Homily for July 5, 2015: 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time

The gospel we’re encountering right now is sending a message that’s both powerful and timely. It all comes down to one little word: faith. What happens when you have it, what happens when you don’t. Last Sunday, Mark’s gospel told us about a faith so powerful it could work miracles. This week, faith is absent—and [Read More...]

Homily for June 21, 2015: 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time

  View image | gettyimages.com I’m going to guess that most of us have never been on a small boat in the middle of a raging storm on the Sea of Galilee. But we all know the feeling—and it doesn’t really have anything to do with the weather. It’s pure fear, the fear that we [Read More...]

Homily for June 14, 2015: 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time

This Sunday, after the weeks of celebrating Easter, then the big feasts of Pentecost and Trinity Sunday and Corpus Christi, we find ourselves slipping back in Ordinary Time. “Ordinary” is exactly how you might describe the subject of today’s gospel. Jesus speaks of the power contained in a seed—an object so small, but so significant. [Read More...]

Rev. Leo O’Donovan’s homily at funeral of Beau Biden: “It is like the night of Good Friday”

A funeral homily worth hearing—a prayerful reflection on life and death, suffering and hope. [Read more...]

Homily for May 31, 2015: The Most Holy Trinity

This weekend marks the end of an era, as my old CBS colleague Bob Schieffer makes his last appearance on “Face the Nation.” He’s retiring at the young age of 77, after 46 years at CBS News—capping a career that began as a reporter for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram in the 1960s. Friday, the New [Read More...]

Homily for Pentecost: “Strike a match. Set the world ablaze.”

Two thousand years ago, men and women who had followed Jesus asked themselves that question on the first Pentecost. And we are the beneficiaries of their answer. All of us who gather to pray and remember and rejoice on this Pentecost are heirs of that first Pentecost. Those first Christians cleared the path, and often [Read More...]

“Here is a happy priest”: homily for a priest’s 25th anniversary

Today Fr. Antonin Kocurek, a priest in our parish who ministers to the Czech apostolate in the Diocese of Brooklyn, celebrated the 25th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood. He asked me to serve and preach at the Czech Mass marking this occasion in Astoria, Queens. Here’s what I had to say. +++ The last [Read More...]

Homily for May 14, 2015: Ascension Thursday

Some of you probably saw the report that came out Tuesday from the Pew Research Center. They tracked religious affiliation between 2007 and 2014. According to the study, the number of people who are Christian is declining. Sharply. An overwhelming majority, about 70% of Americans, still call themselves Christian. But that number has dropped eight [Read More...]

Homily for May 3, 2015: 5th Sunday of Easter

The scriptures this week introduce us to someone we don’t hear about very much—but he is critically important to Christianity and, I think, to the times in which we live. I’m speaking of St. Barnabas. The reading from Acts describes how he, in effect, took Paul under his wing—in part to protect him from frightened [Read More...]

Homily for April 26, 2015: 4th Sunday of Easter

What does it take to be a good shepherd? I just got back from a 10-day trip to Jordan, and you see shepherds everywhere. They are part of the life in that corner of the world. The Bedouins who tend the sheep slumber on hillsides under tents; they stand watch in large empty fields while [Read More...]