Easter, 5th Sunday. At Confirmation you were sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit as God’s child, servant, and messenger. Just like ancient kings sealed their manuscripts, so God has set his seal upon you. This should give us confidence in God.

God fills us with his life so that we can love boldly in words and in deeds. Let’s prune away the wasteful, selfish growth so that we can spread the Chrism of holiness to all we touch.

(3 May 2015)

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Leave aside the things that distract you from Me.
I am the One Thing Necessary to you in this life.
Save your eyes, your ears, your mouth, your hands, and your heart, your whole being for Me, and I will unite you to Myself.
Close your eyes to vanities, and your ears to flattery and deceit.
Open your mouth to praise Me, to sing My glory, to speak of Me, and to speak good things to your neighbour.http://www.catholicworldreport.com/Content/Site140/Blog/2297corpuschris_00000001450.jpg

Keep yourself for Me as I keep Myself for you in the Sacrament of My Love.
Know that I wait for you.
There is a consolation that only you can give Me.
It is your friendship that My Heart desires and this friendship of yours cannot be replaced by any other.
You are Mine and I am yours.

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Easter, 4th Sunday. The Good Shepherd knows the sheep, cares for the sheep, and even dies for them. Through His wounds God’s life flows out to us. His sheep bear the same wounds. They continue to offer others God’s love in a selfish world. This unconditional loving becomes the cornerstone of our lives, and enables us to avoid dead-ends of selfishness. Follow the wounded shepherd and you will find the path to true life.

(26 Apr 2015)

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Easter, First Communion. God led the Israelites out of Egypt through the Red Sea and into the desert. There in the desert God fed them with manna until they came to the Promised Land. We walked through the Red Sea when we were baptized. Now we are wandering in the Spiritual desert. God feeds us with the Eucharist as we journey towards the Promised Land of Heaven.

(19 Apr 2015)

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Easter, 3rd Sunday. Imagine thinking that your child, friend or classmate had died in a car accident. What would you want to say to them that you never said? Now imagine meeting them the day after and discovering they are fine. That’s what the Resurrection would feel like. All those little fights and arguments would suddenly seem so trivial.

The little fights and arguments we have with God are called Sin. He didn’t cause the fight but he wants to help fix it. So Christ offered himself as the one true sacrifice to bury our sins in the tomb so we can be reconciled with our Father. Just as it was written that The Christ must suffer and die and so rise from the dead, so also it is written that every Christian must suffer and die with Christ if we want to rise with Christ. We all want the joy of the Resurrection, but the only way to get there is the road of the Cross.

(20 Apr 2015)

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Easter, Second Sunday (Divine Mercy) As members of the family of God, we all have a part to play. Pray about your gifts.  One “chore” that belongs to the whole Church is God’s mission of Mercy. We bring that mercy by giving to the needy, through the Sacrament of Confession, and by accompanying those who are struggling to believe. The Apostles helped Thomas believe and how great was his faith.

This weekend is known as Divine Mercy Sunday because of a Polish sister who had visions of Jesus. Jesus told her, “I demand from you deeds of mercy which are to arise out of love for me. You are to show mercy to your neighbors always and everywhere. You must not shrink from this or try to excuse yourself from it.” Let’s receive God’s mercy. Let’s bring others to God’s mercy.

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I wished someone a Happy Easter and they said, “That already happened.” Easter happened last week… unless you have the good fortune of being a Catholic! In that case, Easter is only just getting started. After 40 days of prayer, fasting and abstinence, we have one heck of a party coming. Easter Sunday is just too big to fit in one day, so it gets 8 days. This is known in the Church calendar as the Octave of Easter. We sing the Gloria every day of the week and we sing to the people, “Go in the peace of Christ, Alleluia, Alleluia!” Also, as a side note, your Easter candy should last the whole week until the Sunday after Easter. Known as “Divine Mercy Sunday”, it is a profound reminder that God’s love can overcome anything, even our own sins.

But we’re not done partying yet. Because the Easter season itself lasts 50 days. It includes the feast of the Ascension 40 days after Easter (Acts 1:3) and finishes on the Feast of Pentecost, which this year will be May 24th. That’s 50 days of feasting to make up for our 40 days of fasting. The Church in her wisdom is telling us something simple but profound: God always gives us more than we give him. A little fasting is richly rewarded. A lifetime of generosity will be repaid with an eternity. The God who loves us is never outdone in generosity. The world’s method of partying gets old fast. A Catholic party is always in some way a celebration of God’s love — and that never gets old.

So next time someone asks, “Did you have a good Easter?”

Tell them, “I’m having a good Easter!”

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Easter: One week down, 6 more weeks to party!

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Easter Sunday. Christ comes out of the tomb and says… no wait, He’s not there. Where is Jesus? It’s a question we may have asked many times. The Bible answers this question for us: He is behind us when we weep, on the road when we are troubled, and in the community who prays on Sunday. We are the ones who “Eat and Drink with Him after the Resurrection.” I found Jesus in the Eucharist when I converted to the Catholic church at the age of 12.

So why do we gather on Sunday? To celebrate the Resurrection and to practice for Heaven. In Heaven we will all be one, we will praise  and thank God, listen to His voice, see him face to face, and enter into Communion with Him. So we do all these things at Mass. In Heaven they don’t work, so no one should have to work on Sunday. Instead we should enjoy the world He has created and the people He has given us. This is what it means to keep Sunday Holy. God can only work with the things we give Him. Give God everything.

My search for Jesus wasn’t over when I entered the Catholic Church. I had to continue to look for Him and find Him in and through the Church. Saints, candles, water, even the smell of incense reminds us of the God who loves us. Keep searching for Jesus and you will begin to see Him everywhere: in nature, daily events, and other people. Receive Him and be transformed by Him. May others look into your face and say, “I know that Jesus is Risen from the dead because I see Him within you.”

(5 Apr 2015)

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They have taken the Lord from the tomb, and we don’t know where they put him.” These are the first frantic words of Mary Magdalene on the morning of Easter Sunday. She had seen Jesus nailed to the cross for three hours. She had watched him die on Good Friday. She watched as they buried him, sealed the tomb, and set a guard of Roman soldiers. When she and other women came back early Sunday morning, the stone was rolled away and the tomb was empty.

Where is Jesus?

It is a question we have probably asked ourselves many times. When we read on the news that yet another group of Christians was kidnapped and murdered by extremists: Where is he? When you get the word that the cancer is back, despite all your prayers: Where is he? When you find yourself again trapped in patterns of sin, addiction, mental illness or abuse: Where is he? When you cannot find the resources you desperately need to provide adequate food, clothing, and safety to the ones you love: Where is he? When you hit your knees again in prayer, and no one seems to answer: Where is he?

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