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19th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on August 8, 1993

Readings: Kings: 19:9, 11-13; Romans 9:1-5; Matthew 14:22-33

In today’s readings, we are challenged to see God in our midst.  In the Gospel, Jesus appears and approaches his disciples while walking on the water.  Peter, in his human frailty, begins to sink when he is invited to walk on the water with Jesus.  But Jesus, in a wonderful showing of his humanity, simply reaches out and catches Peter.  From our scripture readings today, we know that there are precious few people that see God in all of His splendor.  For the remainder of us, God is present in the faces and actions of our sisters and brothers. In this homily, we are reminded of the floods in the Mississippi and the tornadoes in Petersburg, VA not because of the natural disasters themselves, but because of the tremendous response from others who offered their help.

18th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on August 5, 1990

Readings:  Isaiah 55: 1-3; Romans 8:35, 37-39; Matthew 14:13-21

This week’s Gospel is the famous story of five loaves of bread and a couple of fish.  In this account, his disciples suggest that Jesus disperse the crowd of 5,000 because they couldn’t feed them.  But Jesus objects and says, “There is no need for them to disperse. Give them something to eat themselves.”  All were fed and many of us, over the years, have marveled at the miracle.  But in today’s homily, Fr. Healy asks us to consider the possibility that Jesus was showing us that if we share what we have with our brothers and sisters, there will be plenty for all.

17th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on July 29, 1990

Readings: Kings 3:5, 7-12; Romans 8: 28-30; Matthew 13:44-52 or 13:44-46

Fr. Healy begins this homily with a few favorite Healy family stories. We are encouraged to treasure those things that are really valuable in the eyes of God. In the first reading, Solomon asks for understanding.  In the Gospel, we hear that “the reign of God is also like a dragnet thrown into the lake, which collected all sorts of things.”  We are challenged to think about whether we care more about people and human relationships over things, success, or fame? Do we subscribe to structures and agreements that keep some of our sisters and brothers marginalized?

16th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on July 22, 1990

Readings: Wisdom 12:13, 16-19; Romans 8:26-27; Matthew 13:24-43 or 13:24-30

We must resist the temptation to solve complex problems with quick and dramatic solutions.  We, as God’s children, must learn to live in the midst of perceived evils because uprooting the bad is always at the risk of destroying what God alone knows to be good.  Therefore, we must accept what we perceive as evil because we might be wrong. We must nurture, encourage, and courageously sacrificing and allow God to sort things out later.  What we must do then is to call ourselves and others to do good.  Through careful, loving cultivation of each individual, can we deal appropriately with the presence of evil?  Jesus spoke in parables for us to come to a deeper, fuller understanding of the truth. We must trust in God.

 

 

15th Sunday of Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on July 15, 1990

Readings: Isaiah 55: 10-11; Romans 8: 18-23; Matthew 13: 1-23

In today’s Gospel, Jesus reminds us that those that are really listening, will truly hear God and see God’s hands at work in our lives. From Isaiah, God is likened to a gentle rain. And yet, we also know that God also speaks to us as thunder and lightning.  In fact, God is always speaking, but are we always listening? In trying to discern the events of our day, we must know is that God is Love.  As Paul spoke to the Romans in today’s second reading, we too are reminded “Creation was made subject to futility, not of its own accord but by him who once subjected it; yet not without hope, because the world itself will be freed from its slavery to corruption and share in the glorious freedom of the children of God.”

 

15th Sunday of Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on July 11, 1993

Readings: Isaiah 55: 10-11; Romans 8: 18-23; Matthew 13: 1-23

What should we feel in the face of tragedies, such as diseases or natural disasters, in light of the first reading where Isaiah eloquently says that God’s words and actions come down to enrich our lives?  Jesus asks us in this day’s Gospel to let God’s words live within us to be the best people that we can be, bringing triumph out of tragedy by being one with our sisters and brothers in their need.  We can never understand or control nature, but we can be in harmony with it through our unique giftedness.

14th Sunday of Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on July 4, 1993

Readings: Zechariah 9:9-10;  Romans 8:9, 11-13; Matthew 11:25-30

What does it mean to be a citizen of God’s Kingdom?  From the fist reading of Zechariah, we hear that God would put an end to war, jealousy, and human competition. In the second reading, Paul reminds the Romans and us today, that we must walk in the spirit. In the Gospel, Jesus tells us to learn from Him just as children learn.  That is, we are to be gentle and humble of heart.  We are challenged to reflect on how capital punishment fits with our being citizens of God’s Kingdom. If we really believe in the unconditional, all-embracing forgiveness of Jesus, we cannot harbor vindictive, hostile dispositions toward anyone. Let us all learn from Jesus and forgive others. Only in this way, will be truly free, in the way that Jesus talks about freedom, and find rest in our hearts.