Sunday, July 1, 2012


This week has been a tension filled one for our country and our freedoms.

The issue of healthcare is once again center stage but also our freedoms, for if government can compel or penalize us to buy something, in this case healthcare, then what other control will we be "taxed" with? Please read and be informed, check out information for Fortnight for Freedom I want to be clear that I am NOT against providing quality access to healthcare for all, in fact I believe it is a right, but what I am opposed to is the violation of the 1st Ammendment to the Constitution, compromise of freedom, and the dangerous slope towards socialism that Obamacare has put us on.

Now regardless of where you fall on the debate - pro-Obamacare, pro-Romney, or another solution, WHAT IS IMPORTANT is the right to have quality healthcare. Interestingly enough, this weekend, in scripture we hear about "JesusCare"

In Jesus' healing of Jairus' daughter and the woman with hemorrhages Jesus shows us His power to heal and make us whole. Contrary to what the First Reading tells us today, that we are made for life and to live fully, the truth is that whether it be our fault, the fault of another, or the fault of our circumstances, we have suffering and brokenness in our lives!

We learn that Jesus offers us true life if we but have have faith in Him. However, our faith, our trust in the Lord is something that we must do a check-up on every so often, just like going to the doctor for a check-up on our health, our spiritual health needs the same, if not more, care. We need to examine our trust in God and have an openness to trusting God because unlike a doctor that can, in most circumstances, map out the way to recovery or mitigating a health issue, Jesus' way works in ways that are not always on par with our expectations or assumptions.

When we look at the healed woman, despite the multitude of people that may have touched Jesus, He knew something was different about her encounter with Him. Jesus knew because of her great faith, that she was healed, His power was accessed. Common sense would have said, like the disciples, that it could have been anyone brushing up against Jesus and so to ask such a specific question, "Who touched me," does not make much sense. Again, Jesus knew something was different about the woman's touch and the healing power she accessed.

When we look at Jairus' daugther being healed. Common sense would have said all was said and done, Jairus' daughter was dead but because of Jairu's faith in Jesus, the divine power to heal was accessed, and Jairus' daughter lived. This is another instance where Jesus' healing power was accessed and broke through a troubled situation.

A few things as we live our faith this week, as we take time to access JesusCare! First, may we come to know Jesus' profound desire for us to find healing and wholeness through Him and His power to save! Second, let us engage in an activity that accesses Jesus' healing power - through prayer, Eucharistic Adoration, Reconciliation, forgiving someone, etc. Lastly, let us remember that our access to JesusCare is free and requires only our TRUST in Him - no matter where we are, who we are, where we've been, where we are going, or whatever someone may do to us - TRUST GOD!!!

Readings for the 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time (year/cycle B)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

J. Bap ~ Sunday Homily 6/24/2012

J. Bap. ...a scriptural abbreviation for John the Baptist used in some scholarly books I have seen.

If nothing else, one thing we can take away from the Feast of the Nativity of John the Baptist is it's about Who I am and Who I am Called To Be Why is this?

For starters, we are clued into the reality that we are to learn from the whole of St. John's life, from the circumstances that brought him into the world and what he did by the very fact that we not only celebrate his death but also his birth. Typically we do not find ourselves celebrating the birth of too many people throughout the course of the Church year with the exception of our Blessed Mother and of course Jesus (and anyone else I may have forgotten - but only b/c if I did, it's b/c it's rare!)! Therefore, since we celebrate the Nativity of J. Bap, we are alerted to take note of his whole life and what we can learn from it.

There are 3 things that John the Baptist did that we can incorporate into our lives and these 3 things we can say are the "3 Ps" which are POINTER, PROCLAIMER, and PREPARER.

John the Baptist was a POINTER simply by the way he lived. St. John's life's mission was to point to Christ and that he most certainly did. For us, we too, are POINTERS to Christ. This comes simply from the way we live and the decisions we make. Either what we do and who are will point to Christ or by the same token will point in directions not oriented toward Christ. And so we ask ourselves, are my decisions, values, actions, etc. pointing to a life oriented in Christ or not?

