Homily for August 31, 2014: 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

In the gospels, it’s been a rough summer for St. Peter. A couple weeks ago, we encountered him climbing out of a boat during a storm, trying to walk on water. He lost faith and began to sink, and Jesus had to rescue him. Then, last week, Jesus gave him the keys to the kingdom [Read More...]

Homily for August 17, 2014: 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Of all the stories that circulated last week about Robin Williams, there was one that I found especially moving.  It was from Brian Lord, who for many years was the head of a prominent speakers bureau. A few years back, he was negotiating to book Robin Williams for an event, so he was finalizing the contract. [Read More...]

Homily for August 10, 2014: 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time

The gospel we just heard is about many things: courage, faith, mystery. But above all, it is about trust. Trusting God in the midst of any storm, and accepting his invitation, in the middle of the storm, simply to come where he is calling us. The world right now is full of storms. Gaza. Ukraine. [Read More...]

“We are all pearls”: a deacon’s homily for this Sunday

A deacon friend sent me his homily for today. It’s extraordinary and, I think, deserves a wider audience. I post it here with his permission. I hope it will resonate with many.  ++ My good friend, Father Hilarion has a saying that goes like this… Everyone who comes into your life is a blessing. Some [Read More...]

Homily for July 27, 2014: 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time—UPDATED

If you visited Facebook Friday afternoon, you would have seen on a sidebar a list of some of the stories that were trending around the world – what people were reading, sharing, talking about. High on the list was the new cast for “Game of Thrones,” Ben Affleck as Batman, a documentary about Nicholas Cage [Read More...]

“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...]