60 Second Reflections

    Seeking Fame

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    In the first reading today from Numbers 12, we see God punishing two people for being prideful. More in a moment. In our Gospel reading from Matthew 15, Jesus tells the crowds, “It is not what enters one’s mouth that defiles the man; but what comes out of the mouth is what defiles one.” A […]

    Why Did You Doubt?

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    Today’s readings can be hard to read. In the first reading, Moses expresses the pain that can come with service and leadership. The people are grumbling again. And Moses feels the burden of leading them. So much so that he asks the Lord to just take his life. “I cannot carry all this people by […]

    Showing Love Through Food

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    Family meals can be a very special time. In many cultures, love is shared through meals. While the food may seem to be the centerpiece of the gathering, it really isn’t. The love that family members share is the reason for the gathering. As family members, we show our love by feeding one another. This […]

    A Year of Jubilee

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    In today’s first reading from Leviticus 25, we read about the jubilee. More on that in a moment. In the Gospel reading from Matthew 14, we read the story of the beheading of John the Baptist. John wasn’t afraid to tell even the king that he was doing wrong. Unfortunately, it cost him his head. […]

    Balancing Doing and Being

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    Today we celebrate the feast of St. Martha. As per ususal, there are options for the readings. The options for a Gospel reading are from John 11 or Luke 10. In these two readings, we see two different sides of Martha. In John, Martha is filled with faith, and even echoes the words of St. […]

    Good and Bad Together

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    In the first reading today from Exodus 40, we read about the Dwelling. Notice the capital “D” in the word. This was the place in the Israelite camp where God stayed. We read about how the children of Israel scheduled their travels around the comings and goings of God in the Dwelling. Today’s Gospel reading […]

    Radiating God

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    We all encounter God in one way or another. Moses’ encounters with God were different from all others. He spoke to God face to face. Though Moses wasn’t aware of it, these encounters with God actually changed his physical appearance. We see in today’s first reading from Exodus 34 that the skin of his face […]

    Being Wheat

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    In the first reading today from Exodus 33 and 34, we see this very special relationship that Moses had with God. No one before, nor anyone after, until Jesus, had this kind of relationship. “The Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, as one man speaks to another.” Imagine that! Moses actually looked […]

    Feast of St. James

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    Today we celebrate the Feast of St. James. This James is the son of Zebedee and the brother of St. John the Apostle. Our first reading is from 2 Corinthians 4. I hope you’ll take the time to read it. It is beautiful. The Gospel reading is from Matthew 20, where the mother of James […]

    What Are You Willing to Give?

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    In the Gospel reading from Matthew 13, Jesus tells two very brief parables about what the Kingdom of heaven is like. Though often times his messages were hidden, Jesus always used examples that his listeners would relate to. Today he talks about finding things that would make us rich beyond our wildest dreams. A treasure […]

    Wheat or Weed?

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    Today’s Gospel reading from Matthew 13 is the parable of the weeds and the wheat. A bad guy comes and sows weed seeds into a man’s wheat field. When the servants find out, they ask the master if they should pull the weeds. The master says that they will be separated at harvest time. Jesus […]

    A New Creation

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    Today is the feast of St. Mary Magdalene. There are different options for the first reading. The reading for Friday in the Sixteenth Week of Ordinary Time is from Exodus 20; the Ten Commandments. In an optional reading for the feast day from 2 Corinthians 5:14-17, St. Paul writes, “So whoever is in Christ is […]

    Do You Get It?

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    What would it be like to see God? Not to see the image of God in the poor or the majesty of God in a mountain, but to actually SEE God. I’m guessing it would be a pretty frightening thing. It sure was for the children of Israel. In today’s first reading from Exodus 19, […]

    (The First) Bread from Heaven

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    Bread from heaven. When most people hear that phrase, they probably think of Jesus. And rightfully so. But in today’s first reading from Exodus 16, we once again experience typology. We see a foreshadowing of Jesus. In the Gospel reading from Matthew 13, Jesus tells the parable of the sower of seeds. Time for a […]

    All in the Family

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    The first reading today is the story of the parting of the Red Sea. The Israelites walk across the Red Sea on dry land. The Egyptian army is in hot pursuit. When they get into the middle of the Sea, God puts the water back where it belongs. They all drown. This is a miracle […]

    Overcoming Obstacles

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    In the first reading today from Exodus 14, we see the beginning of the story of the parting of the Red Sea. More on that in a moment. In the Gospel reading from Matthew 12, some scribes and Pharisees come to Jesus and say, “Teacher, we wish to see a sign from you.” Here we […]

