst part of all – Zacchaeus is really SHORT. But for Zacchaeus being short is actually his greatest asset – he has to do something or he’s not going to see or hear anything … so he cli

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