This Sunday’s readings are not subtle.
The first reading begins, “Vanity of vanities, all things are vanity!” If you are familiar with the proper translation—this isn’t talking about self-obsession. This is actually saying everything is fleeting. Beauty, status, wealth. This life goes by incredibly fast and you can’t take any of it with you. As Rose Totino once said, “You never see a U-Haul hitched to the back of a Hearse.”READ MORE
often think one of the most difficult aspects of my back injury is that no one else can see it. It isn’t like my eyes turn red when the pain reaches a certain level. My lumbar doesn’t emit a low-level hum. And I try not to just yell when I’m hurting.
But I have come to realize that I’m not alone. Most people’s worst pains are hidden from the wider world. It might be physical pain that is so bad you understand why the lead character in the television show “House” became addicted to pain killers and was always cranky. It might be psychological pain caused by conflict, struggles, or the aftermath of tragedy. Well, the list could go on and on. The point is that most of the people we interact with on a daily basis are carrying invisible pain to one degree or another.READ MORE
This weekend, we hear the story of Martha and Mary. You know the one. Martha is getting things done while Mary (NOT his mom, different Mary) just sits at Jesus’ feet and listens to him.
Martha finally gets sick of it (like most people who get things done when they see someone “just sitting there!”) and asks Jesus to say something to Mary.READ MORE
We sometimes forget that both politicians and media conglomerates hire professional writers to craft their messaging. These people are truly gifted at what they do and can quickly make arguments so persuasively that those who oppose their viewpoints are often quick to question themselves.
And a small army of these persuasion ninjas have been unleashed on the abortion issue. Stand strong in the facts, my friends. I am currently working on a series of videos that help explain the Church’s position to help remind you and share with others.READ MORE
I was in my mid-twenties. I was a youth minister at my second parish and I’d built the largest Catholic youth ministry program in California north of Los Angeles. And I was in Modesto, not a big city like San Francisco, San Jose, or Sacramento.
On a day like any other, I was summoned into a meeting with the pastor and the head of HR. I was informed that my services were no longer needed. (I confirmed later that the pastor’s friend—also a youth minister—was moving back to the smaller town.) I was shocked. I was hurt. I seriously considered walking away from ministry for good.
Then, something crazy happened. I went to one last Mass at that particular parish and I heard a line from this weekend’s Gospel. An amazing line.READ MORE