Homilies

Homily for November 2, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
All Souls Day
November 2, 2008

In recent years archeologists discovered something remarkable when they were working in an ancient and long-ago abandoned Roman sewer. They found a very large head, a colossal stone head.
The head had been removed from some public statue. They recognized the head to represent the Emperor Constantine.
There were statues of other dead emperors. This one commemorated the first Christian emperor.

Homily for October 26, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
30th Sunday
October 26, 2008

As we read the gospels, we join the company of Jesus and his disciples. In this way he speaks to us and we personally witness his ministry to the sick and the poor. His words and his example awaken us and deepen our faith.
There are three important questions that Jesus asks us in our gospel journey with him. The first is from the first chapter of John’s gospel when we first encounter Jesus. He asks us, “What are you looking for?” These are the very first words Jesus speaks in John’s gospel.

Homily for October 19, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
29th Sunday
October 19, 2008

In today’s gospel Jesus responds to his adversaries who were trying to entrap him with a controversial question about the payment of taxes to the Romans who were occupying their country.
Holding a Roman coin in his hands, Jesus says, “Render to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and to God what belongs to God.”

This was and continues to be a loaded statement, somewhat like another saying of Jesus, “You cannot serve two masters.” It’s about making a choice, a sometimes difficult and risky choice.

Homily for October 12, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
28th Sunday
October 12, 2008

One of my favorite spiritual quotes is from St. Augustine. He said, “Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in thee.”
In reflecting on today’s scripture readings, I want to take Augustine’s words and change them a bit without changing their meaning.
I say, “Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our hearts are hungry until they feed on thee.” Today’s first reading from Isaiah and the gospel tell of banquets that the Lord prepares for us.

Homily for October 5, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
27th Sunday
October 5, 2008

Our first reading today begins, “Let me now sing of my friend…” I will sing of our saintly friend whose feast falls each year on October 4 in loving memory of his homecoming to heaven in 1226. (He actually died on October 3). He is St. Francis of Assisi.
While I’m at it, I also want to recognize another great saint, St. Benedict. These two were the founders of two significant spiritual movements in the Catholic Church. It is interesting to note the relationship of the two.

Homily for September 28, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
26th Sunday
September 28, 2008

In Nazareth there is a grand basilica that was built 40 years ago. It was built over the cave where it is said that the Angel Gabriel came to speak to the young girl Mary about being the mother of the Messiah.
Earlier churches had preceded this basilica at this same location.
There is another but much smaller church built over an ancient town well where, according to another tradition, Gabriel appeared to Mary when she went there to draw water.

Homily for September 21, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
25th Sunday
September 21, 2008

Today the economy is a hot topic. With the bankruptcy of some of the major Wall Street firms, the stock market zooming downward, and hundreds of billions of federal money attempting to prop up our financial system, the economy has become a key point in the current political debate.

Homily for September 14, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
Feast of the Holy Cross
September 14, 2008

At the top of the Aventine hill in the city of Rome you can find the church of Saint Sabina. It overlooks the Tiber River and gives you a glorious view of St. Peter’s Basilica from a distance of about a mile.
Saint Sabina is considered to be one of the most beautiful basilicas in Rome to have survived from the early Christian period.

Homily for September 7, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
23rd Sunday
September 7, 2008

“Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.” These words of St. Paul in the second reading today are meant to be the message to guide our lives.

Six years ago a special award was given to an old couple, Tony and Evelyn Messuri, from a small town in Idaho. They were given the Lumen Christi Award by the Catholic Extension Magazine. Lumen Christi is Latin for Light of Christ.

Homily for August 23-24, 2008

Father Tom’s Homily
21st Sunday
August 24, 2008

Fifty-two years ago, in August of 1956, I had a minor role at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. I was 21 at the time and on summer vacation in the midst of six years of major seminary.
That summer I was working in Chicago and living with my brother Jack. When I read in the Tribune that they were looking for drivers at the convention, I decided to quit my job at the stock yards and deal with politicians instead of cattle.

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