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-21,page-paged-21,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 / 06.01.2020

My estimate is that more than three quarters of the baptisms in the US are not done because of commitment to Christ and the church, but rather out of fear of original sin, which is proof to me that the church is still living in the context of a Jansenistic piety of the 1700s. We did such a good job of promoting the purification from original sin, that the real major theology of baptism and evangelization is far from the thoughts and heart of the people. This is a very sad state of affairs. Baptismal prep classes are all still based on this original sin proposition. Jesus is baptized for mission. Baptism is the first step of admission, the entry point, the beginning of the Christian life, which is always oriented toward God and the other. It is not about oneself. It follows the well worn processor John Cassian's three fold way: purification, illumination, and union, which is also the essence of the kerygma. The homily this week offers and opportunity to change all of that. In Matthew's account, the voice from heaven addresses the crowd. In Mark and Luke, the voice addresses Jesus personally; in John's gospel, the Baptism only recounts the incident to the crowds, and there is no mention of the voice from heaven. The descending dove appears in all the gospels. Have you heard this voice from? Do you have a vision of the reign of God? What is the level of purity and holiness in your life? What are you doing to promote the evangelization of the world? ...

Homiletics Notes / 03.01.2020

The Ephesians text for Epiphany also states the main mission of the Church as to the "nations," as co-heirs. In that day this would have been an extremely revolutionary thought and practice in the Roman Empire. While there were conversions to this cult or that, the Christian claim and commitment were really like no other, in that the Christian took their stewardship of grace directly and purposively to mean evangelization. The commitment to Christianity could lead directly to martyrdom, and so it was never done lightly or on a whim. No other cult was persecuted in the same way to the same extent. The letter to the Ephesians stresses this point throughout: the church has a mission to the nations and all are welcome to share the grace of God. Today the passage may very well be read in terms of the rampant racial prejudices, even and especially in the Church, which still remains predominantly Euro-centric. It is ironic that Europe now should be the focus of the mission of evangelization. The same is true of the United States. ...

Homiletics Notes / 02.01.2020

"See, darkness covers the earth, and thick clouds cover the peoples," in the Isaiah prophecy seems apt to describe the world today. A New York Times article today on why we are depressed sets out the scene. Quoting Freud, the Times writes, "anger is depression turned inward." This is the darkness and thick clouds imagery covering for the political, economical, social, and environmental chaos we are in. Where is the light in the darkness? The light is the glory of God shining on a people who have repented and turned away from their ways back to the Torah, which describes an entirely different way of life in sharp contrast to the modern world. Because of this light, when fully lived, others will find their way. The wealth of the nations is not of course the material goods, but rather the people, the Human Resources, the dignity of every person. The prophecy images a great ingathering of the peoples, no longer divided by war, inequality, racism, or anything else. Who doesn't yearn for such a world today, covered as we are by darkness and clouds? ...