J. Bap we know, was also a PROCLAIMER, a sharer of the Good News. John the Baptist told us point blank, to prepare the way of the Lord encouraging people to repent and performing Baptisms of repentence in the Jordan. St. John was very vocal about what his life was about, where it was headed, and what he needed to do to get there. In the same way do we everyday assert the very fact that we are beloved children of God with a specific meaning and purpose? Are our lives oriented towards the promised life to come, lived with a sense of being created for more than what this world can offer? Are we PROCLAIMERS of the Good News by the stories we share? To share The Story means not only the literal telling of a story of faith but also comes in the simple ways we make our faith known. For example, sharing scripture or a prayer or a word of support on someone's facebook page or on your twitter account or on a blog such as this. We are called to be PROCLAIMERS in ways big and small.

Lastly, St. John was a PREPARER and teaches us to do the same. J. Bap literally did prepare the way of the Lord but in doing so, he also taught us how to prepare the way and for some of us that means getting out of the way; an openness if you will to God's will. John the Baptist was faithful to what God called him to do, but he also didn't try to be the Messiah either, in other words, St. John did his job and let God do His. John the Baptist was open to the possibilities of what God would do with preparing the way. Elizabeth and Zechariah too were open to the possibilities of God, of the possibility of having a child in their age and of naming him John (a name not in his family) and what all that would mean. How often do we pray about something without being open to the outcome or the possibilities of God? Sometimes it is easy to pray about something and then try to do everything we can to make the petition happen, rather then allowing God to work it out in the way He knows is best for us or in other words, to simply trust or have faith.

This week let us learn from the life of John the Baptist and realize the POINTER, PROCLAIMER, and PREPARER in each of us and what we need to do allow these 3 Ps to become a greater lived reality.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


In Matthew 5:48 Jesus says, "So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect." This seems like quite the insurmountable task doesn't it? After all, who on earth has ever been perfect, besides Jesus and the Blessed Virgin Mary of course?! At the same time this is Jesus' reminder to us of what we are made to live for and that is: GREATNESS. We are made and destined for greatness. Greatness in the way we love, forgive, use our talents and live! So when we hear the Lord tell us to be perfect, it is a reminder to us that this is our goal, that each day we work to perfect ourselves to love perfectly as God has loved us. Therefore, let us strive for greatness in all we do. Amen.

Monday, June 18, 2012

You Have Heard It Said...

...this line of Jesus' in the Gospel according to Matthew today (Mt. 5:38-42) leads into his challenge to our way of thinking, of turning the other cheek rather than pursuing an eye for an eye. When do we need a change or some Divine intervention in our thought and perspective? When we are pondering a decision or seeking consultation we often hear from others something along the lines of "well so-in-so says..." or "they say..." but when considering these different points of view, do we ever take time to Cross check them against what Jesus and our faith tell us? Or do we accept things we hear without any faitful/faith filled consultation? It is equally, if not more important, to remember that Jesus also said in this Gospel passage "but I say to you." In all we do, may we make choices and decisions based not only upon what we have heard and learned but also upon what Christ and our faith say to us.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

This "little while"

‘A little while and you will not see me, and again a little while and you will see me,’ and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” So they said, “What is this ‘little while’ of which he speaks? We do not know what he means.(Jn 16:17-18) A discussion of the disciples of what Jesus is trying to get at prior to His death on the cross. Jesus was preparing them for what was to transpire and yet in someway until everything unfolded this 'you will not see me' perhaps was not fully understood or realized. Two thousand years later after the Ascension we await Christ's return to earth. However, in our fact chasing and validating literal world, rather than our faith being the guiding factor in our anticipation, we see many programs on the History Channel for example, that try to 'decode' the Bible or predict or analyze the signs which would indicate Christ's return to earth, which in many ways negates faith or detracts us from the faith that we should have. This is dangerous temptation for us to get fixated upon. For it is not about the time or place but rather the preparedness of heart and faith that one has that is important and makes the difference. In other words, it is about our faith and how we practice it in the here and now that is important and that will be enough. For Scripture also tells us to stay away and be ready for we know not the hour nor the time the Lord is coming (Mt. 25:13) which indicates that our responsibility lies not with knowing when but rather with faith and believing. Furthermore, we can never be certain about future things as we can be certain about how our lives of faith are being lived out and therefore, may we be about the business of living our faith the best we can and in faith, in trust, leave the rest where it belongs, in God's will.


