5th Sunday of Lent
This weekend one of my deacons, Deacon Brian McCaffrey, preaches the homily. During this unique time of COVID-19, I have decided to record and upload my deacons' homilies onto my website and podcast as well. While nobody is able to see us preach in person, I pray that being able to at least hear the homily will help us feel connected in these very unique times of "Safer at Home" which Wisconsin has instituted.
This weekend Deacon Brian considers the sin of anger, how it often goes unnoticed as sinful, how it takes root in our lives, how we give into and feed it, and how it prevents us from being the person God is calling us to be. Like Lazarus in the Gospel who, after coming out of the tomb, Jesus orders to be unbound from his burial cloths, God desires to untie us from the sin of anger in the ways that it still binds us. When we give unrepented anger over to the Lord, the power of the Son can transform us into something spiritually new and incredible!
4th Sunday of Lent
We are certainly in a unique and unprecedented time in our country (and world) with this response to COVID-19. In the Gospel today Jesus opens the eyes of a man born blind. He smears a muddy mixture of saliva and dirt on the man's eyes - not a clean or comfortable experience - then asks the man to go wash in the Pool of Siloam. The man does...and is healed! This time of COVID-19 and our nation's response is an experience of a muddy mixture being smeared in our eyes and into our lives - it's neither pleasant nor comfortable. But Jesus invites us in this time, like He did the blind man, to go wash in the Pool of Siloam - trying new and different ways of prayer and service and learning to unite to God in this unique time. If we don't, this will all just be a muddy experience. But if we do, this mud might also become an opportunity for incredible spiritual power in our lives!
2nd Sunday of Lent
Temptations come from 3 main sources: the world, the flesh, and the devil. Movements of God within us start with a thought, and temptations also start with a thought. As these various thoughts and reasonings fill our mind, we eventually come to a fork in the road - we have to decide which thoughts to hold onto, and which thoughts to set aside...it's not as easy as it sounds. Those thoughts of temptation are so subtle, and so mischievous, they'll do whatever they can to draw us away from the one thing God is calling us to in that moment. They'll even tempt us with good things, actions and thoughts that are noble and virtuous, so long as those actions and thoughts are NOT what God is asking of us in that moment. God calls us, His children, to an incredible glory, prefigured in Jesus' transfiguration that we hear of in today's Gospel. This week: how will we resist the temptations that come our way, and resolutely follow the impulses of God within our hearts? One path leads to glory, the other to fleeting pleasure followed by lasting emptiness. Which thoughts will we decide to hold onto this week, and which ones will we decide to throw away?
1st Sunday of Lent
Our readings today present us the with tale of 2 men: The 1st man - Adam - and the New Adam - Jesus Christ. Both are tempted by the serpent. The Old Adam falls and turns away from the Father; the New Adam stands strong in faithfulness to His Father. This Lent is a journey into the desert with Jesus. It will be a time of testing and temptation for us just as it was for Him. In the face of the temptations to come, will we be like the Old Adam, or the New Adam?