Mary, Mother of God

1 January 2020 at St. Peter the Apostle Church in Naples, FL

Numbers 6, 22-27 + Psalm 67 + Galatians 4, 407 + Luke 2, 16-21

12:00pm January 1, 2020 at St. Peter the Apostle in Naples, FL

We are on “theological thin ice” when we call Mary “The Mother of God.” No one gave birth to God, but there is truth in saying that Mary gave birth to the Son of God. It takes some spiritual maturity to get this right, and when we do, some important things are then said about you and me. Divinity taking on human nature changes our knowledge of who we are and of our destiny. It allows us to understand God’s nature more fully; but this does not mean that understanding God, ourselves or our role in the divine drama is simple. … more »

The Holy Family

December 29, 2019 at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Castle Rock, Colorado

Sirach 3:2-6, 12-14 + Psalm 128 + Colossians 3:12-21 + Matthew 2:13-15, 19-23

11:30am Sunday at St Francis of Assisi Castle Rock, Colorado

I grew up with images of the Holy Family that always made my family look like the Clampetts. There were those images of Mary and Joseph on holy cards. There was a picture hanging in my school classroom in which Mary was always weaving something. Joseph had obviously been out picking lilies because there was always one in his hand, and I guess he cut it with a carpenter’s square, because that was in the other hand. The boy was always gazing at his holy parents, waiting to obey their next command. … more »

Christmas (Children)

24 December 1, 2019

Isaiah 52, 7-10 + Psalm 98 + Hebrews 1, 1-6 + Luke 2, 1-20

 For the children at St. Peter the Apostle & St. William Churches in Naples, FL

(The children have been given a wrapped gift box containing the statue of the infant for the creche. It has been opened by several of the children and then in procession they have taken the “gift of Jesus:” to the creche. Then, gathering around the presider’s chair I continued.)

We have this wonderful day called, “Christmas” because of one very important word. Because Mary used that word and taught her son to use it, we are here tonight. If we can learn to use that word, many wonderful things can happen in this world. … more »

Christmas (Adults)

24 & 25 December 2019

Isaiah 52, 7-10 + Psalm 98 + Hebrews 1, 1-6 + Luke 2, 1-20

St. Peter the Apostle & St. William Churches in Naples, FL

2:45pm St. William Church, Naples, FL 12/24/2019

We are in this church tonight because we have heard them. We have heard the greatest truth of all, that God is with us. Yet still, there may be some here with us who have not heard that prophetic voice, whose days and lives are long and lonely, who have been abandoned by someone they loved, who live with secrets that if known will push them to the edge of an abyss by the judgements of others. Yet, we are a prophetic church. In spite of our personal failings and our institutional sins, we still must and do proclaim the truth: God is with us. … more »

3 Advent

15 December 2019 at St. Peter the Apostle & St. William in Naples, FL

Isaiah 35, 1-6 & 10 + Psalm 146 + James 5, 7-10 + Matthew 11, 2-11

11:00am at St. William Parish in Naples, FL

If you stop to think about John the Baptist sitting in Herod’s prison, it isn’t hard to realize what is going on in his mind. I imagine that his thinking goes something like this: “I did everything I felt called to do. I never called attention to myself. I recognized the Messiah when he came, and even though we did not agree on which of us should be baptized, I followed his wishes and did what he asked. I spoke the truth even when it was not popular and was dangerous, and look where I’ve ended up.”

I believe that John is having a crisis of faith. … more »

2 Advent

8 December 2019

Isaiah 11, 1-10 + Psalm 72 + Romans 15, 4-9 + Matthew 3, 1-12

St. Peter the Apostle & St. William Churches in Naples, FL

3:30pm SATURDAY at St. Peter the Apostle in Naples, FL

Isaiah opens our liturgy today just as he opened this Advent season last week. He spoke passionately about refusing to accept things as they are and demanding that God’s people look to a future that is better and do something to bring it about. Today that future is described as a time of Justice, and Isaiah envisions a time when a leader will be clothed in justice and faithfulness. This leadership promotes harmony to the point that even natural enemies will become friends. … more »