A convicting message for all of us to reflect on, since we should all care for one another:
"Woe to the shepherds of Israel who have been pasturing themselves! Should not shepherds, rather, pasture sheep? You have fed off their milk, worn their wool, and slaughtered the fatlings, but the sheep you have not pastured. You did not strengthen the weak nor heal the sick nor bind up the injured. You did not bring back the strayed nor seek the lost, but you lorded it over them harshly and brutally. So they were scattered for lack of a shepherd, and became food for all the wild beasts. My sheep were scattered and wandered over all the mountains and high hills; my sheep were scattered over the whole earth, with no one to look after them or to search for them.
Beginning this Sunday, Sept 17th, I encourage everyone to join me in praying for the Presidential election coming in November. Perhaps you would like to begin a 54-day rosary novena, which if begun today would end near Election day. Or if you prefer a shorter prayer — the Our Lady Un-Doer of Knots novena is a powerful prayer for this nation. I have also provided the Election Prayer for Life so you can pray this prayer as often as you can.
As Catholic Americans, not only should we vote, but we have an obligation to vote. And not only to vote, but we have the obligation (not just the encouragement) of our faith to influence how we vote. The United Conference of Catholic Bishops present it this way, we have dual heritage "as both faithful Catholics and American citizens with rights and duties as participants in the civil order...It is as citizens faithful to the Lord Jesus that we contribute most effectively to the civil order." If we really believe that the Church has what the world needs, we must reflect that in how we vote.READ MORE
Did you know that we have a parish library?! Located in the Parish Office, it is usually open whenever the office is open. If you are interested in reading more to enhance your spiritual life, come check out some books! We have nearly a thousand books on a variety of topics. If you don't have a lot of time to read, but spend a lot of time in the car, we have CDs that can be checked out as well. The last time I went on a little vacation, I checked out St. Therese's Story of a Soul and St. Francis de Sales' Introduction to the Devout Life. Also, there is a Best of Catholic Answers Live CD set. Additionally, for those of you interested in our Called and Gifted workshop, we have two CD sets that are essential for you to be ready for the workshop, which starts in two weeks.READ MORE
From a spiritual testament of Saint Louis to his son
I read this as the homily on Thursday, August 25th, for the feast of Saint Louis, King of France. What an inspiring witness he is of putting Christ first in his life, being a parent to children, and a true leader in the position God put him in. May he inspire you too.
My dearest son, my first instruction is that you should love the Lord your God with allyour heart and all your strength. Without this there is no salvation. Keep yourself, my son,from everything that you know displeases God, that is to say, from every mortal sin. You shouldpermit yourself to be tormented by every kind of martyrdom before you would allow yourself tocommit a mortal sin.READ MORE
Whoever I may be, Lord, I lie exposed to your scrutiny.
Lord, you know me. Let me know you. Let me come to know you even as I am known. You are the strength of my soul; enter it and make it a place suitable for your dwelling, a possession without spot or blemish. This is my hope and the reason I speak. In this hope I rejoice, when I rejoice rightly. As for the other things of this life, the less they deserve tears, the more likely will they be lamented; and the more they deserve tears, the less likely will men sorrow for them. For behold, you have loved the truth, because the one who does what is true enters into the light. I wish to do this truth before you alone by praising you, and before a multitude of witnesses by writing of you.READ MORE
All priests are expected to pray the Liturgy of the Hours every day. The Church also encourages the faithful to participate in this form of prayer (the free app ibreviary makes it very convenient). On August 8 , the feast of St. Dominic, I was inspired by the second reading in the Office of Readings of the Liturgy of the Hours. St. Dominic, you may recall, was the founder of the Order of Preachers and has been called the great evangelizer (with St. Francis). He essentially went door to door evangelizing and sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ. He is the one to whom Mary gave the Rosary in order to help him pray along his travels and to teach others to pray and meditate on the life of Christ. The following is an excerpt about St. Dominic from the reading:READ MORE
Have you been thinking that you want to do more to serve God and His Church, but you don't know what you are supposed to do? Have you wondered how you are called to build the Kingdom of God on earth? Did you want to go to the live Called and Gifted workshop last year but weren't able to make it that weekend?
