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Showing posts from April, 2014

3rd Sunday of Easter 2014

Easter is about revelation! On Easter Sunday we revealed that the tomb was found empty. Last week Jesus revealed himself to the Apostles in the upper room, reminding us that “Blessed are those who have not seen, but still believe.” This Third Sunday of Easter, Jesus is revealed through the breaking of the Bread.

The Word for the 3rd Sunday of Easter
Acts 2:14, 22-33
Psalm 16:2, 5, 7-11
1 Peter 1:17-21
Luke 24:13-35

In our first reading from Acts of the Apostles we have Peter standing before all of Jerusalem giving witness to who Jesus was and what happened there. Not only is this meant to remind those who witnessed these events, but it provides those of us who were not there (and Luke’s primarily Gentile audience) the understanding that this messiah was in fact killed by his own people, but through that act it was also their greatest king, David, and the many other prophets who followed, who prophesied his coming.  Our Psalm takes up this theme, reminding us that the Lord will show us the r…

2nd Sunday of Easter 2014

He is risen, Alleluia, Alleluia!  Easter is not over… it has only just begun!  While some folks might be ready to pack up the Easter decorations, many of us know that the party is just getting started!  Easter is not just one day, but an entire 50 day season!  Having traveled through the 40 days of Lent reflecting on the story of our salvation, the focus of our readings now turn to the story of the birth of our Church.

The Word for the 2nd Sunday of Easter (Divine Mercy Sunday)
Acts 2:42-47
Psalm 118:2-4, 13-15, 22-24
1 Peter 1:3-9
John 20:19-31

For the Season of Easter, our first reading during Mass, instead of being from the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament), we read from The Acts of the Apostles.  Why the change?  Because it is in this book we get the sequel to the “Greatest Story Ever Told.”  After Luke completed his Gospel, he soon came to realize that this was not the end of the story, but a beginning… the beginning of the Church.  And like every audience that falls in love with a gre…

Easter Sunday 2014

The Word for Easter Sunday
Acts 10:34a, 37-43
Psalm 118:1-2, 16-17, 22-23
Colossians 3:1-4, OR 1 Corinthians 5:6b-8
John 20:1-9

If you were a person who only attended Mass on Easter Sunday, your exposure to the whole Story of Salvation would be limited to just these four passages used every Easter Sunday.  If someone were to attend Mass every week, they would find themselves exposed to over 600 different passages from Scripture.  If they were to do this for only one year they would get at least 200 different passages.  My point is, our beloved "Easter Catholics" are only getting a very small part of the story.... yes, a very important part, but it's like eating only one hors d'oeuvre at a banquet... it gives you a foretaste of the great food to come, but could hardly be considered nutritious or filling.

Unpacking the readings for this Sunday, like we do every week in the RCIA, gives me the same problem.  I can't really give you a sense of the importance of these readin…

Palm Sunday 2014

During  our celebration of Palm Sunday there is no other time in the Liturgical Cycle where the readings wreak such havoc on our emotions, where we are taken from a growing state of pure joy to utter despair within the course of just one Mass. For weeks now we’ve been celebrating Jesus’ triumphs… gaining new followers in Samaria with the woman at the well, curing the man born blind, and last week, raising Lazarus from the dead. With joy and revelry the people welcome Jesus into Jerusalem cheering and waving palms, but the dark undercurrents that have been following us all along are now coming to fruition…

The Word for Palm Sunday
Matthew 21:1-11
Isaiah 50:4-7
Psalm 22:8-9, 17-18, 19-20, 23-24
Philippians 2:6-11
Matthew 26:14-27:66

We begin our Mass outside in front of the church as we relive the moment of Jesus’ triumphal entry into the City of Jerusalem. With our opening reading from the Gospel of Matthew, we see Jesus has planned for everything as the people cheer in welcome for this…

5th Sunday of Lent 2014

We are now deep into our Lenten observance as we approach enter the 5th week of Lent. During this cycle the readings, typically used for the RCIA, are meant to reveal to us that Jesus is the Christ, the chosen one to reconcile us to the Father. Two weeks ago we focused on having faith in God and the symbolism of water. Last week we focused on redemption and the symbols of anointing and light.  This week – the final week before Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion – our focus is on restoration, vividly depicted through the resurrection of Lazarus, while giving us a foretaste of what is to come…

The Word for the 5th Sunday of Lent
Ezekiel 37:12-14
Psalm 130:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8
Romans 8:8-11
John 11:1-45

We open with a reading from the prophet Ezekiel.  While not often read during the Liturgical cycle, Ezekiel is considered one of the major prophets, and his message is as unique as his calling.  Ezekiel, having been born into the priestly class, received his call to prophecy 10 years into the Baby…