Saturday, September 23, 2017

Love's Energy

"A thought, a material improvement, 
a unique nuance of human love, 
the enchanting complexity of a smile or a glance--
the spiritual success of the universe is bound up 
with the release of every possible energy in it."
--Teilhard de Chardin

Friday, September 22, 2017

Free Love

Happy Autumn Equinox!  Such gorgeous weather as crops are readying for harvest.
In his parable of the "Crazy Farmer" (Mt:20:1-16,) who pays workers for just an hour what he pays others for a whole day's work, Jesus wants to convince us that God is just as crazy with Love.  Grace means gift.  Gracious means freely given.  God's love cannot be earned.  That's the Gospel truth.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Walking the Wrong Way

Recently I heard a priest talking about how he worked with young adults who say they don't believe in God or religion.  He referred to the story of the two disciples on the way back to Emmaus (Luke 24:13-35.)   They didn't recognize the Risen Jesus when he joined them on the road.  The priest pointed out that they were walking the wrong way, away from Jerusalem.  Jesus walked the wrong way with them.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Hang In There

Not only is the fuchsia hanging in there, but there are little drops of rain clinging to the blossoms. (Click on picture to enlarge.)
I sat  on my glasses, I was taken in by fraudulent computer technicians, and I didn't get to my breakfast until 1 PM.  I pray that God will help me hear the encouragement of the fuchsia and the raindrops.

Friday, September 15, 2017


On this old feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, I found myself reflecting, not on Mary at the Cross, but at the beginning before she said "Yes" to all  this.  In Tanner's Annunciation  Mary looks like she has just been awakened by this angel of light (please click on the picture to enlarge it.)  To me her expression seems quizzical, her hands composed, her shoulders bent a little in humility.
I could not name a single instant when I said "Yes."  It was something that grew gradually in me.  I did remember a time when I was praying in chapel in the college seminary.  I had been thinking for a few years that I might like to go as a missionary to some foreign country to introduce people to Jesus. As I prayed that day, however, I decided that I would rather spend my life helping Catholics to appreciate the great gift of our faith.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Love fulfills the law.

In three brief verses, Romans 13:8-10, St. Paul says a lot about love.  "Owe nothing  to anyone, except to love one another."  Love is what we came here for.  When we exclude people or look down on them or hate them, we have wandered far from the path of Jesus.  In following his path, all the signs point to love.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Labor Day

The first Labor Day Parade took place in New York City in September, 1882.  It was put on by a new organization of workers, called the Knights of Labor.  Two-thirds of the organization were Catholic, as was their president, Terence Pwoderly.  In 1891 Pope Leo XIII wrote an encyclical "About New Things" concerning the condition of workers.  Most revolutionary were two statements: that workers had a natural right to a just wage and that workers had a natural right to organize to bargain for  a just wage and safe working conditions.
In 1973, 26.6 % of U.S. workers belonged to unions and 51.9 % of all income went to the middle class; by 2015 those numbers were down to 11.1 % and 45.7%.  In 1965 the average C.E.O. compensation at America's largest firms was 20 times the average annual pay of the typical worker; in 2016 it was 271 times larger.  These figures are from an article in America's issue of September 4, 2017.
We pray for justice.