Ash Wednesday at St Peter and St William Churches in Naples, FL

Ash Wednesday March 1, 2017

Joel 2, 12-18 + Psalm 51 + 2 Corinthians 5, 20; 6,2 + Matthew 6, 1-6, 16-18

St Peter and St William Churches in Naples, FL

From our very beginning we are dust touched by the loving hand of a Creating God.  We were filled with life and with hope by the Spirit of the God’s breath. But the King we welcomed with palms and glad Hosannas has been betrayed by our infidelity, fragile faith, and broken promises. So, we go back this day to that from which we came. There is a lot of dirt in all our lives the dirt of sin, the dirt of secrets, the dirt of lies and falsehood. … more »

The Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time at St Peter and St William Churches in Naples, FL

Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time February 26, 2017

Isaiah 49, 14-15 + Psalm 62 + 1 Corinthians 4, 1-5 + Matthew 6, 24-34

St Peter and St William Churches in Naples, FL

The times in which we live provide more than enough reason to worry and be anxious. Fear is being used by too many to manipulate and manage our thinking and our options. It is a handy weapon to silence opposition and easily leads to abuses of power. History is full of examples. To these times and to all our fears and worry speaks this Gospel. Worry threatens us all. It is a part of daily life; but this Gospel suggests that for people of faith it will not control our daily lives. … more »

The Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time at St William Church in Naples, FL

Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time February 19, 2017

Leviticus 19, 1-2, 17-18 + Psalm 103 – 1 Corinthians 3, 16-23 + Matthew 5, 38-48

St William Churches in Naples, FL

The examples Jesus uses today can preach this Gospel if we understand them correctly from the time and the culture in which they were spoken. If we fail to do that, we end up with some rather odd behavior that will not get make us holy or get us close to perfection. When it says “offer no resistance to injury” Jesus is not saying lay down and let anyone hurt you or take advantage of you. Jesus was never passive in the face of evil or wrong-doing. A better translation says: “Do not react with hostility to one who is evil.” That is an entirely different thing from not resisting evil. … more »

The Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time at St Peter and St William Churches in Naples, FL

Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time February 12, 2017

Sirach 15, 15-20 + Psalm 119 + 1 Corinthians 2, 6-10 + Matthew 5, 17-37

St Peter and St William Churches in Naples, FL

I believe it is true for all of us here willing to look back on our lives with some honesty and humor recognizing that when it came to rules and laws we pushed boundaries. I can remember a confrontation with my father over my first car which he did not want me to have. I suffered many depravations until I had saved enough money to buy the most ridiculous old jollibee which he then forbad me to park in the driveway because it leaked more oil than it burned gasoline. … more »

The Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time at St Peter Church in Naples, FL and onboard the MS Koningsdam

Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time February 5, 2017

Isaiah 58, 7-10 + Psalm 112 + 1 Corinthians 2, 1-5 + Matthew 5, 13-16

St Peter Church in Naples, FL – MS Koningsdam

Two weeks ago, when I was preparing for today’s homily, I was sitting at my kitchen table with a cup of coffee and the lectionary. As often happens to me at this stage of my life, I began to wonder how many times I have prayed, reflected, and preached these four verses that come immediately after the Beatitudes. It’s all part of the great Sermon on the Mount. I was gazing out the window, and when I looked back down at the table my eyes came to rest on the salt shaker. … more »