    Parables

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    In today’s Gospel reading, we hear Jesus telling numerous parables. The first is the parable of the weeds in the field. He then tells the parable of the mustard seed, and of a woman who mixes yeast with flour. Why did Jesus speak in parables? It tells us in today’s Gospel. To get the answer, […]

    Make Jesus Known

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    In our reading from Exodus 12 today, God tells the children of Israel that the night of the Passover will be a “vigil for the Lord throughout their generations.” And so it remains to this very day. In the Gospel reading from Matthew 12, Jesus cures many people. But He “warned them not to make […]

    More Than Meets the Eye

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    Pharaoh was a stubborn chap. Despite numerous plagues that had been visited on his people, he still would not let the Israelites leave. So God had to come up with the granddaddy of all plagues. He would strike all the firstborn sons dead. In today’s first reading from Exodus 11 and 12, we read about […]

    I AM

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    In the first reading today from Exodus 3, we read more of the interaction between God and Moses when God reveals Himself in the burning bush. Our Gospel reading is a familiar one from Matthew 11. Take it to heart and you will find rest in Jesus. When God told Moses to go and speak […]

    Who, Me?

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    In today’s first reading, we see God calling to Moses in the burning bush. The story is one of the most compelling stories in the Old Testament. How did Moses respond to God’s call? More in a moment. In the Gospel reading from Matthew 11, Jesus says that the Father has “hidden these things from the wise […]

    Can’t You See?

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    In our first reading today from Exodus 2, we see the story of the early part of Moses’ life. Because of the law that Hebrew baby boys be killed, Moses’ mother hid him in a basket and set it afloat on the river. He was found by an Egyptian and adopted by Pharaoh’s daughter, and […]

    Jesus the Divider

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    One of the titles of Jesus is Prince of Peace. Yet in today’s Gospel reading from Matthew 10, Jesus says just the opposite. “Do not think that I have come to bring peace upon the earth. I have come to bring not peace but the sword.” He then goes on to tell how He will […]

    Receiving and Sowing the Word

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    In the Gospel reading today from Matthew 13, Jesus tells the parable of the sower of the seeds. After telling his parable, the disciples didn’t understand. Jesus seems a bit perturbed. But He explains the parable to them. He starts out, “The sower sows the word.” Then He goes on to explain about the different […]

    Speaking of Jesus

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    In today’s first reading, we see the end of the story of Joseph in Genesis 49 and 50. After Jacob had died, Joseph’s brothers were still afraid that Joseph might exact revenge on them for what they had done to him. But Joseph had no such plans. And he reassures them that he forgives them, […]

    Hated by All

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    What a beautiful reunion we read about today in our first reading from Genesis 46. Jacob/Israel thought that his youngest son, Joseph, had been eaten by wild beasts. But then his other boys come back from Egypt and spill the beans about the truth of what happened. Israel was now very old, and all he […]

    A Bigger Plan

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    In the Gospel reading today from Matthew 10, Jesus sends out the Twelve and gives them their “marching orders.” He says to them, “Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give.” The same holds true for us. God has given us everything freely. We should be willing to share the gifts that […]

    The Kingdom is at Hand

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    In our first reading today from Genesis 41, we read about Joseph. We skipped over the part about Joseph being sold into slavery by his brothers, and now we see Joseph as the most powerful man in the land, second only to the Pharaoh. There is a great famine, and Joseph’s brothers come to him […]

    Wrestling With the Divine

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    Another fascinating story today in our first reading from Genesis 32. Today we read about Jacob wrestling with a divine being. After something of a stalemate, Jacob gets his name changed. More in a moment. In the Gospel reading, Jesus tells the disciples, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the […]

    Love of God and Country

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    Happy 4th of July! A little change of pace today. The Church gives parishes the option of doing any number of readings for Independence Day, if they choose to celebrate that. So, rather than comment on the Scriptures today, I thought I would share a quick thought about America. There is a very popular movement […]

    Finding Rest in Jesus

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    In our Gospel reading today from Matthew 11, Jesus issues an invitation. “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke […]

    Mary’s Immaculate Heart

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    Today the Church celebrates the Feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Yesterday was the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It is appropriate that we celebrate the heart of His mother the following day. Our Gospel reading today is from Luke 2, the story of the finding of the child Jesus in the […]

    The Heart of Jesus

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    Today the Church celebrates the Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus. Jesus speaks of His heart in the Gospel reading from Matthew 11: “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and […]

    The Ultimate Test

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    Today in our first reading from Genesis 22, we see Abraham put to the test by God. Could it be the ultimate test? I think so, and I’ll tell you why in a moment. In the Gospel reading from Matthew 9, we see the story Jesus healing a paralytic. But more than just healing him […]

    Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul

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    Today the Church celebrates the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul. Interesting, isn’t it? You would think that, given the importance of each, they would both have their own feast day. I mean, after all, Peter was the first Pope, the one who got the keys to the Kingdom. (See today’s Gospel reading.) And Paul […]

    Lord, Save Us!

