Posts Tagged With: Lent

Clearing Away the Junk in Our Interior Castles

HOMILY

Preached at Holy Sepulcher Parish on March 14, 2016 at 7:00PM Penance Service

Happy first day of Lent!  Today actually is the first day of Lent… for Orthodox Christians, who celebrate Easter on a different day than we do, this year May 1.  They do not have Ash Wednesday, they start their Lent with what is known as Clean Monday, and it is a national holiday in Greece.  This first day of Lent, this Clean Monday, is reserved for two things: 1) Clean your home, to clean your castle so to speak.  The idea of spring cleaning can be traced back to this Orthodox tradition of Clean Monday.  2) Go to confession, to clean your interior castle so to speak.  In this way the faithful begin their Lent renewed in Christian love, mercy, and forgiveness.

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Time for a U-Turn

HOMILY

Preached at Holy Sepulcher Parish on February 27 and 28, 2016 on the Third Sunday of Lent (Year C) at the 4:00PM (Vigil), 8:00AM, and 10:30AM Masses

A hiker was resting along a narrow and steep mountain pass when he sees a truck driving backwards up the mountain.  He flags the truck down and asks the men inside, “Why are you guys driving backwards?”  “Because we don’t think there’s a place to make a U-turn at the top of the mountain,” the driver replied.  About an hour later the hiker sees the same truck coming back down the mountain, still driving backwards.  He flags the truck down again and asks the men inside, “Why are you guys still driving backwards?”  And the disgusted driver replied, “Turns out, there was a place to make a U-turn up there.”

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Our Priceless Relationship with Jesus

HOMILY

Preached at Holy Sepulcher Parish on March 24, 2015 at 7:00PM Penance Service

I was at the gas station one day and a man came up to me and gave me a one million dollar bill. It’s not real of course, but it looks real. It even has serial numbers and Grover Cleveland on it. I framed it not only because it looks so real, but so that I can always remember my encounter with the man who gave it to me.

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There Are Many Laws, But One Truth

HOMILY

Preached at Holy Sepulcher Parish on March 8, 2015 at the 8:00AM and 10:30AM Masses

The current federal laws fill 52 leather-bound volumes, and two new volumes have yet to be printed. There are an estimated five thousand different crimes that can be committed if these laws are broken. That doesn’t even include state or local laws. For example, I cannot own chickens because Richland Township requires you to have at least 2 acres of land to have them. There are so many laws, and yet their numbers are growing all the time. A coworker was pulled over by the police this past week because they had only cleared enough ice and snow from their windshield to make just a very small hole, but they did not receive a ticket because there is no law about requiring you to have clean windows to drive. Thankfully a couple of days ago, a bill requiring people to clear off their vehicles of ice and snow before driving them was put together. There are so many laws to make sure that we do the right thing, and so often we are not doing the right thing.

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After the Ashes Are Washed Away

HOMILY

Preached at Holy Sepulcher Parish on February 18, 2015 on Ash Wednesday at the 5:00PM Liturgy of the Word Service

After Mass this morning a woman told me that a girl from the school was in the restroom attempting to make the cross on her forehead as big as the cross her classmate had on her forehead. “Your cross is so nice and big and mine is so little,” the girl said. So she decided that the best thing to do would be to use water to help make the cross bigger, but all she succeeded to do was to wash it off.

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St. Joseph, the Perfect Guide for Our Lenten Journey

HOMILY

Preached at St. Catherine of Sweden Parish on March 19, 2014 on the Feast of St. Joseph at the 7:00PM Mass

I should probably say to everyone here tonight, “Merry Christmas!” After the winter that we have had this year it certainly still seems appropriate. Today’s gospel reading also makes it seem like Christmas because it takes us back to the Nativity story of our Lord Jesus Christ. But it’s not Christmas, it’s Lent. We can tell because there is no joy and so many people are sad. During Lent many of us punish ourselves by giving up things that make us happy and that can certainly make us sad. I love lots of sugar, especially in my tea, and one year I gave it up for Lent and I was miserable. Lent seemed like it was forty weeks long that year! I couldn’t wait for Lent to be over. I’ll never do that again! Also during Lent we do serious religious things like participating in the Stations of the Cross or attending Mass on Wednesday nights, things we normally don’t do the rest of the year, when we could be at home relaxing watching Survivor, American Idol, or Duck Dynasty.

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