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 HOMILY OF THE MASS
26th Sunday Ordinary  Time A-  Homily October 1, 2017

 

As we go deeper into understanding the meaning of the Sacrifice of the Mass, we are challenged by Jesus in today’s Gospel parable of the two sons to consider how we do the Father’s will in our lives.  Growing in the understanding of the Sacrifice of the Mass will move us to do the Father’s will in every aspect of our lives like Jesus did!

Today we look at the Mass from the Our Father to the Recessional.

  1. In praying the Our Father from the heart, we take our relationship with OUR Father seriously.
    1. We pray as Jesus taught us, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven – in this part of the earth – in me!
    2. We recognize we have failed to do the Father’s will but we also have hope that we can repent, receive forgiveness and forgive those who sin against us!
  2. In the Sign of Peace, we do the Father’s will by giving the peace we receive from Jesus to one another.
    1. This is not a time to informally say hello to someone you have not seen for a long time as we would in the street.
    2. Remembering that we are members of Jesus’ Body, we really give Jesus’ Peace to others next to us through our human touch or a sacred kiss!
  3. We then pray repeating that Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.
    1. We recall that thousands of Lambs were being sacrificed in the Temple for the Feast of Passover for the remission of sin, Jesus, the true Lamb of God was being sacrificed on the Cross.
    2. That is why we glorify God’s Mercy so as to have courage to approach the altar to receive Him.
    3. That is why we say with all our hearts, “Lord I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.”
  4. Receiving Jesus in Holy Communion is the Father’s will for us.
    1. The reason why Jesus consecrated the bread and the wine was so that He could remain with us and come inside of us.
    2. When we stay with Jesus spiritually, He makes us able to know and do the Father’s will in our lives.
    3. So we have to give thanks for this mystery by singing the communion hymns and meditating in some sacred silence
  5. After the Prayer after communion and Jesus’ Blessing through the priest, we hear the words of the Deacon or the Priest saying – Go in Peace
    1. This again, is not just get out of here, it is over.
    2. This means, Go to do the will of the Father, to allow Jesus to live in us and give His Peace to the world.
  6. In the Recessional Hymn we really sing for joy because of God’s amazing love for us
    1. We process out following the cross but hope-filled and strengthened on our continued journey toward Heaven!
    2. We do the Father’s will when we fully participate in the Sacrifice Mass.
    3. Today we can be like the son in the parable who said no at first but then changed his mind and later did the fathers’ will!

 

 

 

25th Sunday Ordinary Time A- Homily September 24, 2017

 

As we go deeper into understanding the meaning of the Sacrifice of the Mass, we hear St. Paul tell us today in the second reading how “Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by my life or by death!”  This is a man who lived the Mass!

A- Today as we will go through the Liturgy of the Eucharist to see how our standing, sitting, kneeling, listening, praying, or singing here, disposes our bodies and souls to receive Jesus’ salvation for ourselves and the world!

  a-  At the collection and offering of the bread and wine,

         i. We offer like St. Paul all our spiritual and physical sacrifices – like his struggle between wanting to go to Heaven now and the             good of the people for him to remain!

         ii. With all these natural disasters people are being filled with a holy fear and want to be ready for heaven!

        iii. We need to pray about our weekly spiritual and monetary sacrifice – plan it out before we come to Mass so that it really is a                        sacrifice from the heart!

b. When you see the priest mixing a little bit of water in the wine, he says a silent prayer:

            i. “By the mystery of this water and wine, may we come to share the divinity of Christ who humbled himself to share in                     our humanity.”

          ii. And then the priest invites everyone to pray that my sacrifice and yours may be acceptable to God, the almighty Father

          iii. and you say … May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands for the praise and glory of his name, for our good and the good                 of the whole Church.

          iv. Notice the centrality of our participation in the sacrifice!

          v. Jesus told the men in the Gospel, why do you stand her idly all day – we cannot stand idly at Mass, we have to participate                        actively in His Sacrifice!

c. The Eucharistic Prayer is the highpoint of this sacrifice of thanksgiving.

             i. The priest gives thanks to God on behalf of the whole body of Christ with the preface before the Holy, Holy, Holy – where we                       join the song of the Seraphim Angles as in Isaiah 6:3 or Revelation 4:8.

            ii. Then the priest chooses one of the various Eucharistic Prayers:

                1- These prayers are founded on the prayers of the early church, invoke the Holy Spirit, remember Jesus’ suffering, death                                and resurrection, and offer His Sacrifice and ours for the Church and the whole world; living and dead.

                       a. So each Mass is offered for the particular intentions that are announced and everyone’s personal intentions

                      b. There is usually only one particular intention and donation accepted for each Mass to avoid abuses of money.

                2. The words of consecration in the Eucharistic Prayer come from Jesus’ lips at the Lords Supper

                       a.   and it is Jesus who says them through the priest today,

                       b.  changing the bread and wine into His Sacred Body and Blood!

  d. At the Great Amen, we unite our voices as one in response to Jesus in the Priest who offers His Saving Sacrifice for us and our                salvation.

          i. So we have to say or sing with all our hearts – Amen, so be it!!

 

 

24th Sunday Ordinary Time A- Homily September 17, 2017

 

We continue to go deeper into understanding the Celebration of the Mass so that we can pray the Mass better. The Mass is all about relationship: a relationship of worshiping the God who loves and forgives us and our relationship with each other who are called to also forgive like God forgives us.

