Tag Archives: Pain

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.

********************

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


1st Sunday of Lent – Be with Me Lord, When I am in Trouble

Helping Hand 2

Study: Reflect on a moment when you were in a critical need.  What pulled you through?

Pray: Ask the Lord for grace regarding a difficult situation.

Serve:  How can you be a helping hand to another?

1st Sunday of Lent Readings

Fr. Andrew’s Homily Podcast

Let’s take a look at these readings that help us kick off Lent:

  • 1st Reading – a recap of how God saved the Israelites in Egypt
  • Psalm – “Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble.”
  • 2nd Reading – “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
  • Gospel – Jesus overcomes the Devil’s 3 temptations

Have you ever been in trouble?  Serious trouble?  End of your rope?  Lost?  Confused?  Abandoned?  Scared?  Feeling like you cannot breathe because the air has gone out of your chest?  Feeling utterly alone?

You’re in good company.  People of faith for over 3000 years have called upon the Lord in their darkest moments – seeking guidance and strength.

And God provides.  We don’t have to look very hard to find examples of pain and suffering, hardship and loss, struggle, catastrophe and sin.  We also know that there are no promises that life will be easy and free from pain.  What we know is simple:  God walks with us and sustains us in our moments of need.

Of course this is only a half truth – God walks with us always!  God never leaves us, but for some very human reason we seem to call out loud and strong when we recognize our need for the Lord.  Isn’t it odd that we “get it” when we are in need…that many of us who dedicate our lives to Christ see much more clearly when the truth is self-evident?

Perhaps not.  Perhaps what this first week of Lent shows us is that our need for God (always present in our lives) is most easily observed when we cannot hide from our need.  For when we are in trouble, we are confronted with the clear and obvious reality that it is only with the Lord’s grace that we can be guided and sustained.  In the times of our testing we discover both our limitations and the Lord’s love.

What are you facing in your life right now?  What requires your own personal admission and acceptance of Christ’s mercy?  Be with me, Lord, when I am in trouble!

********************

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


Palm Sunday – The Cross

The Face of Christ

Study:  Reflect on a time you experienced weakness and suffering.  Where did you find the strength to continue?

Pray:  Gaze upon a crucifix and offer to Christ any struggles you are facing right now.  Bring the needs of your loved ones to the foot of the Cross as well.

Serve:  Is there someone in your life who is carrying a heavy cross right now?  How can you offer comfort and assistance?

Palm Sunday Readings (with Year A reading for the Procession with Palms)

Fr. Andrew’s Homily Podcast

How many times throughout our lives have we made the sign of the Cross?  Stop and think:  at Mass; meal prayers; morning & evening prayers; special gatherings; and moments of blessing and grace.  This simple action, which we teach to children at an early age, invokes a connection with the passion of Jesus.

We adorn our homes with the Cross.  A crucifix is a common gift to a new home; crosses are placed in bedrooms and common areas as a reminder that Jesus is the source of our help and strength.

We adorn ourselves with the Cross as well:  a crucifix on a chain; a cross in our pocket; earrings; rings; bracelets; and all the extra cards, bookmarks, figurines, and miscellaneous items that remind us that Jesus died on a Cross.

The passion we read every year on this day focuses our attention on the central mystery of our faith.  Out of love for us God sent His Son, Jesus, who gave his life on the Cross that we might have eternal life.  Through his suffering and death, we recognize that God has made a pathway possible that we might all journey through this life to the gates of Heaven.

The Cross teaches us many lessons:

  • Life is difficult, and at times painful
  • Weakness and sin are part of our experience
  • God identifies with our pain
  • God dies that we might have life

At the core of our teaching the Cross stands as the testament of God’s love for us.  Yet the Cross appears to be an embarrassment – after all, why would God (all powerful, all knowing, supreme) choose to be humiliated?  Does that not mean that God is weak?  Why could God not take away our sins in a way that showed majesty and splendor?

In reality, the weakness revealed in the Cross uncovers our frailty, not God’s.  Jesus endured the Cross because of our broken, wounded nature.  He carried the Cross because we were unable to – as St. Paul writes “The wages of sin is death” in Romans 6:23 – and he bore the suffering, pain, and grief that are the natural result of our sinfulness.  God is not weak, rather God takes on our weakness so that we can be made whole.

The Cross proclaims the truth that God meets us where we are in life.  In our weakness, in our humiliation, in our low moments of doubt and sin God comes to us.  Jesus, like us in every way but sin, understands our pain because through his Cross he shares in the suffering of the world.  He knows us, loves us, and saves us through his Cross.

Every time we make the sign of the Cross may we recall what the Lord endured for us.  Through the Cross we discover our strength as we trust in God’s love and  seek to follow that love as we journey through this life toward the world to come.

We adore you, O Christ, and we praise you.  Because by your Holy Cross you have redeemed the world!