Second Sunday of Advent reflection by Lori Howard

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In this week’s Gospel from Luke, John the Baptist challenges us to repent of our sin and to seek God. This is one of the central themes of Advent - to renew our relationship with God. On our way home from Mass last week, my children asked me for concrete answers as to what it means to prepare in Advent. We are often told to make Advent preparations, that it is a time for spiritual renewal and a time to open our hearts to God. But what does that really mean? How should we prepare our hearts for the coming of Christ?

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33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time reflection by Fr. Matt Litak

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This Gospel is one of those, either Jesus is a madman, or He is the Son of God incarnate. "Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away," is something only God could say. We trust Jesus, that He isn’t insane. The things He has said throughout the Gospel are some of the sanest things ever recorded. They are Wisdom. So, when He says they won’t pass away, we believe Him. Jesus’ words are eternal. They are words expressing concepts like: Love, Mercy, Forgiveness, Belonging to God, and Eternal Life.

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32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time reflection by Nicole Zenner

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After four years, it is still a bit of a shock for me to think of my mom as a widow. But that is only one element of how I would describe her and the life she has made. She was the one that provided for our family for most of my life, she owns land, and she is able to take care of herself in retirement. So it’s hard for me see the direct comparison of status between her and the widows during the time of Elijah and Jesus. Trying to put myself in their shoes, I can’t imagine the helplessness and hopelessness that they must have felt.

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31st Sunday in Ordinary Time reflection by Fr. Paul Barwikowski

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Are we far from the Kingdom of God?

During my time in Uganda I learned about some Christians who were invoking God’s Kingdom to be present here on earth as it is in heaven. But, I also learned about those who were afraid of that Kingdom and that’s why people like St. Charles lwanga and his companions lost their lives.

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30th Sunday in Ordinary Time reflection by Fr. Matt Litak

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Sometimes biblical geography adds important layers to our understanding. Jericho is one of the lowest physical points on earth, let alone the Holy Land. Close to the salty Dead Sea it is almost 900 ft below sea level. For context, the lowest point in North America is only 280 ft. below sea level. Jerusalem, where Jesus is heading, is about 2500 ft above sea level. Bartimaeus, the blind man, is sitting on the outskirts of this low point, sitting apart from the crowd, being shouted down; told that his worries don’t matter. He is literally and spiritually at a low point.

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