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Five Minute Mass Reflection – May 3, 2015

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Spend a few minutes getting primed for the readings at Mass this Sunday, as we celebrate the fifth Sunday of Easter.  Our first reading comes from the Acts of the Apostles 9:26-31 (the newly converted Saul/Paul is accepted among the fledgling Church & given a share in the mission).  The responsory comes from Psalm 22 (Lord, from You comes my praise in the great congregation), the second reading comes from the 1st Letter of St. John 3:18-24 (our faith and love are shown not only in words, but are reflected clearly in the way we live our lives), and the Gospel is from John 15:1-8 (Jesus is the vine, we are the branches – and we are to stay connected to Him.)

Look up the full text of the readings in your Bible – or check them out on the USCCB website by clicking here.Continue Reading

Room 2106

Photo Credit: Jonathan Mueller on Flickr (Creative Commons)
Photo Credit: Jonathan Mueller on Flickr (Creative Commons)

I spent an extended weekend in Kananaskis Country, surrounded by the beauty of the Rocky Mountains – while being challenged by a Cajun “Faith horticulturist” (that’s honestly what he calls himself) named Mike Patin.  While I’ve heard him before, I was a rookie attendee at an event called SPICE (Sharing Purpose in Catholic Education) – a four day retreat for Catholic Teachers & support staff like myself – which is put on by the Alberta Catholic School Trustees Association.  Overall, it’s an experience I’m still digesting –  but I certainly came home with some food for thought about the way I serve young people in our schools… things I will be adjusting and changing moving forward in my work as a chaplain and youth minister.

One of the highlights of my weekend was the presence of two wonderful people – Archbishop Richard Smith (my bishop) and Fr. Michael Schumacher (a former classmate of mine).  His grace and Fr. Mike celebrated Mass at 7am on Friday and Saturday for those souls willing to deprive themselves of a bit of sleep – all of it in room 2106.  Fr. Mike also took time on both of those afternoons to hear confessions… something I heard several people mention as a highlight for them.  All of this happened at the Delta Lodge in Kananaskis, in room 2106.Continue Reading

Unfolding Scripture: God’s Covenant with David

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Photo Credit: Angel [FAL], via Wikimedia Commons

Following the life and death of Moses, Israel lived for generations without a king.  Joshua brought them into the promised land, and for a time, they lived up to their end of the covenant.  But, in a cycle that would repeat itself a dozen times, Israel would fall into sin and God would allow them to be conquered and sent into slavery.  Israel would turn back to God, begging for Him to rescue them – which He would do, by sending one of the Judges (Samson is likely the most famous of these).

Israel grew tired of this, and began to beg for a king.  In spite of Samuel’s protestations that a king is subject to corruption – God promised to do precisely this for them (1 Samuel 8:22).Continue Reading