Love

2nd Sunday of Advent

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Originally delivered on December 9, 1990

Readings: Isaiah 40:1-5, 9-11; Peter 3:8-14; Mark 1:1-8

Today, we are asked to look at why we might characterize or dismiss the prophets?  In the readings, we hear of two prophets, Isaiah and John the Baptist. Both give us a message to “Prepare ye the way of the Lord.”  We are called to examine ourselves and see if we are an obstacle to God’s plan of peace. Are we willing to pay the price for being peacemakers? If we take Isaiah and John the Baptizer seriously, we must acknowledge the radical call to nothing less than conversion as things as they are and a turning around to be as God wants them to be. Indeed, we are confronted, through this homily, to be like Christ in our responses to the troubles and evils in our world. That is, we are called to love and not avenge. We must bring peace where there is war; kindness and understanding where there is blindness to the truth.  We may be sinners, but we are called to be prophets.

31st Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on October 31, 1993

Readings: Malachi 1:14-2:2, 8-10; Thessalonians 2:7-9, 13; Matthew 23:1-12

In this homily, Fr. Healy discusses the significance of Vatican II, the Church in Haiti, and those that are marginalized by the institutional Church. He characterizes Vatican II as revolutionary and a calling for us to be part of the universal Church in both spirit and responsibility. We are reminded that our conscience is the ultimate law of morality because it is our sacred inner core where we meet God.  We must remember that Jesus responded that the two greatest commandments were to love God and to love our neighbor as ourselves.

30th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on October 24, 1990

Readings: Exodus 22:20-26; Thessalonians 1:5-10; Matthew 22:34-40

This day’s liturgy presents to us the two faces of God.  The first, from the Old Testament, warns us that if we don’t welcome others, such as aliens, widows, and orphans, then we’ll see the terrifying face of God’s vengeance.  The second, from the Gospel of Matthew, is a loving God that says that our love for God and our neighbor is the basis for all of the commandments.  Fr. Healy, joined by Fr. Antoine Adrien of Haiti, asks us to consider how the law of love applies to the issues of the day in Bosnia, Somalia, and Haiti. In this homily, we also hear the rare recorded words of Fr. Antoine, who speaks of the pain and frustration of Haiti.

 

23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on September 5, 1993

Readings: Ezekial 33: 7-9; Romans 13: 8-10; Matthew 18: 15-20

In today’s readings, we first hear Ezekial telling us that we must speak the truth.  Paul then tells us that we must love our neighbor as we love ourself.  Indeed, it must be our life’s work.  Finally, in the Gospel, Jesus tells us to talk to the person.  Sometimes we need others to help us, even the whole Church, if necessary, but understand that sometimes nothing will work, but still love them. We must know and believe that when we’ve done our best, we can leave it in God’s hands.  There are dramatic examples of people following these words and being prophets in our time. We too are called to be prophets.

 

4th Sunday of Easter

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Originally delivered on May 2, 1993

Readings: Acts of the Apostles 2:14, 36-41; Peter 2:20-25; John 10:1-10
In this homily, Fr. Healy asks us which one of us wants to be referred to as sheep.  Any yet, the metaphor is used in today’s Gospel.  We are challenged to acknowledge just how dependent we are for God’s help, guidance, and Grace through Jesus. If we are open to His word, then we can hear Him and make courageous choices in our present world.  We are asked to “do what Jesus would do” when facing economic, social and even personal questions.  If we are members of Jesus’s flock, we must always return hatred and bitterness with kindness, compassion, love, and a willingness to let ourselves go in the name of peace and truth.

1st Sunday of Lent

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Originally delivered on February 28, 1993

Readings: Genesis 2:7-9, 3:1-7; Romans 5:12-19 or 5:12, 17-19; Matthew 4:1-11

We all struggle with a God who is love and mercy who also permits pain, suffering, and evil within His creation.  But through Jesus, we know that we are redeemed.  In spite of and in the midst of all the meanness, madness, and idiocy of human behavior, we are loved and forgiven for our shortcomings.

7th Sunday of Ordinary Time

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Originally delivered on February 18, 1990

Readings: Leviticus 19:1-2, 17-18; Corinthians 3:16-23; Matthew 5:38-48

In the Sermon on the Mount, we are told that we must love our enemies and pray for our persecutors because we are to love just as our Heavenly Father loves us.  Although we may not be able to match God’s love in the same measure, we are nonetheless called to love in the same manner as Him.  This week in 1990, when the homily was originally delivered, marked the release of a prophet in our time, Nelson Mandela, from prison after 27 years.  His love and lack of animosity are a modern day reflection of the love that Jesus manifests for us and in today’s Gospel calls us to imitate.