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    In the first reading today from Genesis 19, we read about the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. Because of their wickedness, God had his sights set on them. But Abraham’s nephew, Lot, was in the region. Abraham asked that Lot be spared. So angels came and told Lot to get out of Dodge! They said […]

    Negotiating With God

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    In our first reading today from Genesis 18, we see an amazing story of Abraham negotiating with God. In the Gospel reading, we read about two interesting encounters that Jesus has with some of his disciples. To both, Jesus talks about the cost of following Him. God was sick of all the wickedness that He […]

    Our Participation in the Body and Blood of Christ

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    Today the Church celebrates the Feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. The Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith as Catholics. What a great day! In the first reading from Deuteronomy 8, Moses reminds the people not to forget all the wondrous deeds that the Lord has done for […]

    Laugh!

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    Abram had just had a son, Ishmael. This son was not born of his wife, Sarai. But in today’s first reading from Genesis 18, Abraham is informed that he and his wife, Sarah, (notice the name changes) will bear a son. More on that in a moment. In the Gospel reading today, Jesus has an […]

    Mission Focused

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    Today the Church celebrates the birth of John the Baptist. In the first reading from Isaiah 49, we see prophesies that certainly pertain to the life of John the Baptist. In the second reading from Acts 13, St. Paul tells of how John heralded the coming of the Lord Jesus. And the Gospel reading from […]

    Saying “Lord, Lord”

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    God promised Abram that He would give him an heir. After waiting around for some time for God to keep his promise, Abram’s wife, Sarai decided to take matters into her own hand. She told Abram to have intercourse with her maidservant, Hagar. Hagar became pregnant, and this created quite the family mess. Abram finally […]

    Covenant

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    In the first reading today from Genesis 15, God makes a covenant with Abram. In the Gospel reading from Matthew 7, Jesus talks about false prophets and how you can recognize them. “A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a rotten tree bear good fruit…So by their fruits you will know them.” Always […]

    The Path of Least Resistance

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    In the first reading today from Genesis 13, we see that Abram was a very rich man. But he was also very generous. So generous that he allowed his nephew, Lot, to have his first choice of the land that the Lord was giving them. He said, “If you prefer the left, I will go […]

    The Splinter and the Beam

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    Abraham is known as the father of the faith. We see why in today’s first reading from Genesis 12. When Abram was 75 years old, God told him to pack up all of his belongings and go to a land that he had never seen. “Abram went as the Lord directed him.” That’s faith! In […]

    Greetings From the Trinity

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    Today we celebrate the Feast of the Most Holy Trinity. Our Gospel reading is John 3:16-18. John 3:16 may be the most well known Bible verse. Most people would at least claim to know the reference, if not what John 3:16 says. (By the way, it is “God so loved the world that he gave […]

    Let Go and Let God

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    In the first reading today from 2 Corinthians 12, St. Paul continues his thought on boasting about his weaknesses. “I will rather boast most gladly of my weaknesses, in order that the power of Christ may dwell with me.” In the Gospel reading from Matthew 6, Jesus talks about worry. Have you ever met a […]

    Where is Your Treasure?

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    In the world, especially in business, there’s an old expression: Never expose your weakness. I think that’s why so many men don’t cry. They view it as a sign of weakness. In our first reading today, St. Paul turns that notion on its head. He says, “If I must boast, I will boast of the […]

    God’s Will Be Done

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    In our first reading today from 2 Corinthians 11, St. Paul defends himself and his teachings to the Corinthians. There were some silver-tongued “superapostles” coming through town that were leading people astray. The people were falling for a silver tongue and a slick message. But it was not the message of the true gospel that […]

    A Cheerful Giver

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    Our Gospel reading today is the same one we read on Ash Wednesday. In Matthew 6, Jesus teaches about almsgiving, prayer and fasting. Always lessons that we need to be reminded of. In the first reading today from 2 Corinthians 9, St. Paul says, “Each must do as already determined, without sadness or compulsion, for […]

    Doing the Undoable

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    Over the next couple of days in the first readings, we’re going to be hearing some of St. Paul’s thoughts about giving to the church and taking care of the needs of the holy ones. Today in 2 Corinthians 8, St. Paul speaks of the awesome example of the people of the church in Macedonia. […]

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