Shepherds of Christ  
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July 28, 2008

July 29th Holy Spirit Novena
Scripture selection is Day 5 Period I.

The Novena Rosary Mysteries  
for July 29th are Joyful.

 

China Retreat

August 10, 11, 12, 13

Exposed Eucharist

 

 

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Help us publish Fr. Joe's homilies for you and the priests.

Will change our lives

Focused on the Word

    

   

Given July 27, 2008

                    It is our responsibility as Catholics
                to go out and spread the good news —
                we are commissioned in Baptism —
 

                    We are failing to tell others the good
                news about the Catholic Church — we need
                to spread the Ecce Fides and the Blue Books —
                we are focused on ourselves —

 

Romans 8: 28-30

We are well aware that God works with those who love him, those who have been called in accordance with his purpose, and turns everything to their good. He decided beforehand who were the ones destined to be moulded to the pattern of his Son, so that he should be the eldest of many brothers; it was those so destined that he called; those that he called, he justified, and those that he has justified he has brought into glory.

   

                    If we have the light in us — wisdom —
                we would work harder to spread the good
                news

                We give into negative thinking — dark thoughts —
                worrying about what we don't want to
                happen rather than thinking and talking about
                spreading God's Kingdom on earth

 

Matthew 14: 13-21

When Jesus received this news he withdrew by boat to a lonely place where they could be by themselves. But the crowds heard of this and, leaving the towns, went after him on foot. So as he stepped ashore he saw a large crowd; and he took pity on them and healed their sick. 

    When evening came, the disciples went to him and said, ‘This is a lonely place, and time has slipped by; so send the people away, and they can go to the villages to buy themselves some food.’ Jesus replied, ‘There is no need for them to go: give them something to eat yourselves.’ But they answered, ‘All we have with us is five loaves and two fish.’ So he said, ‘Bring them here to me.’ He gave orders that the people were to sit down on the grass; then he took the five loaves and the two fish, raised his eyes to heaven and said the blessing. And breaking the loaves he handed them to his disciples, who gave them to the crowds. They all ate as much as they wanted, and they collected the scraps left over, twelve baskets full. Now about five thousand men had eaten, to say nothing of women and children.

   

                Sing song City of God it tells us
                    so clearly —

                Why worry about what we don't want
                to happen — lets think of the light —
                God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit live in the
                graced baptized soul

                    Lets focus on this
                    Loving one another

                    Loving means talking about the great
                gifts in the Catholic Church — the great
                gifts of the Shepherds of Christ

                    Praying the prayers in the Prayer
                Manual and going to daily Mass and
                doing daily adoration have changed so
                many people to be filled with light
                and love for the Eucharist after they read
                the Blue Books —
 

                    Talk about building the Kingdom
                of God — God wants us to keep the Virgin Mary
                Building to help people be children of the
                Light — filled with God's grace — from going
                to the Eucharist — and receiving the sacraments —

                    God renewed the earth at the time of
                Noah and gave us a covenant with the sign
                of the rainbow —

                    When people go to the Virgin Mary
                Building they get the Blue Books telling
                them about God's abundant love —
                the love of Jesus truly present in
                the Eucharist —

 

 

                    We think because we have been taught
                by the Blue Books others may need a
                reminder or
                we are afraid we will be rejected —

                We are the dispensers of the Mass Book
                and Blue Books and only a minute amount
                of people have gotten them — you were
                trained over years to spread them to the
                rest of the world — we have reached a
                few sands on the seashore —

                    We cannot give into negative thinking —
                change your thoughts — life is short —
                we need to reach the souls with the good
                news — the light in us —

                    You become what you think about —
                day long — year after year — negative
                thoughts of things that are about
                worries that never happen —

                    See Christ teaching us
                    Little children ready to be taught

 

                   

                Jesus loves us so much —
                    He is truly present —
                    He comes to us Body, Blood, Soul and
                        Divinity in the Eucharist

 

 

                We were taught to teach others —
                Jesus loves us so much He chose us —

                We have reached "a drop in the bucket"
                    with the gifts of the Catholic
                    Church, the Eucharist, Baptism —

               
                Why are we afraid — to be rejected??

                In the beatitudes it says —

 

Matthew 5: 11-12

Blessed are you when people abuse you and persecute you and
speak all kinds of calumny against you falsely on my account.
Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven; this
is how they persecuted the prophets before you.

 

                Sing the Beatitudes

               
                   

 

  

22nd Sunday

FR. JOE'S HOMILIES (Rita's brother)

 

Jeremiah 20: 7-9

You have seduced me, Yahweh,
    and I have let myself be seduced;
you have overpowered me:
    you were the stronger.
I am a laughing-stock all day long,
they all make fun of me.
For whenever I speak, I have to howl
and proclaim, ‘Violence and ruin!’
For me , Yahweh’s word has been the cause
of insult and derision all day long.
I would say to myself,
    ‘I will not think about him,
I will not speak in his name any more,’
but then there seemed to be a fire
    burning in my heart,
imprisoned in my bones.
The effort to restrain it wearied me,
I could not do it.

 

Romans 12: 1-2

I urge you, then, brothers, remembering the mercies of God, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, dedicated and acceptable to God; that is the kind of worship for you, as sensible people. Do not model your behaviour on the contemporary world, but let the renewing of your minds transform you, so that you may discern for yourselves what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and mature.

