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28th Sunday: Eucharist means thanksgiving

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On this mountain the Lord of Hosts will make for all peoples a feast of rich food (Is 25:6). Throughout our nation in what we can claim as a truly North American tradition, Canadians are observing Thanksgiving Day. In the observance of what is essentially a harvest festival, we give thanks to God for the fruits of the earth. In so doing we are faithful to the command found in the Book of Exodus: "You shall keep the feast of harvest, of ... (Continue reading)

27th Sunday: The vineyard of the Lord

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Turn again, O God of hosts; look down from heaven and see; have regard for this vine, the stock that your right hand has planted (Ps 80). The Scripture lessons of the Mass today invite us to enter into the mystery of the Church on earth as the vineyard of the Lord. As we continue to read and reflect on the parables of the Kingdom, "the inner nature of the Church is made known to us in various images" (Lumen Gentium, 6). ... (Continue reading)

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Feast of St. Therese of the Child Jesus and of the Holy Face

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Today we celebrate the Saint of the Little Way, a cloistered nun who died at the age of only twenty-four, having led a very simple and hidden life. After her death and the publication of her writings, she quickly became one of the best known and loved saints. She has never stopped helping the simplest souls, the little, the poor, the ordinary, and the suffering who pray to her. She has also illumined the Church with her profound spiritual doctrine. ... (Continue reading)

26th Sunday: Self-giving, self-emptying love

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Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus (Phil 6:14). Two Sundays ago, when we celebrated the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, you may remember that our second reading was essentially the same text we have just heard from St. Paul’s Epistle to the Philippians. We return to it for our consideration and prayer today so that we might further deepen our understanding of the mind and Heart of Christ; revealed as they are ... (Continue reading)

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25th Sunday: The Kingdom of God

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For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord. (Is 55:9) The parable of the workers in the vineyard which the sacred liturgy presents to us for our instruction and as an aid to worship is in fact a means by which we enter more deeply into the mystery of God’s Kingdom and indeed, the mystery of God Himself. Our Lord’s preaching was such that His parables are meant "to lead gradually to the hidden ... (Continue reading)

Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross

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We should glory in the Cross of our Lord Jesus, in whom is our salvation, life and resurrection, through whom we are saved and delivered (Entrance Antiphon, Cf. Gal 6:14). Today’s Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, one of the Church’s oldest, celebrates the triumph of God’s humility over man’s pride "for the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men" (1 Cor 1:25). The first followers of our Lord evidently ... (Continue reading)

23rd Sunday: Sacred liturgy and Catholic culture

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O come, let us worship God and bow down, before the God who made us, for He is the Lord our God (Ps 95:6-7). In what is known as the Divine Office or the Liturgy of the Hours, the official set of daily prayers prescribed by the Church, all those who recite these prayers, whether in monasteries or religious houses or alone in private recitation, begin with the recitation of Psalm 95, the Responsorial Psalm of our Mass. "Come, let us sing ... (Continue reading)

22nd Sunday: Embrace the Cross

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If anyone wants to become my disciple, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. (Mt 16:24) As we continue our reading of St. Matthew’s Gospel and enter more fully into the Mystery of our Lord’s identity and mission as Messiah, we learn in today’s Gospel passage that if we wish to follow Jesus we must do so on His terms, not ours; no matter how well-intentioned we may consider ourselves to be. Surely, this is the case ... (Continue reading)

21st Sunday: You are the Christ

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You are the Christ, the Son of the living God (Mt 16:16). St. Peter’s statement of faith is the foundation of the Christian faith, just as it is the foundation of the Church’s life and mission. Christians are so called because we believe in the divinity of Christ; namely, that Jesus Christ is the Only Begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial ... (Continue reading)

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20th Sunday: The sacrament of unity

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For my house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples (Is 56:7). The prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled in our hearing. The sacred assembly (synaxis) of the Church, universally and locally is always sacramental; that is to say, it is a sign of the Church as the sacrament of unity. Any assembly of the faithful, be it small or great, is always a participation in the unity and universality of the Church. The vision of the Prophet Isaiah alludes to ... (Continue reading)

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