If you answered, "Yes" to any of these questions, then you are invited to get to know the specific gifts (also known as charisms) that God has given to you specifically at your baptism. Knowing your charisms can help give insight to how God is calling you to serve Him and build His Church. Learning about the charisms has broadened my understanding of myself as a Catholic Christian as well as my appreciation for others and their charisms. This understanding has helped me better appreciate and love God's great design for His Church—how each and every baptized person has a role to play and we (the Church) are missing out if we don't know and use our charisms. The way I see it, as your Pastor, I am to "equip the holy ones (you) for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ." Therefore, one of the ways I know how to "equip" you is through Called and Gifted.READ MORE
From a catechetical instruction by Saint Cyril of Jerusalem, bishop (Cat 18:23-25: PG 33, 1043-1047)
The Church is called Catholic, or universal, because it has spread throughout the entire world, from one end of the earth to the other. Again, it is called Catholic because it teaches fully and unfailingly all the doctrines which ought to be brought to men's knowledge, whether concerned with visible or invisible things, with the realities of heaven or the things of earth. Another reason for the name Catholic is that the Church brings under religious obedience all classes of men, rulers and subjects, learned and unlettered. Finally, it deserves the title Catholic because it heals and cures unrestrictedly every type of sin that can be committed in soul or in body, and because it possesses within itself every kind of virtue that can be named, whether exercised in actions or in words or in some kind of spiritual charism.READ MORE
For the earlier part of my life I lived in the Northwest, spending a fair bit of time helping out the family farm in Montana. Once I finished homeschooling my way through everything prior to college, I went to Christendom College in Front Royal, VA, which I graduated from in 2013 with a BA in History. After living on the east coast for nearly two-and-a-half years, I returned home to my family in Montana. Shortly after moving home, I got engaged to my wonderful fiancée, Therese, who moved down to Phoenix for her work. Through a process of prayer, discernment, and job hunting, God provided the opportunity for me to join the wonderful staff here at Corpus Christi. I moved down to Phoenix mid-July, following my fiancée, and feel very blessed to be a part of this devout parish. I really enjoy music and have studied piano and singing extensively, and have also learned to play the organ. I look forward to seeing you at Mass and around the parish!READ MORE
From a letter to Diognetus written in the 2nd century. It was true then. Is it true for you today?
Christians are indistinguishable from other men either by nationality, language or customs. They do not inhabit separate cities of their own, or speak a strange dialect, or follow some outlandish way of life. Their teaching is not based upon reveries inspired by the curiosity of men. Unlike some other people, they champion no purely human doctrine. With regard to dress, food and manner of life in general, they follow the customs of whatever city they happen to be living in, whether it is Greek or foreign.READ MORE
For non-Catholics, one of the strangest aspects of Catholic faith is its doctrine of suffering. It is not strange that Catholics should concern themselves with suffering. Suffering is a universal human problem. Some religious traditions (like Buddhism) are almost wholly concerned with the problem of suffering: how to eliminate it, endure it, or even deny it. But Catholics seem strange because, at times, they embrace it. "I rejoice in my sufferings," says St. Paul. (Colossians 1:24)READ MORE
An excerpt from a letter to the Romans by Saint Ignatius of Antioch, bishop and martyr
My earthly desires have been crucified.
The delights of this world and all its kingdoms will not profit me. I would prefer to die in Jesus Christ than to rule over all the earth. I seek him who died for us, I desire him who rose for us. I am in the throes of being born again. Bear with me, my brothers; do not keep me from living, do not wish me to die. I desire to belong to God; do not give me over to the world, and do not seduce me with perishable things. Let me see the pure light; when I am there, I shall be truly a man at last. Let me imitate the sufferings of my God. If anyone has God in him, let him understand what I want and have sympathy for me, knowing what drives me on.READ MORE
An excerpt from Our First, Most Cherished Liberty, a statement on Religious Liberty from the United States Council of Catholic Bishops
In 1634, a mix of Catholic and Protestant settlers arrived at St. Clement's Island in Southern Maryland from England aboard the Ark and the Dove. They had come at the invitation of the Catholic Lord Baltimore, who had been granted Maryland by the Protestant King Charles I of England. While Catholics and Protestants were killing each other in Europe, Lord Baltimore imagined Maryland as a society where people of different faiths could live together peacefully. This vision was soon codified in Maryland's 1649 Act Concerning Religion (also called the "Toleration Act"), which was the first law in our nation's history to protect an individual's right to freedom of conscience.READ MORE