 

Matthew 16: 21-27

From then onwards Jesus began to make it clear to his disciples that he was destined to go to Jerusalem and suffer grievously at the hands of the elders and chief priests and scribes and to be put to death and to be raised up on the third day. Then, taking him aside, Peter started to rebuke him. ‘Heaven preserve you, Lord,’ he said, ‘this must not happen to you.’ But he turned and said to Peter, ‘Get behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle in my path, because you are thinking not as God thinks but as human beings do.’

Then Jesus said to his disciples, ‘If anyone wants to be a follower of mine, let him renounce himself and take up his cross and follow me. Anyone who wants to save his life will lose it; but anyone who loses his life for my sake will find it. What, then, will anyone gain by winning the whole world and forfeiting his life? Or what can anyone offer in exchange for his life? ‘For the Son of man is going to come in the glory of his Father with his angels, and then he will reward each one according to his behaviour.

 

 

 Homily by Fr. Joe

August 28, 2005

INTRODUCTION: (Jeremiah 20, 7-9) Our first reading goes back about 600 B.C. The author of our passage is the prophet Jeremiah. Apparently he thought that people would be grateful to him for speaking God’s word to them. But his job of telling them to change their ways and get right with God only made them hate him. The people ridiculed him, threw him in jail and even tried to kill him. We hear him complaining to God “You duped me! You tricked me, God!” I’m sure it wasn’t the first time God heard the complaint that life is not fair. Jesus’ faithfulness to his mission would bring him suffering too, but Jesus was well aware of what was going to happen to him as we hear him warn his disciples in today’s gospel. In last Sunday’s gospel Jesus praised Peter for acknowledging Jesus as the Messiah. Jesus even promised Peter the keys to the kingdom of heaven. But Peter wasn’t ready for all this talk about suffering and when Peter tried to talk Jesus out of the idea Jesus called him Satan. That’s because Peter was trying to tempt Jesus away from being faithful to his calling.

HOMILY: (Matthew 16, 21-27) Jesus tells us “whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.” At the time St. Matthew was writing, this was literally true for many Christians. It still happens in some parts of the world that those who believe in Christ and follow him end up paying for it with their lives. Do not misunderstand Jesus’ statement. When Jesus said “whoever wishes to come after me must take up his cross and follow me,” that does not mean that if we decide not to follow him we’re not going to have any problems or crosses. If we choose not to follow him in order to avoid the difficulties that might be demanded of us, problems will find us anyway. Problems and crosses are part of everyone’s life, whether they believe in Christ or not. And since Christ came to show us the way to peace and joy, avoiding the hardships involved with following him will only cost us more dearly in the long run.

Religion and philosophy have always tried to understand the mystery of suffering, especially the difficult problem of why good people suffer. So many different explanations are out there. None of them can take all the mystery out of suffering. For me, the best answer is found in the gospel. Jesus through his cross and resurrection has given us hope in our pain and hopelessness and has shown us suffering can lead to glory, if we will accept our crosses along with him. That requires total faith in him.

Now Peter, whom we heard in today’s gospel, had faith in Jesus. If you recall last week’s gospel he said of Jesus: “you are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” That profession of faith was made just minutes before the scene in today’s gospel. When Jesus began talking about suffering Peter objected. Peter professed that he believed in Jesus as the Messiah, the Christ, but Peter didn’t think the Messiah should have to suffer. Peter had Jesus’ career path all figured out. Peter’s faith in Jesus was way too limited. He couldn’t see what Jesus was seeing and was trying to tell them. He couldn’t see that if Jesus was determined to be faithful to his mission of teaching and healing, which he was, being faithful would cost him his life. Jesus scolded Peter and called him Satan because he was trying to tempt Jesus away from faithfully staying with his calling. Jesus told him: “you are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.”

That sounds almost unfair of Jesus to say: “You’re thinking not as God does!” How are we expected to think like God thinks? If we tried really hard, do you suppose we could? With only our human brains to think with, we can only think like human beings do. But there is something that helps us think like God does. It’s faith! Faith enables us to go beyond our own limited human capabilities. It’s just like learning from any great teacher, when God tells us something and we truly believe it, we’re seeing things and knowing things God sees and knows, even if we can’t fully grasp everything at once. We’re beginning to think like God does. Now I interrupt this homily for a brief commercial.

If we are grateful to have the faith and hope in Christ that we have, isn’t this something we would like to share? One way we do this is though our RCIA program which begins this Wednesday evening. Everyone who has gone through our RCIA reports having enjoyed it. If you know anyone who might be interested in knowing more about Christ and the Church, please invite them or better yet, come with them. In a similar vein, we still have room in our school for some more students. All our children receive an excellent education as well as an education about Jesus Christ and his teachings, whether they are Catholic or not. We have a great principal and a great staff. And if a family needs help with tuition there is a very good possibility of getting it. End of commercial.

Coming to Mass, as we are doing now, teaches us to think as God does. We listen to what he tells us in the Scriptures. And we celebrate in a mysterious way Jesus’ death and resurrection. In that event we are given a vision of God’s plan for all who live in his grace. Amen.

  

  

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