Life on the Chrism Trail

Homily for the Fifth Sunday of Easter

May 2, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Acts 9:26-31
Psalm 22:26-27, 28, 30, 31-32
I John 3:18-24
John 15:1-8

The Acts of the Apostles tells us today about Saint Paul’s entry into the Church. Three years after the Lord had appeared to him on the road to Damascus, Paul presented himself to the disciples in Jerusalem. But his reputation as Saul the Pharisee had preceded him, and the leaders had trouble believing that he had changed from persecuting the Church to be its defender.

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Fourth Sunday of Easter: Good Shepherd Sunday

April 25, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Acts 4:8-12
Psalm 118:1, 8-9, 21-23, 26, 28, 29
1 John 3:1-2
John 10:11-18

In our Gospel on this Fourth Sunday of Easter, Jesus identifies Himself as the Good Shepherd. In so doing, Jesus also speaks of two characteristics of His mission as the Good Shepherd. First, He knows His sheep with a closeness conveyed by the statement that He knows the name of each of His sheep and that in turn His sheep recognize His voice, and they follow. 

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Homily for the Mass of Reparation for Victims and Survivors of Abuse

April 22, 2021
St. Maria Goretti Catholic Church
Arlington, Texas

Acts 8:26-40
Psalm 66
1 Corinthians 15:20-26, 28
Matthew 18:1-5, 10, 12-14

Philip, one of the first deacons in the life of the Church called and ordained to minister to those in the periphery, is guided by an angel of God along the road to Gaza to encounter a man from Ethiopia whom the author of the Acts of the Apostles describes as an official bureaucrat of the Candace (the title of the reigning Queen of a tribe from Ethiopia) and as a eunuch. The Scripture also tells us that Philip encounters this man reading aloud from the prophet Isaiah,

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Homily for the Third Sunday of Easter

April 18, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Acts 3:13-15, 17-19
Psalm 4:2, 4, 7-9
1 John 2:1-5a
Luke 24:35-48

While the disciples from the road to Emmaus were describing how they recognized Jesus in the breaking of the bread, Jesus suddenly appears among them and speaks to them the words, “Peace be with you.” The disciples thought they were seeing a ghost, but Jesus showed them His wounds and told them to touch Him to prove He was not a ghost. He even asked them for something to eat.

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Homily for the Second Sunday of Easter, Sunday of Divine Mercy

April 11, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Acts 4:32-35
Psalm 118
1 John 5:1-6
John 20:19-31

The first words attributed to the Risen Lord are “peace be with you.”  One can presume that the community of Apostles and other disciples that had gathered behind locked doors was in some state of disquiet. One reason was fear and confusion at Jesus’ death, but another may have been divisiveness and resentment since Jesus next speaks about forgiveness. He says, “If you forgive others’ sins they are forgiven; if you hold them bound, they are held bound.” To receive fully Christ’s resurrection gift of peace, requires that we also accept forgiveness and exercise our Christian capacity to forgive.

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Homily for Holy Saturday at the Easter Vigil

April 3, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Genesis 1:1-2:2
Psalm 104:1-2, 5-6, 10, 12, 13-14, 24, 35
Exodus 14:15-15:1
Exodus 15:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 17-18
Isaiah 54:5-14
Psalm 30:2, 4, 5-6, 11-2, 13
Romans 6:3-11
Mark 16:1-7

When the Sabbath was over, three women gathered the ingredients necessary to bury the body of Jesus. They went to the tomb early and thought of a few practical points they had overlooked. What about the heavy stone sealing the tomb? What about the guards? What about the official seals that had been put on the tomb? But when they arrived, the soldiers were gone, and the stone was rolled away.

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Homily for Good Friday of the Lord’s Passion

April 2, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Isaiah 52:13-53:12
Psalm 31:2, 6, 12-13, 15-16, 17, 25
Hebrews 4:14-16; 5:7-9
John 18:1-19:42

“In the days when Christ was in the flesh, He offered prayers and supplications with loud cries and tears to the one who was able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His reverence. Son though He was, He learned obedience from what He suffered; and when He was made perfect, He became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey Him.”

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