Archive for the ‘Easter’ Category

Love one Another 5-10-2015

Sunday, May 10th, 2015

I have a truly sad story for you today. Couple of years ago, I was called to the cemetery to officiate at the burial of a woman who had no parish priest. She was very old – 97 – and had been active to the end. But when the hour for the service came, there was only one mourner, her 75 year old son.
“Tell me about your mother, “I asked. “She must have been a positive, energetic woman to have lived so long entirely on her own.”
“No,” he said, shaking his head. “She was difficult. She had no idea how to love. She was never abusive to me; she was just nothing to me. And now she is gone.”
And so he cried for what might have been, could have been, should have been. He cried and spoke softly to himself the saddest words in our language, “Too late.”
Too late! May none of us ever have to speak those words. But how can we avoid it? There’s only one sure path and Jesus laid it out for us in his gospel: “Love one another as I have loved you.”
A simple formula for a life without regret. And yet we misunderstand it all the time. We keep confusing the cheap imitations with the real thing. Infatuation, sentimental tears, the teenage crush, a passionate song, that warm and cozy feeling – all very nice, but they’re not love.
To love is to give a piece of one’s heart and not take it back. Love sticks around in the good days and the bad ones. It does what needs to be done in tiny pieces and can be done even by the smallest of us.
Love has its bad days when its heart is cold and there are few cheery thoughts to warm it. But even then, love does not falter, and does not take back that piece of the heart that it gave away. Love’s work is never done, but its yield is never ending.
True love will never have to speak the words, “Too late!”
Long ago Jesus our brother gave his whole heart to us once and for all. May he help us to give our hearts to one another and never take them back. May he help us never have to say: – “Too Late / Too Late!”

Let me close with this:

The bumper sticker said:


So I SMILED all day long…

And people thought I was acting a little weird.

The bumper sticker said:


So I HONKED…And the policeman said I was disturbing the PEACE.

The bumper sticker said:


So I WAVED with both hands, lost control of the car, and crashed into a telephone pole.


If I cannot SMILE…or HONK…or even WAVE

How will Jesus KNOW I love him?


Mere smiling or honking or waiving is too EASY!

IF you really want to love Jesus, you must love one ANOTHER!


“I am the Vine – You all are the Branches” 5-5-2015

Saturday, May 2nd, 2015

Upon the mountain top there lived a kind and gentle God. In the village far below, God’s people lived. They were a very busy people, with many books to read and many games to play, and very many meetings to attend. They seldom thought about the kind and gentle God.
Yet, day by day the gentle God looked down upon his people and wanted very much that they should be his friends.

(PC): “I must do some things to show them that I care.”

And so, each day, God sent a messenger to the village, a pack upon his back, and in the pack he bore a special gift, a gift to every person in the land.
Each day the gift would come. Each day the people ran with open arms to gather them. But soon they grew quite used to being gifted. Some began to grab gifts from the pack, and some took more than they were meant to have, and some complained of gifts that were too small. At last no one remembered from where the gifts had come. And no one even thought to ask.
Far up on the mountain top sat God. Day after lonely day God waited for a friendly word, a sign of thanks, or just a “Hi, God, I know you’re there.”
But no word came. The people took the gifts as if they had a right to them. God? Well, he was far away. And some said, “What’s God ever done for me?” And some, “I don’t believe God even is.”

(PC): “If I can’t tell them that I am,”, “how can I tell them that I am a friend and want to give them friendship most of all?”

And then God’s eyes lit up.

(PC): I know, I’ll give a party for my friends below. I’ll give a party and invite them all. And surely if they spend some time with me and learn to know how much I really care, oh, surely they’ll come to know I am their friend.”

And so the invitations were sent out. A list was posted on the town house wall for all who wished to come to sign their names.
The people saw the invitation. Some just laughed and said, “That’s not for me!” And some said, “Spend a day with God? “Some other time but not today.” And some were tempted: “Maybe it’s for real and maybe God does want to be my friend.” And timidly they signed up for the day. But when the others laughed, they were ashamed and found excuses why they couldn’t go.
The party day arrived but no one went. And in God’s mountain home the kind God sat.

(PC): “I only want to give them love,” “How can I tell them? Make them understand?

And in the village far below, the people laughed and cried and worked and played and died. And seldom thought about the Gentle God who loved them very much.
I am the Vine – You are the Branches
The person who lives in me and I
In them will produce abundantly.
For Apart From Me – You can do Nothing.

God is Waiting to be Found 4-19-2015

Thursday, April 16th, 2015

The disciples ran to Jerusalem with exciting news.
“We just saw Jesus,” they exclaimed.
The others crowded around to get the details. They all wanted to know how he looked. And you would have thought that these two people who had just seen Jesus would have remembered how he looked, but they could not do it. What was wrong with them?
All they could say were things like:
“He looked like a father stretching out his hands to his prodigal son and his older brother.”
“He looked like he did when he laid his hands on all the sick, restoring them all to health.”
“He looked like he did when he took Jairus’s daughter by the hand and brought her back to life.”
“He looked like the apostles when they distributed those five loaves and two fishes to those five thousand hungry people.”
“He looked like the hemorrhaging woman who reached out her hand and touched his cloak and was healed.”
“He looked like the woman who washed his feet with her perfume and was blessed with his forgiveness and peace.”
“He looked like the widow with hands folded in prayer, seeking justice from that corrupt judge.”
“He looked like he did on the night before he died when he took bread and broke it saying, ‘This is my body to be given up for you. Do this as a remembrance of me.’”
So this is how they described Jesus’ appearance. And every time after that, whenever they saw hands reaching out to touch the lives of others, they saw Jesus alive.
I close with this story: A little boy was playing hide-and-seek with his friends. For some unknown reason they stopped playing while he was hiding. He began to cry. His old grandfather came out of the house to see what was troubling him and to comfort him. After learning what had happened, the grandfather said, “Do not weep, my child, because the boys did not come to find you. Perhaps you can learn a lesson from this disappointment. All of life is like a game between God and us. Only it is God who is weeping, for we are not playing the game fairly. God is waiting to be found, but many have gone in search of other things.”
In so many ways, the risen Christ is in our midst, present in the love, charity and goodness of others, in the Sacrament of Eucharist, in God’s Word – Broken and Shared, in the Community of Faith Filled People and in moments of Grace and Prayer. Unfortunately, we often do not realize it.
May our celebration open our hearts and spirits to recognize Christ among us in every season of our life. “Lord, help us not to miss you. Amen.”