Recent News

Recent news and musings by the Catholic Center


Podcast: All Saints Day Homily

Posted by on Nov 7, 2013 at 10:49 pm

Find the readings for All Saints Day here.

Why does the Church celebrate All Saints Day? It is the feast of the Heavenly Jerusalem, our Mother, where the Saints and Angels are citizens of heaven. It is the feast of our homeland.

This feast reminds us to enliven our imagination about what holiness really is. When I was young, I would have thought holiness was the same as boring! Our culture has lost the ability to portray real and substantial goodness. Yet real and substantial goodness exists. Being a Saint is more than being free from sin and guilt. Being a saint is being truly human and really alive.

If we are to invite people to heaven and holiness, we have to know what it is. Holiness and saintliness is real virtue. Unwavering courage, piercing wisdom, justice that shows no favorites, faith in the face of doubt, generous love and more are what make up holiness.

Study the lives of the saints so you can learn how to be really and truly holy. It is possible for you by the grace and power of Jesus Christ.



Podcast: What the Church Needs

Posted by on Oct 18, 2013 at 10:52 pm

The Sunday scriptures can be found here.

This past week the priests of the Diocese gathered with Bishop Swain for annual meetings. One area of discussion these past years has been future planning for the Diocese. One thing we find, that doesn’t get much attention is our Sunday Mass attendance. Our numbers show only 35% of Catholics attend Sunday Mass. That means, on any given Sunday, probably 65% of our Catholics are committing a mortal sin!

Why is it that people don’t live their faith? Is it something unique to our time? No. The Gospel tells the story of ingratitude. These 10 lepers were outcast from their communities but now restored to friendship and support. Only one comes to give thanks.

It wasn’t unique 800 years ago in the days of St. Thomas Aquinas either. He said there are five reasons why hearts do not respond to the power of God, the gifts of the Holy Spirit given in the Sacraments.

  1. Lack of Faith
  2. Lack of Understanding
  3. Lack of Desire to Live a New Life
  4. Lack of Repentance
  5. The priest omitted the pre-baptism exorcisms

What to do? First, build up your own life of prayer. Stir up the gifts God has given you. Just as chocolate syrup needs to be stirred up from the bottom of your glass of milk so to do you need to stir up the gifts. So, if one of the 5 causes of St. Thomas Aquinas caught your attention, deal with it! Go to Mass more often. Pray and beg our Lord to awaken your heart to the gift given to you. Finally, perform works of charity- they always awaken the gift of God.

Second, learn how to reach out to those who’s faith is asleep or dead. Bishop Swain wants to assist you with that with a conference on October 26th: Encountering Jesus Christ. This one day faith conference will strengthen your faith and empower you to find others and aid others who’s faith is asleep.

Finally, remember the generosity of our Lord. He does not portion the Holy Spirit but pours it in abundance to those who ask. Notice that Jesus does not withdraw the gift of physical healing from the 9 lepers who did not return to thank Him. He gives the gift and the gift endures, in hope of their return.



Podcast: Lord, increase our Faith!

Posted by on Oct 9, 2013 at 10:57 pm

This Sunday we hear a lot about faith. We’ll look at faith in two ways: what it is in itself and what it does in us.

Faith, in itself, is something solid. It gives us sure footing for our life. It provides clear, reasonable and rational answers to those who challenge it. We know where to go for the faith: the Scriptures, the Catechism, and the Church’s teaching. We should not be bullied by those who want to abuse the teachings of the Church but learn how to clarify and defend.

The Apostles ask for faith from Jesus, what do they mean? We have 10 Commandments, give us 5 more! No. They are asking for faithfulness. The habit of faith in our souls that allows us to not only hear God’s word but do it. Faithfulness, this habit or virtue of faith, allows us to readily do the things we know to be true.

Think of examples of faithfulness. Parishioners, parents, friends, and especially your confirmation patron- do you remember their life of faithfulness? On October 4, we had the feast of St. Francis of Assisi. He was a man of faithfulness- he heard the word of God and did it. Today, October 6th, I’m grateful for my parents on their 40th wedding anniversary. They heard the word and did it.

As we kneel together in this Mass, pray for two things: 1st in gratitude for those examples of faithfulness that enliven your imagination with faith. 2nd beg our Lord for an increase of your own faithfulness.

The Sunday readings can be found here.