The Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time at St William Church in Naples, FL – St Sebastian Church in Ft Lauderdale – MS Koningsdam

Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time January 29, 2017

Zephaniah 2, 3; 3, 12-13 + Psalm 146 + 1 Corinthians 1, 26-31 + Matthew 5, 1-12

Last Sunday, leading up to this reading today, we heard Jesus insist that his followers “repent.” In my preaching on that text, I was reminded that the word “repent” has been watered down in translation losing the power and the force of “metanoia” which the word Matthew uses in his original text. For most people, “repent” means to feel sorry and maybe try to do better. I do not think Jesus came from the glory of the Father to make us feel sorry. That idea trivializes his life and his death. He came for “metanoia” which means a lot more than feeling sorry and wanting to do better. … more »

Third Sunday in Ordinary Time at St Peter and St William Catholic Churches in Naples, FL

Isaiah 8, 23 – 9, 3 + Psalm 27 + 1 Corinthians 1, 10-13, 7 + Matthew 4, 12-23

January 22, 2017 at St Peter and St William Churches in Naples, FL

            The key to unlocking the message of this text and the discovery of what Jesus is doing and asking lies in that word “repent”, but there is a problem. That English word, “repent” lacks the strength or the power of what Jesus was asking for and expecting. The original word, metanoia carries with it a much greater force than “repent” which can be watered down to simply mean being sorry or correcting one’s ways. Jesus is not asking that. In fact, that almost trivializes his life and his message to think that he became flesh and died just to get us to be sorry for our sins and try to do better. … more »

Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

Second Sunday in Ordinary Time January 15, 2017 at St Peter and St William Churches in Naples, FL

Isaiah 49, 3, 5-6 + Psalm 40 + 1 Corinthians 1, 1-3 + John 1, 29-34

In some ways, it can be said the whole of John’s Gospel is an answer to the question, “Who is this Jesus?” The answer comes with a series of signs that begins at a wedding in Cana and concludes at a funeral in Bethany. This is a critical and essential question for every believer. If someone asks, “Who do you believe in?” or “Who is this Jesus you trust and adore?” “Who is this one who has drawn you to this place today?” You need an answer, your answer, not something from a book or something you heard someone else say. … more »

Epiphany at St Peter and St William Churches in Naples, FL

Epiphany of the Lord January 8, 2017

Isaiah 60, 1-6 + Psalm 72 + Ephesians 3, 2-6 + Matthew 2, 1-12

Hidden in this story that is so familiar to us there is a complete summary of the mission of Christ. It is like a preview of things to come. Listen to the final verses of Matthew’s Gospel and you can see what Matthew is giving us here. “When they saw him, they worshiped….. Then Jesus approached and said to them. ‘All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” The work of Christ extending salvation to all is previewed by the visit of these foreigners. … more »