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S+L BLOG: Reflections



Solemnity of All Saints – Saturday, November 1, 2014 The following words of Cardinal Angelo Amato, S.D.B., Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, spoken during the Synod of Bishops on the Word of God in 2008, still resound in my mind and heart on this Solemnity of All Saints: Jesus says: “Learn ...read more
Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A – October 26, 2014 Today’s first reading from Exodus (22:21-27) and Matthew’s Gospel story about the greatest commandment (22:34-40) challenge us in the ways that we love God and neighbour. The Exodus reading relates some specific provisions of the Law regarding widows, orphans, and the poor. The Lord ...read more
Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A – October 19, 2014 In today’s Gospel (Matthew 22:15-21), the Pharisees try once again to entrap Jesus in his speech. They realize that they are being portrayed by Jesus as having refused an invitation to conversion of heart (as in last Sunday’s banquet story of Matthew 22:1-14). Therefore ...read more
Twenty-eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A – October 12, 2014 Matthew’s parable of the wedding feast and the declined invitations (22:1-14) is the last of three successive parables of judgment (beginning in 21:28) against Israel, especially her leadership. There are obvious connections among the three parables. Each has an “authority figure” (father, landowner, and ...read more
Twenty-seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A – October 5, 2014 We are back in the vineyard again this week, immersed in another of Matthew’s complex Gospel parables. Jesus told these parables in answer to the question: “What is the kingdom of God like?” His parables are short narratives that combine realistic details from first-century ...read more
Historically speaking, the church had to take root somewhere. When in the early 30’s AD Jesus of Nazareth was executed, rose from the dead and sent his Spirit to be with his little band of disciples, Rome was the dominant political and social player. Peter and Paul brought the faith to Rome before being executed ...read more
Twenty-sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A – September 28, 2014 Immediately preceding today’s Gospel story, Jesus has returned to the Temple (Matthew 21:23a) and reclaimed this sacred space for his healing ministry (21:14) and the stage for teaching and challenging his opponents. The chief priests and elders of the people continue to pressure him: ...read more
Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time – September 21, 2014 When Jesus teaches through parables, he expresses profound truths with simple stories and images that engage minds and hearts. In the Old Testament, the use of parables reflects an ancient, culturally universal method of teaching an ethical lesson applicable to everyday life, by using symbolic stories ...read more
The Exaltation of the Holy Cross –  Sunday, September 14, 2014 At the heart of every World Youth Day is a very simple, powerful, ancient Christian symbol: two large planks of wood, known as the World Youth Day Cross, that not a few journalists have called the “Olympic Torch” of the huge Catholic Festival that we were ...read more
Twenty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A – September 7, 2014 Today’s Gospel passage from Matthew 18:15-20 compels us to consider the essential elements in the process of forgiveness among members of the Church community. Matthew’s text stresses the fraternal correction of members who sin (18:15-18); the importance of the disciples’ prayer (18:19-20); and the ...read more