Posted on Nov 19, 2019 in Homilies

17 November 2019 Patricia Schultz is a best selling author of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die. In the book she chronicled the incredible sights to see and places to be before we die–just in case we didn’t have our own list of those places. In explaining why she wrote the book, Schultz cited Mark Twain who said, “Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did.” As we approach the end of the Church year–next weekend is the last in this Lucan cycle, the author presents a Jesus who speaks about ultimate concerns. Jesus wants us...

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Posted on Oct 29, 2019 in Homilies

27 October 2019 One of my best friends has always lived a very simple life. She died this past summer. She didn’t always have an easy life. She single-handedly raised her daughter after her daughter’s father deserted her. She had to start from scratch at age 40 raising a child and finding a job. I remember visiting her once as she lived in a roach infested apartment. I wondered how she could live there, I wondered why she wasn’t angry and bitter. I asked her to let me find her daughter’s father and shake a little money out of him. I remember she looked at me very seriously.  “No,...

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Posted on Oct 24, 2019 in Homilies

20 OCTOBER 2019 Without her husband, a woman in most ancient cultures had no voice, had no rights, had no defender, was powerless. So, for Jesus to use a widow as the central character in this story is quite a turnabout. What do widows have to teach us? What do the poor have to teach us? Several years ago I was visiting Tom Krieg in Chicago at Mundelein Seminary. Tom is now ordained and is a pastor in Eau Claire. Tom decided we should go to his all-time favorite restaurant–The Modol. It’s Indian.  Tom is quite a character–I didn’t know what to expect. We also had a student...

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Posted on Oct 15, 2019 in Homilies

13 October 2019 Do any of you remember the film,  Regarding Henry? The film starred Harrison Ford who portrayed Henry Turner,  a high-powered, high-priced Wall Street lawyer. Henry stopped at nothing, nothing to win. Everything–even his wife and daughter, were carefully crafted to project the image of a successful, winning attorney. All of this changes one night when Henry stops at a convenience store to buy a package of cigarettes. Without realizing it he walks into a robbery in progress. The gunman shoots Henry in the head. Henry lives but his memory is erased. His long...

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Posted on Aug 6, 2019 in Church News, Homilies

4 August 2019 About ten years ago my parents made their will. I was visiting at the time and when I got back to Eau Claire, I emailed my brother about the details of the will. Basically, the will says that he will get half and I will get half. He emailed me back the following: “George, I don’t know what you think you know about the will, But I understand they are leaving everything to you.” I responded: “Charlie, as far as I can tell mom and dad are scrupulously fair. When we were children we always received the same number of Christmas presents and birthday presents. The only time they were...

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Posted on Jul 30, 2019 in Church News, Homilies

28 July 2019 If you were down to your last $10, what would you spend it on? I recently read a story that made me think about that. It was about a friendless man who was down to his last $10. Did he spend it on food?  Nope. He said that while food fills the belly, it doesn’t give you a reason to live Did he spend it on a bed for the night?  Nope. He said,  rest doesn’t give you hope. Did he spend it on booze?  Nope. He said,  drink can be a poison when consumed alone. What do you think this man spent his last $10 on? He spent it on a haircut.  Why? Because he...

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Posted on Jul 23, 2019 in Church News, Homilies

21 July 2019 There are only just the two of us, my brother and I. And like most siblings we are alike in many ways and in many ways we are quite dissimilar. Those who know us both say we have got it wrong. My brother should have been the priest. I should have run a large company. But I was born on Christmas–me and Jesus, and he was born on Thanksgiving–just he and the bounty of the harvest.It’s odd how things turn out isn’t it? Many years ago my brother purchased a new home in Oshkosh. When I asked him what prompted him to buy that particular house, he said: “Because it’s next to the...

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Posted on Jul 18, 2019 in Church News, Homilies

14 July 2019 What did the lawyer do? In other stories told by the gospel writers we have some inkling about what happened. The rich young man goes away sad. Disciples drop everything and follow him, Mary and Martha remain faithful friends to the end and beyond. But this lawyer what does he do? Does he follow the command Jesus gives him: “Go and do likewise,” I believe the real crux of this story–not the one Jesus tells, but the one the Lucan author tells, is just that. What does the lawyer do? That question turns this from a theoretical discussion of“Who is my neighbor?” to a...

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