The Family is a Trinity (#629, Trinity Sunday)

Fr. Joel Homilies 2 Comments

Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity (Year C) · The Holy Trinity: 1+1+1=1! Three persons, one God. The Trinity is foreshadowed in the beginning when God creates humans in His image. We have intellect and free will. But we are also made male and female, and so able to give a gift of ourselves to another. The love between a husband and a wife mirrors the Trinity: he gives himself to her, she gives herself to him. The two become one and then three in one.

In a similar way, the Father gives Himself completely to the Son. The Son gives Himself back to the Father. This total gift of love between the Father and the Son is the Holy Spirit. The family reveals the Trinity, and the Trinity reveals the true nature of the family. We are called to live our lives in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.Read More


100,000 Miles and Counting

Fr. Joel Life on Planet Earth 1 Comment

My first year in my three-parish assignment was also one of the snowiest years on record. After the third snowfall of 14+ inches, I decided it was time for a vehicle with all-wheel drive. I took delivery of my new Subaru Forester on the feast of St. Anthony in 2011. It was the year of the tsunami and nuclear reactor meltdown; not a good time to buy a Japanese vehicle. But the shortage hadn’t driven the price up, and I still got the color and options I was looking for. I resolved to drive it for 200,000 miles or 10 years, whichever came first.

I just recently passed the half-way mark. The dealership, hoping to get me to trade in my vehicle, sent me an email with its trade-in value. It has lost $10,000 of value. That means I spent 10 cents per mile for the privilege of owning the vehicle, before you even start to include insurance, licensing, gas and maintenance.Read More

Open Your Heart to the Holy Spirit, Not the Evil Spirit (#628, Pentecost)

Fr. Joel Homilies 1 Comment

Pentecost Sunday · Jesus rises from the dead and he is poised to conquer the world. Instead, he sends us the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit makes every Christian a Christ: members of His body, children of the Father, temples of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit enables Christ continues His work through His Church.

At the Annunciation all Mary has to do is cooperate with the Spirit. God will do the rest. In the same way, the work of conversion and Salvation is God’s work. God will do the rest if we only cooperate with the Holy Spirit.

Our hearts are divided between the Holy Spirit and our Enemy, the evil spirit. The Bad Spirit discourages us, tears us down, and makes us feel anxious and trapped. The Good Spirit gives us peace, joy, and tells us it will be OK. Keep out the Bad Spirit; stir up the Holy Spirit!Read More

Invite the Holy Spirit and Remove the Barriers (#627, Pentecost)

Fr. Joel Homilies 1 Comment

Pentecost Sunday · Featuring Deacon Michael: God is already blessing us as much as he possibly can. To receive more of God we must send an invitation and remove the barriers from our hearts. St. Philip Neri invited the Holy Spirit into his heart. The presence of the Holy Spirit enlarged his heart so much it cracked two ribs. Are we going to have open doors, open hearts, to the Holy Spirit?

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The Love That Never Abandons Us (#626, Ascension & Mother’s Day)

Fr. Joel Homilies 1 Comment

Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord (Year C) and Mother’s Day · The love of my mother is always with me no matter how far apart we are. The Holy Spirit “mothers” the Church and every Christian. Through the Holy Spirit we have direct access to the throne of God. Listen to the Spirit and cooperate with his work. No matter what happens to us, God’s love will never abandon us.Read More

The Secret to Happiness (#625, Easter 6)

Fr. Joel Homilies 1 Comment

Sixth Sunday of Easter (Year C) · What’s the secret to happiness? Simply to do the will of God. The will of God is not mysterious: we find it through Creation, Conscience, and the Catholic Church. The will of God is not oppressive: it comes from the Heart of the Father. The will of God is not distant: it comes to meet us every day. Through doing God’s will we find peace, joy, and happily ever after.Read More

Bride and groom on church steps

Come to Mass and Hear Your Story (#624, Easter 5)

Fr. Joel Homilies 0 Comments

Fifth Sunday of Easter (Year C) featuring Deacon Michael: Mass is our story. Christ is the bridegroom; we are the bride. Our whole identity is formed by receiving the love that God pours out to us today and every day of our lives. “Love one another as I have loved you.” When was the last time your deeds inspired someone else to fall deeper in love with the Father?Read More

Jesus Waits for You at the Altar (#623, First Communion)

Fr. Joel Homilies 0 Comments

Fifth Sunday of Easter (Year C) · You wear a white garment at Baptism, First Communion, your Wedding, and your Funeral. It symbolizes the purity that God gives us. Heaven is like stepping into the back of church on your wedding. Jesus stands there waiting for you at the altar. We must keep our garment pure and adorn ourselves with the jewels of Heaven. Every Sunday Jesus waits for you at the altar. Keep coming to meet him here at Mass and you will be prepared to walk down the aisle of Heaven.Read More

Confident Sheep Listen and Follow (#622, Easter 4)

Fr. Joel Homilies 1 Comment

Fourth Sunday of Easter (Year C) · Confidence in Christ means we trust that: (1) He knows us (2) He knows True Life (3) He knows how to get us there. No matter how bad our life looks, the Shepherd can lead us to a better place.  The Shepherd calls his sheep to their unique vocations: priesthood, religious life, marriage. He continues to call His sheep each day. Listen and follow.

(17 Apr 2016)

Point to Ponder: Has Christ ever led you astray?

Point to Discuss: Talk to a friend about their vocation story: When did you  know that your spouse was “the one”? (or the priesthood, or their religious community)

Ordination Holy Card - Fr. Joel

O Lord, I am Not Worthy (#621, Easter 3)

Fr. Joel Homilies 4 Comments

Third Sunday of Easter (Year C) · The whole universe is praising God in the great High Mass of Heaven. Every one of us has a unique place in the Heavenly choir. We sing at Mass because God wants to hear his children’s voices. God and he is worthy of all glory and honor and praise. Your job is to praise and worship him. There is no gift, no sacrifice, no service that could be too much for God.

The lamb is worthy, but Peter realizes that he is not worthy. He has denied Christ. Peter must accept Christ’s merciful love. Christ’s love changed him. He became worthy to die for Christ. The Church wants us to remember Peter’s lesson at every Sunday Mass: Lord, I am not worth that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed. Give God permission to love you, and let His love transform you.Read More