 

  1. The Scriptures tell us today
    1. If we are forgiven then we must forgive, with the grace God gives us.
    2. At Mass we are so privileged to participate in Jesus’ saving action of forgiveness – we are on holy ground here!
  2. Today we will go briefly through the Liturgy of the Word of the Mass to see how God disposes us to receive and live in the grace of forgiveness through the Mass
    1. The Readings of Sacred Scripture are a powerful way that Jesus, who is the Word of God, speaks directly to us
      1. The Lord speaks to us here – heart to heart!
      2. That is why the introductory rites prepare us so that we can listen attentively.
  • St. Augustine says we should be careful to receive every part of God’s Word, that he says, “No tendra menor pecado el que oye negligentamente la Palabra de Dios, que aquel que por negligencia deja caer en tierra el Cuerpo de Cristo (en la Eucaristia)?!
  1. For that, we need brief periods of Silence during the Mass, especially between the readings
    1. This allows us to swallow the Holy Word of God like we swallow the Holy Eucharist.
    2. Because the Word about Forgiveness is a big mouthful – that needs to be chewed a lot before we swallow – so we do not choke on it and spit it out.
  • Then we need quiet prayer and reflection when we get home so that it can digest well and become part of us!
  1. The Homily – allows Jesus to continue to explain the Word to us through the Ordained Minister – Priest or Deacon.
    1. I am always amazed when I preach what I think is a poor homily, and someone comes up to me and says, father that was the best homily I ever heard.
    2. You said blah, blah, blah, and it moved me so much – but am thinking, I never said that!!
  • So listen not just what is said directly by the priest or deacon, but also what Jesus is whispering into your mind and heart along with the homily.
  1. The Creed then helps us to make an act of Faith with all the Church as one Body throughout the world – which is why we say it in unison.
    1. Jesus and the Saints shed their blood for this Creed, so it should never be mumbled.
    2. It allows us to go deeper into the Truth that Jesus died and rose again so that we can receive forgiveness and forgive others.
  2. Through the Petitions we exercise our power to pray for all the world,
    1. even those who are our enemies or make life tough
    2. St. James tells us, “We do not receive because we do not ask”

Take a moment to thank God for the people in your life that kept bringing you to Mass every Sunday until it became your own choice to do so – giving you this opportunity to receive through God’s Word, the power to receive and give Forgiveness!! What a privilege!

 

CUT Pieces …

  1. The Lectionary – is different than the Bible since it has selections of the Bible in a 3 year cycle for th weekends and a two year cycle for the weekdays.
  2. Over a three year period we get to hear almost 90% of the Bible in one year if we attend Mass every day!

 

 

23rd  Sunday Ordinary Time A- Homily September 10, 2017

 

Our parish surveys in April showed a big desire in our parish to understand the Mass better so that we can pray the Mass better.

The Mass is all about relationship: a relationship of worshiping the God who loves us into being and our relationship with each other who are being reconciled.

  • Gospel tells us today, “Wherever two or three are gathered together in Jesus’ name, there he is in their midst
  • Jesus is the Head represented by the Priest and the congregation his body

 

  1. The Scriptures give us the context today by focusing on reconciling relationships
    1. Reconciling us with God and with each other – to come into a deeper relationship.
    2. If this is just about a human action, then we are wasting our time here
    3. We are privileged to participate in Jesus’ saving action of leading us in Worship – we are on holy ground here!
  2. Today we will go briefly through the Introductory Rites of the Mass to see how God brings us into deeper relationship with himself and others through the Mass
    1. The Procession – (even a short one) shows us we are on our way to Heaven represented by the Sanctuary where Heaven and Earth meet in every Mass – if we focus in it changes the way we act on the journey!
    2. [[The Entrance Song – lifts our thoughts to contemplate Heaven and encourages deeper union of mind and heart of those who sing together in Jesus’ name]]
    3. The Veneration or kiss of the Altar – by the Priest and Deacon, shows us that the focus is on the Altar is central symbol of Jesus being the Priest, Victim, and Altar.
    4. The Sign of the Cross – is a blessing of our entire body and soul, asking that the power of the cross reconcile us with the Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit
    5. The Penitential Rite – helps us to recognize our sinfulness, to draw us away from the sin and back into relationship
      1. There are different forms of this rite: the “I confess prayer, or the Kyrie (the Lord have Mercy, Christ have mercy, Lord have mercy)
      2. It is not the Sacrament of Confession, and so does not forgive mortal sin,
  • but it can move us to deeper reconciliation with God and each other and inspire us to confession
  1. The Gloria – is a great Trinitarian song of praise used since the fourth century.
    1. It is prayed or sung on all Sundays except for Advent and Lent and also on all Solemnities and Feast Days.
    2. It comes from the Angels song from the Birth of Christ in Bethlehem – “Glory to God in the Highest and peace to his people on earth”
  2. The Collect – or the opening prayer, is the way Jesus, in the person of the priest, lifts up all our prayers to the Father, making them acceptable.

 

Thank God for the people in your life that kept bringing you to Mass every Sunday until it became your own choice to do so – giving you this opportunity to continue to receive the reconciling power of Jesus in these Sacred Mysteries that we have the privilege to celebrate.