Archive for March, 2010

Homily – Palm Sunday MMX 3/28/10

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

Homily – Palm Sunday MMX 3/28/10

On Palm Sunday, the time of Action is now over for Jesus and His Disciples. Now begins the Time of Passion.

During His Three Year Public Ministry, from His Baptism at age 30 to His entry into Jerusalem at age 33, Jesus was almost non-stop action, each day preaching and teaching vast crowds of people, traveling from village to village by foot and by boat, working miracles, healing the sick, casting out demons, calling people to come follow Him.

And all this non-stop action, all this was setting the stage for this Week when He enters into Jerusalem. And now, the time for Action is over, and the time of Passion begins.

Jesus redeems the world not by any Action on His part, but by pure Passion, by suffering.

Like His Mother Mary, who at the Annunciation didn’t say “I will do it Lord” but rather said “Let it be done to me”, Jesus this Week says “Let it be done to me” and suffering the Cross, He merits the Resurrection and opens Heaven for all believers.

And Holy Week for us should be not a time of action or busy-ness, but a time of passion, a time where we allow Jesus and His Heavenly Father to love us.

I highly encourage everyone to stop whatever action you normally do this week, and take time to meditate on Christ’s Passion. Try to attend the Solemn Holy Week Triduum Services this Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday.

The Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord’s Supper will begin at 7 p.m. Thursday Evening in the Church. Let us join with the Twelve Apostles as they kick off their sandals and recline at Table with Jesus. This Solemn Mass ends at about 8 p.m. with an outdoor, moonlight Eucharistic Procession to the Altar of Repose set up in the Fr. Blain Hall.

After the Last Supper, Jesus asked His disciples to watch and pray with Him in the Garden of Gethsemane, and so, Silent Prayer and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament will continue after Mass in the Church Hall until 11 p.m. Holy Thursday Evening for all those who wish to spend some time in prayer with Jesus on the Eve of His Passion.

At Noon on Good Friday, we will be having the Stations of the Cross followed by the Novena and Chaplet of Divine Mercy upstairs in the Church.

And 7 p.m. Good Friday Evening will be the Solemn Commemoration of the Lord’s Passion and Death, which will include the unveiling and veneration of the Cross, the Proclamation of the Passion according to John, and a Holy Communion Service.

On Holy Saturday Evening, Christ our Light will banish the darkness of our Church as the Easter Proclamation is sung by the light of hundreds of candles. Come and celebrate with us the most solemn Mass of the Church Year, the Easter Vigil, starting at 8 p.m. Saturday April 3rd.

And then, on Easter Sunday Morning, we will rejoice over the Empty Tomb and encounter the Risen Christ in the Breaking of the Bread.

Easter Sunday Masses are 8:30 a.m., 10 a.m. followed by an Outdoor Easter Egg Hunt for the Children in front of the Church, and 11:30 a.m. Easter Sunday Morning.

And so this Holy Week, may we cease from our activity and take the time to be passive, entering into the mystery of Christ’s Passion and Death, allowing the Love of God to touch deep within our hearts, so that He may then fill us with the Joy of His Resurrection.

Homily — 3rd Sunday Lent C 3/7/10

Sunday, March 7th, 2010

Homily — 3rd Sunday Lent C 3/7/10

In the Gospel, an man who owned an orchard goes to one of his fig trees in order to pick ripe fruit off of it, but he finds the fig tree barren.

And just as that orchard owner expected that fig tree to be bearing fruit on it’s branches, so our Lord Jesus expects you and me to bear fruit in our lives.

At the Last Supper, he said to us He who abides in me will bear great fruit. And in Matthew 7 verse 16 Jesus says By their good fruits you shall know who is and who isn’t my disciple.

And these Good Fruits, St. Paul tells us in Galatians 5:22, are the Fruits of the Holy Spirit: Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Long Suffering, Compassion, Generosity, Gentleness, Faith, Modesty, Self Control, and Chastity.

Too often however, Jesus comes to us and sees us bearing not these good fruits of the Holy Spirit but those rotten fruits of sin:

Instead of finding the good fruits of Love Joy and Peace, Jesus finds in us Hatred, Envy, and Discord.

Instead of finding us Patient and Long Suffering, Jesus finds us Impatient and Despairing.

Instead of finding us Compassionate, Generous, Gentle, and Faith-filled, He finds us Cold Hearted, Stingy, Rude, and Doubting.

Instead of seeing us being Modest in our words and dress, Self-Controlled in our eating and drinking, and Chaste in our thoughts and actions, Jesus sadly sometimes finds some of us being Indecent, Gluttonous, and Lustful in these areas.

In today’s Gospel, Christ warns us if we do not repent and bear good fruit, we will perish – disaster will befall us due to our sins.

For you and I to bear good fruit, we need to do the two things the Gardener did in the parable:

we first need to cultivate the ground by pulling up the weeds of sin which have been growing up in our soul, by making a good confession to a priest.

And secondly, we need to receive the fertilizer of Jesus’ forgiveness.

Confession doesn’t just root out sin in our souls, it also fertilizes our souls by pouring the Love of Jesus back into our hearts, so that we may once more bear fruit in the future.

Next Saturday, March 13, our parish will again have for the 6th Year in a row All Day Confessions, from 8:00 in the morning to 3:30 in the afternoon.

For 7 ½ hours, 2 to 5 priests will be available at all times to hear your confession.

In this week’s bulletin, we list the names of the fifteen priests and one bishop who will be here, what languages they speak (some speak French, Portugese, Polish, Spanish and Italian as well as English), and what times they will be hearing confessions in case you want to go to them. So cut it out and tape it to the Fridge so you won’t forget to come next Saturday.

The priest’s name will be posted on the confessional, and each of the five confessionals will have both a screen to kneel behind if you want to be anonymous, and a chair to sit in if you want to confess face to face.

Soothing Music will be playing in the Church all day during confessions, Signs will be posted showing exactly where to wait, and Written instructions will be available if you need it.

Also inserted into this week’s bulletin is a wonderful “Guide to Confession” which has everything you need to know about going to confession, including the Act of Contrition, and most importantly an examination of conscience which lists all the different sins we can fall into.

May we take the time this Lent to pull those weeds of sin out of our hearts by means of a good confession, so that our hearts might be fertilized by God’s grace, and once again bear fruit in abundance for Jesus.