Vineyards of En-Gedi | Homiletic Explorations into Communion, community, and evangelization
193
home,paged,page-template,page-template-blog-compound,page-template-blog-compound-php,page,page-id-193,paged-18,page-paged-18,ajax_updown_fade,page_not_loaded,,qode-title-hidden,qode_grid_1300,qode-content-sidebar-responsive,transparent_content,qode-theme-ver-17.2,qode-theme-bridge,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.6,vc_responsive
  • The practical spirituality and ministry implied in the I Corinthians 5 reading is too much to pass up; the gospel story of the prodigal son provides a concrete example of what Paul is talking about for the Church. Reconciliation shows itself in the qualities of justice, joy, thanksgiving, humility, and wisdom. The joy in this Laeta...

  • Lent means to transform us into conformity with Christ in the flesh and in the resurrection. So the Lenten sojourner witnesses the transfiguration of Christ, and thus is enabled to enter into a deeper understanding of th Paschal Mystery for one’s self. Thus, a significant milestone in the Lenten walk with Jesus is attained. Lent ...

  • Human life is frail, given to the distractions of the world and subject to the whim of bad luck and needing to be set free from the oppression of the world’s domination. God appears to Moses and in the person of Jesus Christ to save us from slavery to sin and to accompany us in mercy on our own journey to Jerusalem. The readings ...

  • The gospel story is so well known and so many readers get fixated on whatever Jesus mysteriously wrote in the dust of the Temple pavement. Sometimes the main message of the personal encounter with Jesus is missed, but perhaps this is the binding link for the readings. If anything, the highlights of the Philippians reading are key t...

  • The readings challenge us to think about the dynamics and psychology of sin from the view of these ancient texts. Recognition of the truth of the human condition and authentic honesty about ourselves will result in an increase of yearning for Jesus. Sin is never comfortable to discuss, and yet it should not be in a “hell fire and...

  • The Ash Wednesday proclamation focused on prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, each the opposite of money, power, and fame. The gospel makes us consider the ways of the world as opposed to the ways of God. All God’s blessings belong to God; we return our money, power, fame and we praise God alone. How do these readings mature us in o...

  • Lectionary CatechesisFr. Alan Hartway, CPPS Guardian Angels Parish in Mead, CO Thus Lent begins. God desires conversion of heart; our Lenten practices are directed to that goal or end. At the same time, the three penances commended by Jesus are done for others who have less than we have ourselves; at any angle, penance has som...

  • The anointed one, foretold in Cyrus according to Isaiah, and fulfilled in Jesus Christ comes to save us through the trial of baptism, death to sin and an assent to God’s grace in the resurrection. The readings are about lamentation for the effects of sin; this is what Pope Francis means by a renewal of compunction, the gift of te...

Homiletics Notes / 12.08.2019

The Gospel this Sunday follows immediately on the parable of the foolish rich man and the wicked servants. The two sayings of Jesus modulate the passage. First, where your treasure is there your heart will be, and second much will be required of the person entrusted with much. Here, his images of fire cast down on the earth and division are a bit apocalyptic and harsh. In the first reading we are presented with the persecution of Jeremiah who was left to die in a cistern. Jeremiah had lit a fire by the power of his words and symbolic actions in the imagination of the people. He is not a man of the status quo, or else he would have accommodated himself to King Zedekiah. The small kingdom of Judah was prepared for war, there being no peace. Zedekiah had to walk the fine line of pleasing his courtiers and the king of Babylon, against whom he eventually rebelled and lost his kingdom. Fire on the earth, indeed, as Jerusalem was breached and conquered. The second reading offers us the image of the "cloud of witnesses", who are of course the saints who have gone before us. This myriad surrounding us encourage us to put off sin and persevere ourselves ion the good race. This cloud makes me remember the divine presence of God during the Exodus in the desert, encouraging the people to endure the journey. God appears to the people as a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. The fire in the belly of our cultural moment is our yearning for racial justice, our desire to welcome the immigrant, our work for just wages and the dignity of work, and the fire in our environmental catastrophe that we've ourselves have created. ...

Homiletics Notes / 09.08.2019

Everyone likes an orderly home, just not the effort and work that it takes to keep it that way. Owning a home is a huge investment, not just of money, but of time and constant attention. The list of "honey-do's" is endless, and something is always falling apart. Care, stewardship, time. When the master returns from the wedding, he is so happy to find his house in order that he serves his own servants. One can imagine here a late night scene when the master arrives; he is sated with food and wine. The temptation would be to head for the bed. He does the unexpected, and Luke uses this motif in his gospel of reversal of the normal way of things. The master of the house is of course the Lord. dHe has two concerns: that things are in order and that the house has been kept safe from intruders, the thief, who is of course the devil. The house is the church. Notice in the explanation Jesus gives, that the wicked servant deploys the same logic of eat, drink, and be merry, that we saw in the previous Sunday's gospel in the rich man, building bigger barns. A golden thread that runs through these sayings of Jesus is the word "faith" and its related words. This is one of the valuable qualities of the good servant, as for Abraham in the second reading, and as for th ancestors in the first reading book of wisdom. ...

Homiletics Notes / 08.08.2019

By faith, Abraham accomplished great things. In faith, we become aware in our intellect of the things we hope for, that they are real. The fact of faith, something God given in our inmost being, along with intellect, and is the proof itself that things exist which the senses do not know. The attractive verse is "acknowledged themselves to be strangers and aliens on earth" and "they desire . . . a heavenly homeland." Today, we have little clue of what it means to be strangers and aliens, and perhaps even less so yearning for heaven, which we think to ourselves we have already established here on earth. There are those who know these things, but it is not the white American. This loss of faith permeates our society in a very negative and destructive way. For these are the temptations: to return to the materialism in which we find our meaning and to fail to give everything over to God. That last verse sums this up. Abraham reasoned that God can raise the dead; this is his faith. He received Isaac back as a symbol. A symbol is the two broken halves of a bulla, a clay or wax seal identifying property and ownership, that are brought back together to provide the proof because the two halves fit one another. In other words for the father and the son, the two are one and whole. For Abraham, all this "fits" and makes sense out of the narrative of his experiences and life. Therefore, he believes. ...