Sometimes it’s easier to think of all the bad things—bombings, murders, illness, misfortune—in the world than the good things. But we must realize that there are good things, even in difficult times, for which we can give thanks.
Read JN 18:33B-37 Pilate said to Jesus, "Are you the King of the Jews?" Jesus answered, "Do you say this on your own or have others told you about me?" Pilate answered, "I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests handed you over to me. What have you done?"
Starting at the end of October, we are often inundated with images of happy, harmonious families gathering around the table to enjoy a huge Thanksgiving feast. The implication is that all families are joyfully united at Thanksgiving because, well, it’s Thanksgiving and everybody’s happy at Thanksgiving. Not true.
Read MK 13:24-32 Jesus said to his disciples: "In those days after that tribulation the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. "And then they will see 'the Son of Man coming in the clouds' with great power and glory,
Read MK 12:38-44 In the course of his teaching Jesus said to the crowds, "Beware of the scribes, who like to go around in long robes and accept greetings in the marketplaces, seats of honor in synagogues, and places of honor at banquets. They devour the houses of widows and, as a pretext recite lengthy prayers. They will receive a very severe condemnation."
Last week, we had an amazing six-day family retreat led by our dear friend and spiritual director who also happens to be a priest. We tucked ourselves away in a little cabin on the coast and quieted our souls with time away from ministry, early morning walks on the beach, evening swims and night time crab hunts. We dotted the days with the once in a life-time experience of whale watching and a bit of surfing.
Read MK 12:28B-34 One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him, "Which is the first of all the commandments?" Jesus replied, "The first is this: Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
Recently I was standing with my kids in the checkout line at the store when my son, Alex, fixed his eyes on a woman a few lines down, dressed in traditional Muslim attire. “Why’s she dressed like that?” he asked as I reminded him that it’s impolite to stare.
Read MK 10:46-52 As Jesus was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizable crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus, sat by the roadside begging. On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, "Jesus, son of David, have pity on me." And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he kept calling out all the more,
Read Mark 10:35-45 James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to Jesus and said to him, "Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you." He replied, "What do you wish me to do for you?" They answered him, "Grant that in your glory we may sit one at your right and the other at your left." Jesus said to them, "You do not know what you are asking. Can you drink the cup that I drink or be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized?" They said to him, "We can."