He has gone out of his mind / He has Beelzebul, and by the ruler of the demons, he casts out demons

Even for Jesus who was so misunderstood and opposed, this seems to be just a bit too much. His family thinks he has suffered a mental breakdown (at the best) and the religious authorities say that he is in league with the devil. What brought things to such a head so early in Jesus’ mission (we are only in Chapter 3 of Mark’s gospel)?

A quick look back shows us that Jesus ...

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Christ is the mediator of a new covenant!

The way in which we celebrate the Eucharist today is steeped in a tradition that is described in today’s first reading from Exodus, although you may not initially recognize it in the somewhat gruesome details of the story.

Moses builds an altar and gathers together the newly liberated Israelites. Representatives of the twelve tribes of Israel are invited to bring sacrifices for the burnt ...

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The Most Holy Trinity

The gesture of the Sign of the Cross, an outward profession of faith, and the words  “In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen” identifies Catholics worldwide. From childhood, we are reminded of the significance of the words, “Father, Son and Holy Spirit – the Most Holy Trinity.” It is also the principle mystery of the Catholic faith – the love of God, the ...

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Pentecost

When I was very young I remember coming across an old 1960s catechism book referring to the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. When I asked my mother why the book referred to “Holy Ghost” when I had only ever known the “Holy Spirit”, she said, “Holy Ghost scared people so they had to change it,” without missing a beat. It was an answer she thought I would understand, but I just ...

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The Ascension

Today we celebrate the truth of our creed: “he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God, the Father.” We celebrate that Jesus has gone before us and opened the gates of heaven. We celebrate that we now live everyday with the hope of Heaven. Jesus is alive — in our hearts through Baptism and through the graces we ...

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Discerning Your Ministry

Here are some helpful hints about knowing if God is calling you to a certain ministry in the Church or not. These steps could also apply to any decision in life, but let’s limit ourselves to liturgical and non-liturgical ministries within our own parish.

At the outset, let us take comfort in the fact that we are never alone in having to figure out God’s will in our lives. This assurance comes ...

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Saul to Paul – A Springtime Journey

As I sit to write this reflection, outside my window the signs of Spring are becoming ever more apparent.  While there is still an early morning chill in the air, the sun feels like it is getting stronger every day, snow is melting and there are buds on the trees.  Once again, God is fulfilling the promise of transforming death into life.  As ...

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The Good Shepherd

Today’s gospel on the theme of the Good Shepherd is a familiar one to us all as are the words “I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father.” I’ve been told that sheep prefer to be led. You lead sheep and they will not go anywhere that someone else does not go first. They become attached to and trusting ...

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What are you doing your best to achieve?

At first glance, today’s second reading appears to have two contradictory messages. We are told that we must obey the commandments of Jesus or there is no truth in us; but we are also told that if we sin, Jesus will be our advocate, and what he has done through his death on the cross is already an atonement for anything that we might do. As I pondered this apparent contradiction, ...

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God’s Mercy

Peace and forgiveness – these are the two related thoughts that come to me in today’s scripture readings. The gospel reading begins on the evening of that first Easter, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews. I find it striking that the disciples are together, albeit meeting behind locked doors. Having been scattered at the time of Jesus’ arrest, and ...

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