The First Reading from Genesis is the infamous story of God putting Abraham to the test. God commands Abraham to offer his son, Isaac, to the Lord as a sacri#ce. Abraham obeys the Lord. Yet, a messenger of the Lord cries out at the last moment to stop him. Because of Abraham’s faithfulness and surrender to the Lord, he is blessed abundantly.READ MORE
St. Peter reminds us in our Second Reading of the blessings we receive from Christ’s Passion, Death and Resurrection — “Christ suffered for sins once… that he might lead you to God.” And again, “[Baptism] is… an appeal to God for a clear conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.”READ MORE
In our Gospel, a leper knelt before Jesus and said, “If you wish, you can make me clean.” Jesus reached out and touched this diseased man and healed him. He then encouraged the man to show himself to the priest and offer himself a cleansing, referencing what was commanded in the Law of Moses. By completing these rituals, this man might be reinstituted into the community.READ MORE
As we reflect on our Gospel, we recognize that God possesses all authority and that we want to give Him all authority. Jesus was teaching in the synagogue on the sabbath. All were fixed on His words and astonished at what He had to say. Suddenly everyone’s attention shifted to a man with an unclean spirit who began to question Jesus and His authority. Jesus responded, “Quiet, come out of him!” and removed the evil spirit from the man. All were amazed at the healing of this man.READ MORE
Simon, Andrew, James and John demonstrate this decision for us in their response to Christ’s calling, "Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men." In both instances, the men immediately abandoned what was before them and followed Christ.READ MORE
Our Christmas season concludes with the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord. Jesus was not baptized because he needed to repent — rather, He was revealing who He is and what He came to do.
It is from His mission that we can receive the sacrament of baptism — when we become adopted sons and daughters of God. From that moment, we belong to Christ — we become His stewards. Our lives should be a re"ection of this relationship. The way we live should reveal Whose we are.
In our First Reading, the prophet Isaiah shares a message of hope, “Why spend your money for what is not bread, your wages for what fails to satisfy?” We should ask ourselves, "Who is the king of our hearts?" As Christian stewards, it should be God. We often $ll our lives with things that satisfy us only for a moment. If we truly do belong to Christ, then we will make Him our top priority. What we $ll our lives with should reveal that He is King. In our Gospel, Mark reveals the intimate relationship between God the Father, God the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus and God the Father proclaimed, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.” We, too, have access to an intimate relationship with God. But like all good relationships, it "ourishes with effort. How we spend our time and share our gifts says a great deal about Whose we are.
Today we celebrate the Third Sunday of Advent, Gaudete Sunday. “Gaudete” is a Latin word, meaning “rejoice.” The Christian steward should be characterized by a spirit of rejoicing.
Our First Reading, from Isaiah, expresses a fitting motto for us. “I rejoice heartily in the Lord, in my God is the joy of my soul.” It is God Who is the source of our joy and contentment — not things or achievements or comfort, but our relationship with God.
This is why stewards can share so freely of their time, talents and material possessions — because ultimately, we are not attached to these things. We recognize them as good gifts from our loving Father, but we are attached to the Giver of the gifts, not the gifts themselves. This allows for great freedom in life and the capacity for great joy in the Lord.READ MORE
We serve a merciful and patient God. In His kindness, He warns us that we will be called to make an account one day for the way in which we made use of the gifts He has given us.
The most precious gift He has given us is His own Son, Whose birth we are preparing to celebrate.
St. Peter describes the loving kindness of the Father in our Second Reading today, saying God “is patient with you, not wishing that anyone should perish but that all should come to repentance.” Yet, in the same passage we receive this warning: “The Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a mighty roar... and the earth and everything on it will be found out.”READ MORE
Today we begin the beautiful and holy season of Advent. With all that we have going on this time of year, it’s no wonder that Advent does not always seem to get the attention it deserves. But if we will commit to living this season well, we will experience a deeper conversion to Christ and find real transformation in our lives as Christian stewards.
Why? Advent calls us not only to look back in grateful contemplation of Christ’s first coming, but it also calls us to look forward in preparation for His Second Coming. Advent is a time to reset and regroup, to repent over any misplaced priorities, to turn our minds and hearts back to God while we still have time. We do so not out of fear or guilt, but rather, out of gratitude for Love Incarnate lying in a manger bed.READ MORE
Today we come to the end of the liturgical year, celebrating the magnificent feast of the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe. Our readings provide contrasting images of this King of ours — He has authority over all, and yet, He is humble and tender in His care for us, especially the most vulnerable.
How can we properly honor and love such a King? By offering Him our very lives through the stewardship way of life.
The Gospel passage from Matthew shows us how. The passage begins with Christ’s own description of His Second Coming, “When the Son of Man comes in his glory and all the angels with him, he will sit upon his glorious throne, and all the nations will be assembled before him.” Then the moment of judgment will come. Some will be invited into the Kingdom of Heaven — the others to eternal punishment.READ MORE
We are reminded today that we will each be called to give an account for the gifts God has given us — our physical, intellectual and material gifts — as well as the gift of time itself.
Jesus illustrates this truth in our Gospel passage from Matthew. He tells the story — commonly known as the Parable of the Talents — of a wealthy man who is about to go on a journey. Before he leaves, the man calls his three servants to “entrust his possessions to them.”
The master in our parable gives to the care of each servant a portion of his money (“talent”) commensurate with that servant’s abilities. The first two prove to be good and faithful servants — they “immediately” put the talents to use, doubling what had been entrusted to them. The third servant reacted to this responsibility with fear — in fact, he did the opposite. He hid master’s talent, burying it in the ground. He took the safe way, the easy way out.READ MORE