The Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

The Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

27 January 2019 at St. Peter & St. William Churches in Naples, Fl

Nehemiah 8, 2-10 + Psalm 19 + 1 Corinthians 12, 12-30 + Luke, 1, 1-4; 4, 14-21

I just love the dramatic way the church stops this reading right here. Next week we pick up with the following verse, and we know what happens when the people start grumbling about what he says, and Luke will tell us that they are “filled with fury”, but we don’t go there yet lest we shift our focus onto them, onto someone else. We must take just these verses and deeply and personally wonder what God is saying to us, because these verses are aimed straight at us, the church, and these words are not proclaimed as comfort from the past, but as a program for today. … more »

The Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

St Peter the Apostle

21 January 2019 at St. Peter & St. William Churches in Naples, Fl

Isaiah 62, 1-5
+ Psalm 96 + 1 Corinthians 12, 4-11 + John 2, 1-11

Can’t you just imagine what Mary said to her son as they were leaving that wedding feast? I can, and have often enjoyed sitting with this episode wondering what it was like for the wine steward, the servers, the bride and the groom, their parents. We’ve all been to weddings big and small, and we know how many people it takes to satisfy the expectations of everyone. So, when we sit with this story, your imagination can lead to some wonderful insights which might well be revelations. So, on their way home, Mary says to Jesus: “Really?” Jesus says: “What?” She looks at him as only a mother can and says: “600 gallons of extra ordinary wine! … more »

The Baptism of the Lord

13 January 2019 at St. Peter & St. William Churches in Naples, Fl

Isaiah 40, 1-5, 9-11 + Psalm 29 + Acts 10, 34-38 + Luke 3, 15-16; 21-22

A few weeks ago, I was sitting with the RCIA group, and it was time for some open questions. Someone in the group asked why Jesus had to be Baptized. It seemed strange to this man that Jesus would be baptized as though he needed to repent or be saved. I always love the questions that get asked at RCIA, because they so often touch on things that those of us who were Baptized as infants and raised in Catholicism never think to ask, but probably should. The paradox of the Christ’s Baptism is in every way another Epiphany or manifestation of who Jesus Christ is for us. … more »

The Epiphany of the Lord

6 January 2019 at St. Peter & St. William Churches in Naples, Fl

Isaiah 60, 1-6 + Psalm 72 + Ephesians 3, 2-3, 5-6 + Matthew 2, 1-12

There is often a real historical element to Gospel events that the writers use as a basis for bringing forth some revelation. This story is a perfect example. It makes the story complex and requires some time to sit with it turning over all the facets and elements that Matthew brings together. At the time Christ was born, the word “Magi” described powerful people from the Parthian empire just east of Judea. First readers of Matthew would know that Herod and Parthians were not friendly. The Parthians had invaded Judea just a few decades earlier. … more »