Tag Archives: Unity

Daily Mass: United in the love of Jesus Christ. Catholic Inspiraiton

Jesus speaks of our need to unite our hearts in love, and he offers the example of the Heavenly Father to inspire us.  May God’s love empower each of us to look for ways that we can unite when we are confronted with division.

Mass Readings – Thursday of the 7th Week of Easter

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

Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


Daily Mass: The Lord prays for us. Catholic Inspiration

In the Gospel of John we hear today how the Lord prays to his Heavenly Father for the disciples.  In other words, the Lord prays for us!  May this personal relationship we have with Jesus draw us closer to the Christ and one another.

Mass Readings – Tuesday of the 7th Week of Easter

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

Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts

Christ on the Mount of Olives, Josef Untersberger.


The Power and Unity of Pentecost

Study:  Reflect on a time when you encountered a difficult experience.  Where did you find your strength?

Pray:  Ask for the Holy Spirit to help you, especially to unite with others in challenging situations.

Serve:  How can you help foster unity in your life?  What can you do to bring people together?

Mass Readings:

Pentecost Sunday at the Vigil Mass

Pentecost Sunday Extended Vigil

Pentecost Sunday Mass During the Day

It can be somewhat confusing to know what readings to follow – depending on the day and the options available a person can hear a number of different Scripture readings this weekend.  Stepping back for a moment, however, we can tease out some major themes that surface on this important feast of the Church:

  • Power – to face what comes before us with God’s strength
  • Unity – to join together beyond boundaries and divisions

In many respects this feast marks the birthday of the Church.  The disciples, having watched the Lord ascend to Heaven, are now “on their own” to carry out the Good News of Christ.  The point, of course, is that they are not alone!  Filled with the Holy Spirit their hearts are transformed and their lives forever changed.  They have become willing instruments empowered by the Spirit to speak and act for the glory of God.  They don’t look anything like their former selves – timid, fearful, and self-serving; they now fearlessly engage the world with the conviction that Jesus is Lord.

And as they are strengthened by the Spirit one sign increasingly becomes apparent – the unity of believers as a self evident sign that God’s grace is at work.  Several approaches underscore this sense of unity:

  • Understanding one another beyond the challenge of language
  • Working together as a body does with its many parts
  • Becoming spiritually fruitful
  • Forgiveness with one another

Language, cooperation, fruitfulness, and forgiveness are all hallmarks of the Spirit’s presence in our lives.  All are crucial and take an enormous amount of effort – supported by the POWER of the Holy Spirit!

Is there a place in our lives today that would benefit from unity?  Are there relationships and situations that require healing and strength to grow?  Do we recognize circumstances (perhaps beyond our control) that cry out for the Lord’s intervention?  If so, then we can confidently turn to the Spirit for the grace we need to face what lies before us.

Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love.  Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created, and you shall renew the face of the earth.  O God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit did instruct the hearts of the faithful , grant that by the same Spirit we may be truly wise, and ever rejoice in his consolation.  Through Christ our Lord.  Amen!


2nd Sunday of Easter: United in mind and heart

The unity of the disciples through gratitude, love and peace offers us an example of how we draw together today with the people God puts in our lives.  This is is not easy work…but it is worth it!

Mass Readings – 2nd Sunday of Easter

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

Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


2nd Sunday of Easter: One in heart and mind

Study: Where have I experienced profound moments of unity with others?

Pray:  Where do I see signs of disunity in my life?  Call upon the Lord for grace and strength.

Serve:  How can I help others grow closer together?  How can I foster unity?

Mass Readings – 2nd Sunday of Easter

“The community of believers was of one heart and mind…”  (Acts 4:32)

I marvel at the transformation of the disciples.  Before the resurrection of Jesus they were filled with fear, paralyzed by their own weakness and doubt; after the resurrection they are changed, as evidenced in even the basic ways they lived and worked together.

One heart and mind!

Unity can be challenging in even the best circumstances: we see things differently, hold our own unique values and principles, as well as personal tastes and interests.  Working together is tough, yet it is a common sign of holiness – the practical proof that we are doing our part to build the Lord’s kingdom here on earth.

What supports unity?  Jesus Christ!  Unity with Christ provides the grace for unity with Christ’s brothers and sisters; this clear sign of faith draws others to the Good News and fosters our community with one another.  Take a look at a few of the patterns that emerge in today’s readings:

  • 1st Reading – sharing according to need
  • Psalm – giving thanks to the Lord
  • 2nd Reading – love of God by keeping his commandments
  • Gospel – Christ’s peace that overcomes doubt

Another way to say it: Sharing, Gratitude, Love, Peace – which find their source in Jesus and flow through us to the those we meet.  I would suggest that the disciples used these building blocks to form the first elements of the Church, working together in unity with the grace of Christ to proclaim the Good News.

This work continues today.  We all know firsthand the effects of discord – where lives are broken and fragmented by selfishness, fear, hate, and a hardness of heart – yet we believe in something greater…Christ is triumphant!  Our response can mirror the disciples:

  • We acknowledge the obstacles in our lives
  • We turn to Jesus Christ and call upon his grace
  • We allow the Lord to work through us to unite with one another

May we bring these powerful blessings of the resurrection to our world today:

  • Sharing the gifts God has given us
  • Grateful for the blessings we have received from on high
  • Loving others as Christ loves us
  • Bringing the Lord’s peace to those before us

One heart and mind!

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

Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts

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

Note: This post was first published on April 12, 2015.


6th Sunday of the Year: Renewing relationships afflicted with suffering. Catholic Inspiration

Suffering affects our lives on many levels – body, mind, heart and soul – and it can weaken and wound our relationships with one another.  When we respond with compassion, help, unity and God’s grace we can restore what was broken with the healing power of Christ.

Mass Readings – 6th Sunday of the Year

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

Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


28th Sunday of the Year: The Lord’s Supper. Catholic Inspiration

Mass Readings – 28th Sunday of the Year

The Eucharist is a banquet that nourishes, celebrates and unites our lives.  Christ himself feeds us with his Body and Blood so that we might grow in grace.  Two simple questions follow from this great gift:

  1. Are we coming?
  2. Are we coming prepared?

For always remember that one day we will stand before the One who is the source of all grace…and what then will we say?

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

Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts