“Look at that host and you look at Christ”: Homily for Corpus Christi

From the vault: my Corpus Christi homily from 2009. ++ Back in the 1970s, when there was a lot of liturgical innovation going on, Dorothy Day invited a young priest to celebrate mass at the Catholic Worker. He decided to do something that he thought was relevant and hip. He asked Dorothy if she had [Read More...]

Homily for June 15, 2014: Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity

One of my favorite parts of being a deacon is something most people never see: Baptisms. I usually do them every three months, in rotation with Fr. Passenant and Fr. Anthony. They’re usually small affairs, just a few dozen people, and it only takes a half hour or so.  But it’s a chance to take [Read More...]

Homily for June 1, 2014: 7th Sunday of Easter

A common question among some Christians is “WWJD?” What would Jesus do?  Maybe we need to start asking ourselves “WWFD?”  What would Francis do? We find the answer to that question again and again in his trip last weekend to the Holy Land. Before leaving Rome, he visited the Basilica of St. Mary Major for [Read More...]

“Do not stay too long on the mountain”: Homily for Ascension Thursday

From the vault, my homily for Ascension Thursday in 2008:  The other day I read the news that Tamar Hennessey had died. Don’t be surprised if you’ve never heard of her. She was an obscure figure to most Catholics, but not insignificant. She was the daughter of Dorothy Day. Long after her mother had died, [Read More...]

Homily for May 25, 2014: 6th Sunday of Easter

This is Memorial Day weekend, a time when a lot of us will be firing up the barbecue, heading to the beach, or catching the X-Men movie. It’s the unofficial start of summer. The roads will be crowded, the boardwalks will be busy. Kids are counting down to the last day of school. Parents are [Read More...]

Homily for May 11, 2014: 4th Sunday of Easter

On a spring morning in 2010, a young man by the name of Dayan Machado found himself in a place he once would never have expected:  face down on the floor of a cathedral in Florida, praying to the saints. How he got there is a story unto itself—and illustrates beautifully, I think, part of [Read More...]

Homily for May 4, 2014: 3rd Sunday of Easter

For a woman in Davidson, North Carolina, it was a disturbing sight. Driving by the local Episcopal church, she noticed a vagrant sleeping on a bench outside. She called the police, who came to investigate. It turned out to be a false alarm. The homeless man on the bench wasn’t a man at all. It [Read More...]

Homily for April 20, 2014: Easter

Just yesterday, I got an email from a friend who is a priest in South Carolina. He had some wonderful news to share. Effective today, Easter, the Catholic Church has one more parish in the United States of America.  The country’s newest parish is St. Claire of Assisi in Daniel Island, South Carolina, in the [Read More...]

Good Friday homily: “Who can say what transpired in Judas’s soul during his final moments?”

From the Good Friday homily this year, here’s Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, the preacher of the papal household, preaching in St. Peter’s today on idols, money, mercy, Judas—and the simple (but often forgotten) church teaching that we cannot say for certain that there is any particular person is in hell: One can betray Jesus for other kinds [Read More...]

Homily for April 18, 2014: Good Friday

About 15 years ago, my wife and I made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. There, in the Old City of Jerusalem, we walked the Via Dolorosa, the Way of the Cross, passing shops and souvenir vendors selling cards and olive wood crosses.  We prayed at the stations, and we encountered many of the sites [Read More...]


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