Originally delivered on Oct 3, 1993
Readings: Isaiah 5:1-7; Philippians 4:6-9; Matthew 21:33-43
In this week’s Gospel, we hear another parable about a vineyard. Today we hear about tenant farmers who brought forth beautiful grapes, but they thought it was their own doing and forgot about their responsibility to the vineyard owner. Fr. Healy reminds us that his theory is that the Gospel is meant to comfort and console as well as challenge us. How do we tend the vineyard? Do we sit on the sidelines and do nothing in the face of injustices in our world? Let the same Jesus that comforts us, challenge us in this day’s reading to renew our effort to tend His vineyard.
Originally delivered on September 27, 1987
Readings: Ezekial 18: 25-28; Philippians 2:1-11 or 2:1-5; Matthew 21:28-32
In today’s Gospel, Jesus speaks to us again in a parable about a son who says he’ll do something for his father and doesn’t while another son who refuses, but eventually does what is asked. Fr. Healy suggests that we are likely more like the first son because while we say “yes” we haven’t really put that yes into action on behalf of our Father. We might look around who are saying yes to Jesus by the way that they are living their lives. Indeed, we might look to the experiences within our own country. How do we reconcile our Constitution with the fact that we had slavery for so long, waited more than a century for women to get the right to vote, or still engage in capital punishment? In our own personal lives, how do we go beyond our “yes” to doing the real work that we are called to do. Saying yes to Jesus, means risking ourselves, our wealth, and perhaps even getting into a little bit of trouble. We must get out into the field and empty ourselves for our brothers and sisters.
Originally delivered on September 12, 1993
Readings: Sirach 27: 30-28:7; Romans 14: 7-9; Matthew 18: 21-35
In this week’s homily, we hear of the atrocity of a supporter of Haitian President Aristide being dragged out of a Mass being said by Fr. Antoine Adrien and murdered. We are also reminded of the history taking place in Yugoslavia. Despite these global injustices, and even with our personal pains and grievances, we are, as Christians, called to forgive, just as God forgives us. Indeed, the message is clear: God is forgiveness. What about you?
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.
Today we hear the homily on the Prodigal Son. In the first reading, we hear of a vindictive God, ready to send fire down to the sinners. But in the Gospel, we hear from Jesus that God is indeed love and mercy. How many times must we hear this parable to let it sink in? How differently might we see ourselves if we trusted Jesus? If we were set free of our self-doubt and fear, how different we would be to our brothers and sisters. Delivered on the eve of the 1992 election, Fr. Healy speaks of the importance of the parable for that time where some were raised up by putting others down. In light of this parable in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, how do we rationalize our actions that hurt others?
5th Sunday of Lent
Originally delivered on April 1, 1990
Readings: Ezekial 37: 12-14; Romans 8:8-11; John 11:1-45
In today’s readings, we are reminded that God can restore life. We are reminded that through Jesus, there are no human experiences from which God can’t restore us. He reflects on the life of Sr. Thea Bowman whose example shows us how to answer the call for new life. Furthermore, Fr. Healy reflects on the events in Sri Lanka and South Africa. He urges us to risk our own lives so that life may be more full, more real for our sisters and brothers in our communities and around the world. But first, we must believe.