Life on the Chrism Trail

Homily for the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

World Marriage Sunday

February 14, 2021
Saint Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Leviticus 13:1-2, 44-46
Psalm 32:1-2, 5, 11
1 Corinthians 10:31-11:1
Mark 1:40-45

The first reading from Leviticus and today’s reading from the Gospel of Mark are related in that they both involve leprosy and its effects on participation in the community. Leprosy in the Bible is not always the condition known to us as Hansen’s disease, but it is always a visible skin defect. Leprosy in the Bible is presented as an exterior blemish, a disorder of surfaces, a superficial disfigurement, and it never seems to go away.

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Homily for the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

February 7, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Job 7:1-4, 6-7
Psalm 147:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
1 Corinthians 9:16-19, 22-23
Mark 1:29-39

Shakespeare’s character Edmund in King Lear says, “when we are sick in fortune, often the surfeit of our own behavior, we make guilty of our disasters the sun, the moon, and the stars: as if we were villains by necessity, fools by heavenly compulsion; knaves and treachers by spherical predominance; drunkards, liars, and adulterers by enforced obedience of planetary influence.”

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Homily for Friday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time

Mass for Seminarians of the Diocese of Fort Worth

January 29, 2021
Saint Joseph’s Seminary College
Covington, Louisiana

Hebrews 10:32-39
Psalm 37:3-6, 23-24, 39-40
Mark 4:26-34

We read in the Letter to the Hebrews today, “Therefore, do not throw away your confidence; it will have great recompense. You need endurance to do the will of God and receive what he has promised.” 

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Homily for the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

January 24, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Jonah 3:1-5, 10
Psalm 25:4-5, 6-7, 8-9
1 Corinthians 7:29-31
Mark 1:14-20

Three days in the belly of a giant fish, three days of walking and preaching through Nineveh, and three days in the tomb are three touchstones for our prayerful reflection on this Third Sunday of Ordinary Time. I have three points for our reflection: resistance, resentment, and repentance. 

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Homily for the Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

January 17, 2021
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

1 Samuel 3:3b-10, 19
Psalm 40:2, 4, 7-9, 10
1 Corinthians 6:13c-15a, 17-20
John 1:35-42

Last Sunday, the Church invited us to reflect on the sacrament of Baptism as we celebrated the end of the Christmas season with the Baptism of the Lord. This weekend we begin Ordinary Time. The Church offers us these readings for reflection on vocation and service. Vocation and service follow sacramentally from Baptism in the sacraments of Matrimony and Holy Orders as the ordinary means by which Christ offers us His grace. 

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Homily for the Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

October 25, 2020
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Exodus 22:20-26
Psalm 18:2-4, 47, 51
1 Thessalonians 1:5c-10
Matthew 22:34-40

In today’s first reading from the Book of Exodus the Lord seriously reminds His people that they were once aliens and poor, and that reminder easily applies to us. “You shall not molest or oppress an alien, for you were once aliens yourselves in the land of Egypt. You shall not wrong any widow or orphan. If ever you wrong them and they cry out to me, I will surely hear their cry.

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Homily for the Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

October 18, 2020
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Isaiah 45:1, 4-6
Psalm 96:1, 3-5, 7-10
1 Thessalonians 1:1-5b
Matthew 22:15-21

In 589 B.C., the Babylonians conquered the Israelites and took many of them back to Babylon. Fifty years later, the Persians led by Cyrus the Great conquered the Babylonians. The Persian victory gave the Israelites hope that they might be set free. Cyrus was neither a Jew nor a believer, but the Israelites saw him as being sent to carry out God’s plans.

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Homily for the Twenty-eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time

October 11, 2020
St. Patrick Cathedral
Fort Worth, Texas

Isaiah 25:6-10a
Psalm 23:1-3a, 3b-4, 5, 6
Philippians 4:12-14, 19-20
Matthew 22:1-14

When I was seven years old, Sister Edward Clare prepared me and my classmates to receive our First Holy Communion. This preparation involved her preparing us for our first Confession. Sister made great efforts to prepare us in such a way as to draw us closer to Christ. For weeks, she walked us through the process of making an examination of conscience by reviewing our lives considering each of the Ten Commandments.

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