Our Lord Jesus is known for not doing what we would expect. Born a peasant, not a king; in a stable, not a palace. Dies a felon's death. Is humiliated instead of exalted. And, here today, at the beginning of His ministry, He moves into the heart of the outcasts.
Scripture: Isaiah 9:1-4; 1 Corinthians 1:10-18; Matthew 4:12-25
By being baptized, Jesus began His work for us, His people. This event brings to us the 'epiphany' that Jesus, the man, is also God's Son. And, because of Him, we, too, are washed clean in the waters of baptism.
Scripture: Isaiah 42:1-9; Romans 6:1-11; Matthew 3:13-17
The Feast of the Epiphany, a lesser known Christian holiday in America. It is the beginning of an entire Church season of the same name; Epiphany. It is a time marked by events that reveal to us that the human, known as Jesus, is more than just a human ... He is Divine. He is God. The visit of the magi is the first even in this season, as Gentile wise-men come and worship a humble toddler. But, these 'three kings' are not the only kings in the story ...
Scripture: Isaiah 60:1-6; Ephesians 3:1-12; Matthew 2:1-12
The commemoration of the Holy Innocents, those children who were slain by Herod who was trying to kill the newborn King; Jesus, stands in stark contrast to the festive sentimentality that fills the Christmas season. One child born, dozens slain. What can we learn from this terrible act of a merciless narcissist?
Scriptures: Isaiah 63:7-14; Galatians 4:4-7; Matthew 2:13-23
Many families will sit around their living rooms to hear the Nativity story. More than likely, the story they will turn to is the one told in St. Luke's Gospel. But, St. Matthew tells the story through different eyes. He tells us of the struggles of St. Joseph, Jesus' step-father. Joseph was very gracious man; just, compassionate, humble, obedient....
What can we learn from this silent saint?
Scripture: Isaiah 7:10-17; Romans 1:1-7; Matthew 1:18-25
The Advent Wreath is a symbol of God's continuing revelation to His people. He continues to call us, to enlighten us through His Word, and to feed our faith in the Sacraments. St. John the Baptizer also serves to point us to "the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world." Come and behold Him!
Scripture: Isaiah 35:1-10; James 5:7-11; Matthew 11:2-15
The time of year between Thanksgiving and Christmas is often seen as a time of peace, thankfulness, family and all things gentle and nice. But, when we look around our world, our homes, or even our own hearts, peace is not truly there. So, how can we call Jesus the Prince of Peace, if we don't see, feel, or experience peace? Listen to what the prophets Isaiah and St. John the Baptizer have to say...
Scripture: Isaiah 11:1-10; Romans 15:4-13; Matthew 3:1-12
Advent... most Christians don't know what to do with it. Everyone else is making merry, going to parties, decorating the tree, decking the halls... But, Advent is a season of waiting. It isn't Christmas. It is the preparatory, penitential season that precedes Christmas. The Christmas season in the Church begins on December 25th...the same day the rest of the world is done with it. What is the Christian to do?
Scripture: Isaiah 2:1-5, Romans 18:8-14; Matthew 24:36-44
Posted on November 27, 2019 12:00 PM
This last Sunday of the Church year, goes by a couple of different names; The Sunday of the Fulfillment and/or The Feast of Christ the King. But, included in the names and in its place at the end of the Church year, the emphasis is sure. The end is coming, God's promises will be fulfilled, and Christ is the King of kings. In a world where darkness is winning, we rest in the hope, and in the presence, of our Holy King.
Scripture: Malachi 3:13-18; Colossians 1:13-20; Luke 23:27-43
Posted on November 26, 2019 12:27 PM