Choosing Our Treasure

“For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.” Matthew 6:21 Sometime in early adulthood I became aware for the first time of how difficult to answer I found the question “What do you want?” In today’s passage from Matthew’s account of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus tells us how important this[read more]

Playing Many Parts

“When you give alms, therefore, do not trumpet it aloud before you, as those who are playacting do in the synagogues and in the streets so they may be lauded by others; amen, I tell you, they have their recompense in full. But when you are giving alms do not allow your left hand to[read more]

The Light of Goodness

When Barnabas arrived and saw the grace of God, he rejoiced and encouraged them all to remain faithful to the Lord in firmness of heart, for he was a good man, filled with the Holy Spirit and faith. Acts 11: 23-24 Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good[read more]

“Do You Love Me More Than These”

“Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?”  Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.”  “Feed my lambs.” John 21: 15 For most of my life, I have read this passage from John 21 in a certain way.  I have taken the first of Jesus’ three questions[read more]

Fearless Rest

“I pray not only for these, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me. And I have given[read more]

The Spirit of Truth

“When the Advocate comes whom I will send you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, he will testify to me.  And you also testify, because you have been with me from the beginning.” John 15: 26-27 Adrian van Kaam would say that “we are tradition through and through.”  By[read more]

Prosaic Contemplation

The past few nights I have been reading the concluding chapters of Roger Lipsey’s biography of Dag Hammarskjold. These chapters deal with the very complicated role of the United Nations, and so of Hammarskjold himself, in the struggle for independence of the Congo. In the course of that most difficult time in Hammarskjold’s life and work, a work that would ultimately cost him his life, he gave a brief statement on the anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Human Rights.[read more]

Leadership and Accountability

In the current issue of The Atlantic, the cover story is by James Carroll who boldly asserts that the only future for the Roman Catholic Church is the abolishing of the priesthood. In this he echoes an argument made several years ago by the historian Garry Wills in his book Why Priests. While he would, probably not come to the same conclusions, Pope Francis himself has stated that clericalism is the foundational cause of what we call today the sexual abuse crisis in the Church.[read more]

Enjoy Your Life

The above words of Paul are evoked by the attempt of the people of Lystra, after a man crippled from birth has been healed by the words of Paul and Barnabas, to worship them as gods. "They called Barnabas ‘Zeus’ and Paul ‘Hermes’." Immediately Paul attempts to return them to what is, “rains from heaven and fruitful seasons.” The “living God,” says Paul, is the one “who made heaven and earth and sea and all that is in them.” In today’s gospel, Jesus teaches likewise: “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we[read more]

Your Will Be Done

The words of Jesus today echo words that, perhaps, most of us heard sometime in our childhood from our parents, teachers, or other caregivers: “Didn’t you hear what I said to you?” This would be said to us after we had failed to do what we were told. In effect they were telling us that they were not judging us but rather the words they had spoken that we did not heed and carry out.[read more]