Tag Archives: Christian Life

Daily Mass: Light and Darkness. Catholic Inspiration

While today’s passage from the Gospel of John remains one of the most well known and beloved of all Scripture, the verses that follow indicate the choice that we all have to make.  Do we seek Christ, the Light of the world, or do we prefer darkness…because our deeds are evil?  May we face our temptations and resolutely follow the Lord, whose light shines in our world and helps us find our way.

Mass Readings – Wednesday of the 2nd Week of Easter (St. Stanislaus)

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4th Sunday of the Year: Our use of Power and Authority

Study:  Consider a time in life when you used power and authority well.  What helped and guided you?

Pray:  Ask the Lord for the wisdom and courage to live your life in accordance with God’s commands.

Serve:  How can you make a difference with your life today?  What is in your reach to do that makes an immediate difference?

Mass Readings – 4th Sunday of the Year

In great and small ways, we all exercise power and authority.  Some people make daily decisions that shape the lives of nations; others rule kingdoms no bigger than the back garden.  Yet regardless of size and shape, the fact remains that power and authority are part of human life.

Having these two dynamic attributes, however, are no guarantee that they will be used wisely and well.  History is filled with both good and bad examples where power and authority have been used – for great good and great harm.

Like all gifts, power and authority find their origin in the Lord.  God is the source of all life, and every blessing, every ability, derives its strength from the throne of Heaven.  Both the first reading and the Gospel today acknowledge this truth: Moses proclaims that God will raise up a future prophet for the people; Jesus teaches with authority and casts out demons.  As Christ fulfills the promise of Moses, the Lord extends his power to conquer sin and death that we might have hope in this world as we look to the world to come.

In light of these readings two thoughts emerge for consideration:

  • Do I acknowledge God’s power and authority in my life?
  • Do I use the power and authority I have for God’s glory?

Think about it.  We often know what we should do…the question is, do we do it?!  The Lord’s commands (forgiveness, prayer, service to the poor, justice, etc.) are not nice things to think about in our spare time.  They are dictates from on high that are meant to enliven us and fill us with grace, peace, and joy.  The problem of course is that our own ego can get in the way and redirect our energy away from God.  In these moments, we search our conscience (Remember the Examination of Conscience last week?) and return to the Lord.

And while we are examining our hearts, we have the opportunity to put into practice the power and authority we have in a 1001 ways.  Consider:

  • Family, Friends, Acquaintances, Colleagues, Classmates
  • Strangers, Enemies, Chance Visitors
  • The Environment, The Legal System, Local Government
  • Any place where our lives touch another…

Since all power comes from God and flows through us, it might be helpful to recall that one day we are going to stand before Jesus Christ.  With loving eyes he will look into our souls and ask what we did with the gift of life we were given.  It’s not the mistakes we made that will be hardest to bear, but the opportunities we missed to good with what we had.  Perhaps today we might reflect on the Lord’s commands for our lives, and reconsider how we might put them into practice with the power we possess.

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts

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Note: This post was first published on January 25, 2015.


Daily Mass: The Body of Christ. Catholic Inspiration

Mass Readings – Tuesday of the 31st Week of the Year

St. Paul teaches that we are part of the Body of Christ, and as members of this body we work with and for one another.  What’s more, Jesus explains in a parable that the Kingdom of Heaven is open to many that society might not recognize as belonging to this body.

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


24th Sunday of the Year: Forgiveness. Catholic Inspiration

Mass Readings – 24th Sunday of the Year

It’s non-negotiable.  Forgiveness is a key ingredient in the Christian life and without it we cannot receive the grace that the Lord lavishes upon us.  Who do we need to forgive?  To whom do we need to ask for forgiveness?  May we call upon God’s grace for the strength we need to be people who put forgiveness into practice.

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


Daily Mass: Your grief will turn to joy. Catholic Inspiration

Mass Readings – Friday of the 6th Week of Easter

The Lord bluntly teaches that grief is part of our journey of faith, but that it is not the final destination. As we face our challenges today we turn to Jesus Christ for the strength and guidance that will bring us to joy in His kingdom.

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


Monday Conversation: Podcast Resources for a Powerful Lent

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There are many ways to get the most out of Lent.  This gift that the Church celebrates every year provides an opportunity for spiritual renewal.  Below you will find a short summary of some of the Homilies, Presentations and Retreats that I have offered over the last couple of years with themes that might speak to your own Lenten journey.  Feel free to try any of these podcasts; if they are helpful, you are welcome to share them with others.  After all, the purpose of the season is to draw our hearts to Jesus Christ!

Homilies

Preparing for Lent (13 Minutes) – This homily podcast offers some general helpful hints to consider as you get ready to enter into the season as a whole.  Given at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Superior, WI on March 2, 2013.

Ash Wednesday (4 Minutes) – This short homily shows how messy, dirty, grimy ashes on the outside remind us of the messy, dirty, grimy reality of sin in our hearts.  As we repent and believe in the Gospel, may we call upon the Lord to wash us clean with the grace of Jesus Christ.  Given at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Superior, WI on Feb. 18, 2015.  

Holy Thursday (8 Minutes) – At the Last Supper Jesus teaches and commands his disciples to receive his Body & Blood and give your life in service to others.  In our reception of Holy Communion may we be strengthened and renewed to offer our lives, following the example of Christ.  Given at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Superior, WI on April 2, 2015.

Good Friday (10 Minutes) – The Cross of Christ – ugly, filthy with the blood of countless victims, jagged, and splintered – becomes the sign of the depth and breadth of agony Jesus endured.  As he embraces his suffering, the Cross becomes a bridge whereby he unites with all humanity, meeting us in our most profound moments of weakness and sin, and gives us hope through his triumph over death.  We must understand the Cross in the light of Easter joy: For if we only focus on the Cross then we have no hope – life becomes dark and filled with despair; and if we only focus on Easter joy then we have no respect for the gift of the Lord’s Passion – we do not value the price He paid for our salvation. Given at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Superior, WI on April 3, 2015.

Easter (7 Minutes) – Their lives were changed; the sorrow cast from the shadow of the Cross is now transformed by resurrection glory…He’s alive!  The grace of Jesus Christ inspired the disciples to go out to the world – carrying their crosses – with the power the Lord’s triumph.  Christ brings this transformation to us today; his power continues to work in the world.  May we open our hearts to the resurrection…and be transformed!  Given at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Superior, WI on April 5, 2015.

 

General Presentations

Personal Prayer: Making it Real (46 Minutes) – How do we make our personal prayer real?  This homily podcast highlights practical tips that bring power and meaning to our personal prayer. Given at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Superior, WI on April 11, 2015.

Personal Healing & Renewal (44 Minutes) – The presentation explores a four step process of personal healing and renewal: Acknowledgement; Diagnosis; Prescription; and Follow through.  By examining four quadrants of human life (physical, intellectual, relational, spiritual) this presentation guides the listener toward personal growth in practical ways. Given to the Northern Waters Parish Nurse Group on October 9, 2015.

Christ Renews Our Lives! (31 Minutes) – This talk was presented to Confirmation students from the Cathedral and St. Francis Xavier parishes. Note these four points: God made us to be united with Him; Sin destroys our relationships with God and one another; Christ restores the relationship through his life, death, and resurrection; Each of us can choose to accept the gift of Christ and live as his disciple. Given at the Cathedral of Christ the King on November 11, 2015.

Extraordinary Life! (36 Minutes) – This “Theology on Tap” presentation asks some big questions:  Are you looking for some practical ways to transform your life?  Do you long for something special, filled with power, purpose, and meaning?  Fr. Andrew looks at 3 areas (Self, Others, God) and applies them to the ordinary and routine elements of daily life. Given at VIP in Superior, WI on October 22, 2015.

Prayer: Practical Pointers to Grow Closer to God (30 Minutes) – This “Theology on Tap” reflection offers some practical ways to strengthen your prayer life and grow closer to God.  Some topics include: Time, Space, Location, and Preparation; Dealing with Distraction; Using resources – including Scripture and Devotionals; Finding what works for you.  Given at Dubh Linh’s Pub in Duluth, MN on November 11, 2013.

 

Retreats

Knights of Columbus Men’s Retreat (September 13, 2014 – St. Joseph Church – Hayward, WI)  This Catholic Men’s Retreat explores three ways we draw near to Jesus Christ and one another: study, prayer, and service.

Eucharist (March 8, 2014 – St. Dominic Church – Frederic, WI) This parish retreat focuses on Eucharist as the central expression of our Catholic faith.

Christian in a Changing World (February 22-24, 2014 – Cathedral of Christ the King – Superior, WI) This parish mission looks at three key concepts: Our direction in life; our spiritual fitness; putting our faith into practice.

Walking with the Lord in Holy Week (March 9-12, 2015 – Our Lady of the Valley – Green Valley, AZ) This parish mission takes the listener on a journey with Christ – from his entry into Jerusalem, through the Last Supper, his Passion, and his Resurrection.

May this Lent be filled with grace and power – God bless you!

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Daily Mass: Divine teaching, human weakness. Catholic Inspiration

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Mass Readings – Tuesday of the 7th Week of the Year

As the Lord attempts to teach the disciples he catches them arguing about who is the greatest.  His response: to set before them a child…that as they welcome the innocent and vulnerable into their midst, they welcome Him.

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts