Category Archives: Retreats/Reflections

Study, Pray, Serve: 15th Sunday of the Year

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Here are some of the themes that surface in the readings for this 15th Sunday of the Year.

1st Reading – Amos 7:12-15

  • Amos is rejected by Amaziah, the priest of Bethel, to be a prophet far away in the land of Judah.
  • Amos admits that he was a shepherd; it was God who called him to prophesy to the people of Israel.

Psalm – 85:9-14

  • “Lord, let us see your kindness, and grant us your salvation.”
  • God is the source of blessings and graces…and we will hear what God proclaims.

2nd Reading – Ephesians 1:3-14

  • This hymn of praise gives glory to Christ, the source of our redemption.
  • We have been chosen by the Lord to hear his word of truth, the gospel of salvation.

Gospel – Mark 5:7-13

  • Jesus summons the Twelve apostles and sends them out two by two with a sense of urgency and trust.
  • They are empowered to continue his earthly ministry: preaching repentance, driving out demons, and curing the sick.

Mass Readings – 15th Sunday of the Year

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Study, Pray, Serve: 14th Sunday of the Year

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Here are some of the themes that surface in the readings for the 14th Sunday of the Year.

1st Reading – Ezekiel 2:2-5

  • Ezekiel is sent by God as a prophet to a people who have rebelled in the past.
  • Whether they heed or resist, they will know that a prophet has been sent among them.

Psalm – 123: 1-4

  • “Our eyes are fixed on the Lord, pleading for his mercy.”
  • The Psalmist cries out to God on behalf of the people who have experienced mockery and contempt.

2nd Reading – 2nd Corinthians 12:7-10

  • Paul acknowledges his weaknesses as an opportunity to rely on Christ.
  • In Christ we have the strength we need to face the hardships and persecutions of this world.

Gospel – Mark 6:1-6

  • Jesus is rejected in Nazareth as the people take offense at him.
  • Christ is amazed at their lack of faith, and does no mighty deeds there.

Mass Readings – 14th Sunday of the Year

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Study, Pray, Serve: The 11th Sunday of the Year

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Let’s take a look at some of the major themes we find in the readings for the 11th Sunday of Ordinary Time.

1st Reading – Ezekiel 17:22-24

  • The prophet offers the cedar as a sign of God’s restoration for the people of Israel, which will be ultimately fulfilled in the Kingdom of God.
  • God’s power reigns supreme over all creation.

Psalm – 92:2-3,13-14,15-16

  • “Lord, it is good to give thanks to you.”
  • God is praised for mighty deeds that bring blessings to those who live holy lives.

2nd Reading – 2nd Corinthians 5:6-10

  • We remain courageous as we follow the Lord in faith.
  • In both life and death we belong to the Lord, from whom we will receive recompense for the good or evil we have done.

Gospel – Mark 4:26-34

  • This passage offers two parables about the kingdom of God that highlight the contrast between the humble beginnings of a seed and the final glory of a mature plant.
  • The simple start of a small seed reminds us that God’s power touches the little and the lowly, resulting in a final creation beyond our expectation.

Mass Readings – 11th Sunday of the Year

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Study, Pray, Serve: 4th Sunday of Easter

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Study: What do the readings say?

Pray: What do the readings say to me?

Serve: What do the readings make me do or say…today?

Let’s take a look at some of the main themes that we find in the Scripture readings for the 4th Sunday of Easter, often known as Good Shepherd Sunday.

1st Reading – Acts 4:8-12

  • Peter preaches the Good News immediately after a healing miracle.
  • Jesus Christ is “the stone rejected by the builders, which has become the cornerstone.” (Psalm 118)

Psalm 118:1, 8-9, 21-23, 26, 28-29

  • This psalm is quoted by St. Peter in the passage of Acts.
  • God’s power and might transcends human limitations.

2nd Reading – 1 John 3:1-2

  • The baptized are “children of God” and have the same relationship as the first disciples.
  • Our relationship with the Father is in opposition with the world.
  • There is more to be revealed, and then we shall be like him and see him as he truly is.

Gospel – John 10:11-18

  • The Lord Jesus is the Good Shepherd who lays down his life for his sheep.
  • There are “wolves” who catch and scatter the sheep.
  • The sheep (disciples) know the Lord, who also goes out and serves “other sheep” as well.

Mass Readings – 4th Sunday of Easter

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Catholic Inspiration Archives

Note: This post was first published on April 19, 2021.


Walking with Mary on the Way of the Cross: in six parts. Catholic Inspiration

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This six part retreat was given during Lent in 2021 at the Cathedral of Christ the King. Each session stands alone and can be heard in any order. However, they are listed below in the order they were given. May these reflections help us draw closer to Christ and one another.

Part 1 – Confronting Injustice – February 18, 2021

Part 2 – Jesus falls three times – February 25, 2021

Part 3 – Simon and Veronica – March 4, 2021

Part 4 – Jesus is stripped – March 11, 2021

Part 5 – Jesus is crucified – March 18, 2021

Part 6 – Jesus dies – March 25, 2021


Walking with Mary on the Way of the Cross: Jesus dies. Catholic Inspiration

This sixth and final installment of the Lent Retreat focuses on the reality of death in the last three Stations: Jesus dies, Jesus is taken down from the Cross and Jesus is laid in the tomb. As the Lord triumphed over death through his resurrection, we recognize that death is our doorway that leads to eternal life with Christ.

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Monday Conversation: Opening our hearts to the Passion of the Lord. Catholic Inspiration

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This Monday Conversation discusses the principal components of Mark and John’s Gospel account of the Passion, using the practice of Lectio Divina (Divine Reading) to help us enter into this great story of God’s love for humanity.

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Walking with Mary on the Way of the Cross: Jesus is crucified. Catholic Inspiration

My photo of the 11th Station at Chiesa Nuova in Rome.

In this 5th installment of the Lent Retreat, Fr. Andrew talks about the sacrificial offering of Christ on the Cross…inspiring us to recognize the Crosses in our lives and carry them with the hope we have in the Lord’s triumph.

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Monday Conversation: Creating a Pattern of Prayer. Catholic Inspiration

Daily Prayer is a crucial pillar in our spiritual lives. This Monday Conversation offers practical tips to examine how we can build a pattern that fits and adjusts to our particular circumstances.

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Walking with Mary on the Way of the Cross: Jesus is stripped. Catholic Inspiration

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This fourth installment of the Lenten Retreat focuses on the humiliation and shame associated with being stripped of dignity. As the Lord experiences some of the most painful aspects of mental anguish, we take comfort that he redeems it with His saving love.

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Catholic Inspiration Archives