Tag Archives: loss

Daily Mass: The Lord is close to the brokenhearted. Catholic Inspiration

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The Psalm response addresses the cry of those who have experienced pain and suffering in this life. The Lord is near…may we draw strength from Jesus Christ and allow his grace to strengthen and soothe our souls.

Mass Readings – Friday of the 4th Week of Lent

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Daily Mass: David’s grief at the death of Absalom. Catholic Inspiration

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David grieves over the death of his beloved son, Absalom, whose rebellion reveals the weaknesses within the kingdom.

Mass Readings – Tuesday of the 4th Week of the Year

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Daily Mass: David grieves for Saul and Jonathan. Catholic Inspiration

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David’s lament for Saul and Jonathan reveals the complex nature of our grief. Saul’s mix of good and bad qualities illustrate how we can mourn the loss of people that we meet in the messiness of life. In our own complicated moments of grief may we turn to the Lord and trust that Christ will untangle the knots.

Mass Readings – Saturday of the 2nd Week of the Year

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Daily Mass: The pain of violence and war. Catholic Inspiration

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The Philistine army disastrously defeats the people of Israel, who suffer enormous casualties and loss.

Mass Readings – Thursday of the 1st Week of the Year

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Catholic Inspiration Archives

St. Hilary, pray for us!


Daily Mass: Faith in the context of human frailty. Catholic Inspiration

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The sorrow of Hannah resonates with all couples who long to parent children but are unable to conceive. This example of our human frailty underscores how our faith can strengthen us in times of trial.

Mass Readings – Monday of the 1st Week of the Year

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Daily Mass: Love your enemies. Catholic Inspiration

While the phrase “love one another” sounds great when we like the people in question, the real test of faith occurs when it’s tough.   The command of Jesus to “love your enemies” will demand us to become like the Lord – who even forgave those who nailed him to the Cross.   To do this we call upon God for the grace we need to be filled with the love of Christ so that we can share his love in all moments of life…even when surrounded by enemies.

Mass Readings – Saturday of the 1st Week of Lent

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


5th Sunday of the Year: Confronting the reality of human suffering

Study: Reflect upon an experience of suffering.  How did your faith help you face it?

Pray: Are you or someone you know facing pain or loss?  Pray that God gives the grace needed to face it.

Serve: Walking with others on their journey of anguish demands time and attention.  Are you being called now to assist someone in need?

Mass Readings – 5th Sunday of the Year

Let’s take a look at these readings:

  • 1st Reading – Job speaks from his anguish and misery.
  • Psalm – “Praise the Lord, who heals the brokenhearted.”
  • 2nd Reading – Paul states his need to preach the Gospel.
  • Gospel – Jesus heals the sick and preaches to the people.

On the surface of these readings we see the obvious – there are times when we encounter suffering.  Whether it’s body, mind, heart or soul…most people on more than one occasion are brought low by pain, struggle or loss.

What’s more, there is no “spin” in the Bible.  Instead, we repeatedly see in the Scriptures a raw look at the challenges people face without trying to explain away the hardship.  It’s almost as if the Word of God seeks to remind us that the journey of life often stops in places of anguish.

We might be tempted to ask the Lord why.  We might try to find reasons why a good and almighty God allows it.  Such a reaction is normal and typical.

Here’s the problem.  Many of the hardships of life have no easy answers or simple explanations.  Much of life is a mystery, and many things will not be explained until the day we stand before the Lord when all is revealed.

Suffering by itself serves no purpose, yet we often recognize that there are many times we “suffer” for something greater:

  • The athlete who suffers in practice to perform in competition
  • The student who suffers in study to perform academically
  • The employee who suffers with work to complete a challenging project
  • The friend who suffers for a loved one to bring help and comfort
  • The parent who suffers for a child to show compassion and care

You get the point.  We often embrace suffering because we recognize that there is meaning and purpose in much that is difficult, challenging and hard.

But what about when we don’t understand?  One of the most helpful questions I have ever found in the face of suffering is this:

How does my faith help me face this?

For remember, when our lives are focused on the Lord all things – even suffering – fit into a proper perspective.  Christ’s suffering on the Cross breaks the bonds of sin and death; Christ’s resurrection shows us that there is something far beyond the realm of pain and loss.

As Jesus healed and preached Good News we call upon our faith to help us face the difficulties of life with strength.  Perhaps we will not know why suffering happens, but God will give us the grace to learn how we will face it.

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts

 


Daily Mass: Our Lady of Sorrows. Catholic Inspiration

Mass Readings – Our Lady of Sorrows

Following immediately after yesterday’s Feast of the Holy Cross, the readings today focus on Mary as she endured the “sword of sorrow” as she stood at the Cross of her son.  Her sorrow reaches out through time and space to all people who have been overwhelmed by grief.  May her example help us to face our moments of pain with a sure and steadfast faith in Jesus Christ.

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Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts

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The Descent from the Cross, Rogier van der Weyden, 1435, Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid.

Note: This is one of the most moving paintings I have ever stood before.  


Daily Mass: Our Lady of Sorrows. Catholic Inspiration

station-jesus-in-the-tomb

Fr. Andrew’s Daily Mass Homily Podcast

Mass Readings – Our Lady of Sorrows

Mary’s example of faith in the midst of sorrow inspires us to face our grief and loss in this life with God’s grace.


Daily Mass: Jesus is the Cornerstone. Catholic Inspiration

Three Great Things

Fr. Andrew’s Daily Mass Homily – Friday of the 2nd Week of Lent

Daily Mass Readings

With help from some 4th graders from Mrs. Peterson’s class at Cathedral School, Fr. Andrew looks at how God can take bad things and bring about great goodness.

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If you are looking for more material to help you this Lent, you might consider this list of presentations I have offered over the last couple of years.  Feel free to check it out and share if you find it helpful:

Podcast Resources for a Powerful Lent

4th grade


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