Hey Everyone! Effective June 12, 2012, I transfer to my 2nd assignment!!! St. Gabriel Parish 9925 Johnnycake Ridge Road Concord Township, OH 44060

Saturday, March 24, 2012

5th Sunday of Lent

John 12:24-26 - words of wisdom...

Amen, amen, I say to you,
unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies,
it remains just a grain of wheat;
but if it dies, it produces much fruit.
Whoever loves his life loses it,
and whoever hates his life in this world
will preserve it for eternal life.
Whoever serves me must follow me,
and where I am, there also will my servant be.
The Father will honor whoever serves me.

Friday, March 16, 2012

STOP the HHS Mandate!!! Defend your rights!

The HHS Mandate is dangerous to all Americans! It is dangerous because of the attack on morality and the free practice of religion and because it also opens the door to the government mandating other things as well.

Please Read:

The First Amendment even states: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Some perspective in light of the Chardon tragedy...

SOME PERSPECTIVE... along with the tragedy that occurred at Chardon High School this week comes dealing with the questions and wrestling with the big life questions about how, why, what's important, and where do I go from here. When I was a senior in high school, the tragedy at Columbine in Littleton, Colorado happened and the experience of being a normal 'safe' high school student changed forever. Since then a number of tragedies have happened from Virginia Tech to Chardon. Steve Angrisano is a Catholic musician and youth minister who lives in Littleton, CO and experienced aftermath of the shooting at Columbine first hand with the youth in his parish. In light of what has happened in Chardon, I have found listening to Steve Angrisano's "Columbine Testimony" and "You Are My God/Here I Am, Lord," which are his reflections about Columbine given shortly after the Virginia Tech shootings, to be particularly helpful and powerful in the coping process and these can be downloaded on itunes, I recommend listening to them. Lastly, I have come to realize that as we move forward and search for meaning what we can do is make an extra effort to live out our faith the best way we can and in the memory of those whose lives were lost to be the positive influence and change we desire to see in this world from the everyday small things to fulfilling big ideas. May we all find a way to live out our faith more and be the change we wish to see in this world. Prayers for Chardon and peace be with you all! Fr. Ed

Chardon Shooting

I am sure that you have heard by now the unfortunate incident at Chardon High School today. First, we keep the victims, families, and Chardon Community in prayer. Second, and perhaps more important in terms of learning and going forward, especially for any teen or young adult, PLEASE, if you find yourself alone, in a dark place, or in trouble know THERE IS HOPE, personally I can ...say that I have been in dark places in my life especially in high school and I know that no matter how dark, if you reach out you can get to the light. Again if you are in trouble reach out to a parent, teacher, youth minister, campus minister, priest, nun, or someone else you trust and ask for help.... AND as a person of Christ, no matter what your differences are with classmates or any of your acquaintances be kind and understanding and where there is conflict seek peace! Also, reach out to those who are in trouble, a simple smile, or asking how your day is can be the key that could unlock the door to diffusing someone's hurt. If you know of someone who is struggling or know something just isn't right say something to someone who can help! In peace, prayer, and hope - Fr. Ed

Monday, February 20, 2012

Are humans like ogres?

In the first installment of the Shrek film series there is a scene where Shrek and Donkey are going to rescue Princess Fiona from the clutches of the castle with the fire breathing dragon. Along the way Donkey asks Shrek, "What are ogres like?" to which Shrek proceeds to tell Donkey, ogres are like onions because they have layers. Perhaps the same could said of us, can it not?

