All posts filed under: Jesus

easter 4a: a reflection

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Acts / Jesus / Lectionary / New Testament / Religion / Year A

Towards the end of the second chapter of “Acts,” we find a summary of how the first followers of Jesus lived: They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. Awe came upon everyone, because many wonders and signs were being done by the apostles. All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds […]

Easter, a reflection

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Creation / Easter / Gospels / Holy Week / Jesus / Lectionary / New Testament / Religion / Soteriology / Year A

On the day of the resurrection, some of the followers of Jesus went to the tomb. They were going to make the final preparations of Jesus’ body, for he had been buried with haste. And when they got there, they were met with the amazing revelation that Jesus was…no longer dead. He was dead, but now he wasn’t anymore. He was very much alive. And different. Mary didn’t recognize him. He had to speak her […]

Good Friday, a reflection

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Christology / devil / Easter / Gospels / Holy Week / Jesus / Lectionary / Lent / New Testament / satan / sin / Theology / Year A

I have this wonderful painting hanging in my office, “Cimabue after Disney” by the Rev. Dr. Dennis McNally, SJ. Jesus is muscled, teary-eyed, and dead. Blood trickles down his hands and feet. He’s also naked, and exposed just enough that that’s the one thing people notice when they see it for the first time. Subtly, at the bottom of the painting is a less-known feature. A mouse, with a dark halo, lapping up some of […]

last epiphany a: overcome with fear

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Gospels / Jesus / Lectionary / New Testament / Religion / sin / temptation / Year A

The mission of the Church is to be a vessel where transformation can happen. Where lives may be changed by the Presence of God. Where people are reconciled to God in Christ, and to each other as neighbors. That transformation isn’t a small thing. It’s not a fresh coat of paint. It’s not even an upgraded operating system. It’s metamorphosis. It’s wholesale change. From the bottom up. From the inside out. And, to be honest…it’s […]

epiphany 5a reflection: lose the morons

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Current Affairs / Epiphany / Gospels / Jesus / Lectionary / New Testament / Religion / Year A

It is to be noted that the semantic parallel of “low-grade” with imbecile is far closer than might have been expected. (The Anchor Bible Commentary: Matthew by W. F. Albright and C. S. Mann. Page 55.) That is, quite possibly, the funniest statement that I’ve ever read in a biblical commentary. Had I been enjoying a beverage whilst reading that statement, I would have soiled the book. Albright and Mann have a quite different translation […]

advent 4a reflection: looking back

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Advent / Exodus / Gospels / Jesus / Year A

Everything in the beginning of Matthew’s Gospel – which tells of God doing this wondrous thing in the birth of Jesus – seems to point backwards. Matthew begins his Gospel with a genealogy, starting with the Patriarch Abraham. Then we have the reference to Isaiah’s prophesy that the child shall be called “Emmanuel.” And then the child is given the name “Jesus,” which not only means “God saves” but in Hebrew it’s also the name […]

advent 1a reflection: like a thief

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Advent / Eschatology / Jesus / Lectionary / New Testament / Year A

The following is a reflection on 24:36-44, the Gospel Lesson appointed for the 1st Sunday of Advent, Year A. I was sitting on the couch. Watching TV. Who knows what great and inspiring programming I was zoning out to… My wife yelled from upstairs: “Rick…RICK!” “Yes?” I said, rather annoyed that she hadn’t had the grace to wait for a commercial break. “My water broke.”

keeping it simple – a reflection on Luke 17:5-10

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Gospels / Jesus / Lectionary / New Testament / Religion / Year C

The following is a reflection on Luke 17:5-10, the Gospel lesson appointed for Proper 22C according to the Revised Common Lectionary. The apostles ask Jesus to “increase” their faith. For me, when a parishioner walks into my office and asks for help increasing and deepening their faith, I’m thrilled! I break out some good books, talk about their prayer life, get them signed up to serve Communion on Sunday… But Jesus? He brushes the disciples […]