Originally delivered on February 13, 1994
Readings: Leviticus 13:1-2, 44-46; Corinthians 10:31-11:1; Mark 1:40-45
The first and last readings today are about leprosy. Fr. Healy suggests that we all have leprosy from time to time. Fr. Healy surmises that leprosy is something that scares, threatens, or makes someone feel insecure. Even those with “gifts” can be ostracized as a leper. We’ve all counted another “out”, so that we can be sure that we are “in.” We are challenged to look for God in the faces of those that we’d otherwise reject, including gays, lesbians, people living with HIV/AIDS, and those of different races or ethnicities.
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 May 6, 1990
Readings: Acts of the Apostles 2:14, 36-41; Peter 2:20-25; John 10:1-10
Again today we hear about the Good Shepherd and his sheep. Fr. Healy invites us to wonder why that one sheep might have left the flock. Could the flock have made it impossible to fit in? But in this day’s readings, we hear that Jesus is the gatekeeper. Others do not the have the right to keep some of the sheep out of the flock. Therefore, we have a responsibility to be like Jesus and always welcome others, and perhaps especially, the one sheep that has wondered off because of how the flock treats him or her.
Originally delivered on October 12, 1986
Readings: Kings 5:14-17; Paul to Timothy 2:8-13; Luke 17:11-19
There is no doubt about it — God can cure all human suffering, but His use of power is limited to opportunities to encourage our faith. The Scripture tells us that for the foreigners, God was willing to heal them, in order to help us to increase our faith and believe more in the Lord. We are called to grow in faith each day. We are reminded that in 1986, the similarities between lepresy and AIDS were so evident. Then, and now, we are called to be loving to all people just as Jesus loved the ten lepers in today’s Gospel. Our God is not merciful, but rather God is Mercy. In His image, we are called to bring love and compassion to all those suffering with human afflictions.
Originally delivered on October 8, 1989
Readings: Habakkuk 1:2-3, 2, 2-4; Paul to Timothy 1:6-8, 13-14; Luke 17:5-10
In today’s Gospel we hear of the importance of faith and confidence in God. The message in today’s liturgy is powerful and burdensome: the God in whom we believe, does not intervene in this world, but He gives us the strength for each of us to act to make the world a more just place. Fr. Healy cites several examples of individuals that worked to address issues of homelessness, AIDS, and sexism. We are called to do the same, but not for reward, but because faith is its own reward.
Readings: Genesis: 1:1-2.2; Genesis 22:1-18; Matthew 28:1-10
Originally delivered on April 15, 1990
We are joyful today because the Easter people know that God’s strength and triumph is greater than any death. We will experience and taste death in countless ways, but we will persevere because of our God. We are encouraged to see our Easter blessings even in the depths of our despair.