Each of us has layers, different elements that make up who we are, from our personalities to our personal experiences and within all this there are layers to us that everyone knows, just like the outer layer of an onion is exposed and evident to the inner most layer, perhaps the layer only we ourselves and God know. In between the outer and inner layers there are those layers that are known to some and not others, those that we freely share, and still others that we keep guarded.

During the season of Lent it is about peeling back the layers, examining what is there and growing. There is a lot of talk about what we sacrifice in Lent but there should also be equal talk about what we will take on as a means of growth. Reflecting upon the layers in our lives should help reveal where we need to grow.

Just as in the Gospel this Sunday where the friends of the paralytic broke through the roof to lower their friend down into the presence of Christ so too we are called to peel back or break through the layers of our lives in order to place ourselves into Christ's presence in a deeper way. This may mean we have to let our guard down, to let the walls in our lives come down. This may mean not only taking in and examining what perceive about ourselves but also listening for the truth in what others say about us.

It is not easy to expose and open ourselves up to change and transformation. Sometimes it is easier to stay in the comfort of where we are, even if where we are is not exactly where we want to be, need to be, or is the best for us. As St. Paul reminds us that God has put the Spirit into our hearts and with that a "Yes," reminding us that indeed through God's grace all things are possible, not easy, but possible.

During Lent let us not be afraid to examine the layers of our lives, and with courage, honesty, faith, and an open heart, allow the Lord to transform and bring us to new life through His life, death, and resurrection, i.e. The Paschal Mystery.

Sunday's Mass readings:

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

James 1:19-21

"Know this, my dear brothers and sisters:
everyone should be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger
for anger does not accomplish
the righteousness of God.
Therefore, put away all filth and evil excess
and humbly welcome the word that has been planted in you
and is able to save your souls."

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Ss. Cyril & Methodius Day!

Christ is The Love we share. Yes, in our commercial world it is none other than Valentine's Day and if you are a Clevelander like me, you know how busy the drive thru booths at Malley's Chocolates will be today.

However, truthfully speaking, today is actually the feast day of Ss. Cyril and Methodius. Cyril a monk, and Methodius a bishop are brothers who ministered to the Slavic people and in particular in translating liturgical texts among other things they did.

My brothers and sisters, we know that when we share Christ with others, like Ss. Cyril and Methodius, we share Love. In the spirit and memory of Ss. Cyril and Methodius, while the world shares cards, chocolates, and roses may we share the Love of Christ which ministers to every human need, endures for all eternity, and is the fulfillment of our earthly desires and short comings as the Gospel relates to us today.

Prayer After Communion
O God, Father of all nations, who make us sharers in the one Bread and the one Spirit and heirs of the eternal banquet, grant in your kindness on this feast day of Saints Cyril and Methodius, that the multitude of your children, persevering in the same fatih, may be united in building up the Kingdom of justice and peace. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

To learn more about Ss. Cyril and Methodius go to:

Today's Readings:

Monday, February 13, 2012

Reading the Signs

In today's Gospel the Pharisees seek a sign from Jesus and yet Jesus says no sign will be given this generation. Why? It is because Christ Himself is the sign and there is no need for another.

How often do we ask for a sign? Seek a sign from God? What is so important about signs? Well first, we are called to recognize the signs of God's presence in our lives but to seek a sign is another matter unto itself. For seeking a sign indicates we are seeking proof to validate a belief and/or a point whereas recognizing a sign is a matter of simply growing in an awareness of what God is revealing all around us, not that we seek it but it's that we grow in awareness.

What can we say about signs? When we talk about signs that help us recognize God's presence do we only look to the positive? A time when we had a warm fuzzy or someone reached out to us or did something for us unexpectedly? But! How about the negative?

For example when our faith and/or the practice of it is tested, like what is taking place in Congress and the the controversy over abortion and contraception, or we are being persecuted for our faith; when we persevere and conquer, is that not a sign too? A sign of strength?! A sign of courage?! A sign of a faith that is active and will not settle for that which is contrary to it?!

May we recognize the signs all around us, through the thick and thin, through the positive and challenging times.

Today's readings: