News - Engaged Evangelist

Sunday, October 13

Thanksgiving

How do we show our thanks to others for what we receive or are given? Has there ever been a time when you were so taken by what you have received or with your life that you simply moved on and did not think to show or offer words of thanksgiving?

Sunday, October 6

Patience

​When you hear the word “faith” what comes to mind? What are the associations you think of? We have faith in our cars that they will get us to work. We have faith in the relationships of our lives that sustain us and give our lives meaning. We have faith in God who is the foundation of all that we do, or do we? Are we like the Apostles in today’s gospel, who find that they feel a bit deficient in their faith in God?

Sunday, September 29

Complacent

Sixteen year old Greta Thunberg showed up at the Climate Action Summit at the United Nations this week to offer a prophetic reprimand of world leaders’ response to climate change. The strength of her words were shared on social media and her warning echoed over and over again on those platforms. Her refrain of “how dare you” was aimed at the attending leaders to shake them out of a complacent sense that they are doing enough to address climate change. She decried their concern for economic growth and well-being over concern for the well-being of the earth. Her warning is reminiscent of the prophetic “woe to the complacent” offered by the prophet Amos in today’s first reading who warns against the comforts of wealth.

Sunday, September 22

Mammon

​Our readings for today, strike a harsh tone and may leave us wondering what we can take away from them. In the first reading the prophet Amos’ warning is directed at those who would treat the poor, poorly. The poor are being treated as chattel to be sold off for something as small as a pair of sandals. To address this issue Amos delivers this message from God. He says, “The LORD has sworn by the pride of Jacob: Never will I forget a thing they have done” (8: 7).

Sunday, September 15

Mercy-Full

​Our scriptures for this Sunday are reflective of the mercy of God. Paul describes his experience of God’s mercy in his letter to Timothy. He reflects that he, who was once “blasphemous,” “arrogant,” “ignorant,” and a persecutor has “been mercifully treated” by God. In the midst of his sin Paul reflects that God brought him back through his encounter with Christ. Because of the mercy he experienced in his conversion encounter, Paul proclaims “indeed the grace of our Lord has been abundant.”

Sunday, September 8

Possession

In today’s gospel, we hear Jesus urge a separation from family saying “If anyone comes to me without hating his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple” (Lk. 14: 26). His use of the word “hate” adds a harsh and abrupt feeling to what he is saying. What could Jesus possibly mean by “hating” our families? Does this not contradict his command to love even our enemies?

Sunday, August 11

Stewardship

​“Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more” (Lk. 12: 48). This quote from Luke’s gospel has always challenged me and made me consider what is required of me as a person of faith. I consider myself to be a person entrusted with much. I am college educated and despite my complaints and struggles about my life, I have not known major material struggle. So what is required of me? It seems to me the answer is contained earlier in Luke’s gospel. Jesus tells us, “For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be” (12: 34). And so where is our treasure? Where do we focus our attention and resources? How much of our energy goes toward preserving those things? If the answers to those questions are “me” focused, then we are missing something.

Sunday, August 4

Inheritance

​An inheritance is wealth or possessions that come to us when a family member dies. That person passes on his or her wealth out of love and care for those he or she leaves behind. The readings for today reflect on inheritance in terms of the nature of our possessions and our attitude toward them. They raise questions about the nature of our possessions.

Sunday, July 28

Persistence

​All of us ask for things on a daily basis. Our asks may be small, or they may be large. They may be a one-time request or a constant stream of supplication for something. How often do we get what we want? Well, It depends on the ask. My kids often ask for things that, as a parent, I know are not good for them. What’s difficult is when they persist in a request for something you don’t want them to have. Usually, out of love, my wife and I try to find a way to show them we have heard their request and explain why the answer may not be to grant it.

Sunday, July 21

Hospitality

​Today’s readings focus on the theme of hospitality. In the first reading, Abraham and Sarah’s attention to being hospitable to their guests turns into the great fortune of a child for them, moving them beyond their barren state, into a fulfillment of God’s promise of many descendants. It is nothing less than a miracle, which is granted because of the hospitality they lavish on three strangers who, Abraham later realizes are nothing less than the presence of “the Lord.”