Posted on Mar 27, 2021 in Church News, Homilies

28 March 2021 I was very young, a child, when I learned that the crowd’s choice of Barabbas over Jesus was a symbol of our fickleness, our inability to love long and well. And in my child’s mind I remember pledging that I would not be this way– I think every child probably does that.  Every child’s heart goes out to this innocent man and promises with Peter:  “Even if I have to die, I will not desert you.” I wanted to see myself that way, and believe it could be that way. It was a childish pledge, a promise that didn’t know the harsh...

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Posted on Mar 20, 2021 in Church News, Homilies

21 March 2021 The Greeks, we are told in the gospel, want to see Jesus. It’s a very strange interchange. They don’t approach Jesus directly, and, they only want to see him,             Not hear him, not speak with him.             Just see him Who is this Jesus they only want to see? He’s a rock star.  This incident happens right after the resuscitation of Lazarus. And, how does Jesus respond? With that curious phrase we all know so well:  “Unless a grain of wheat falls to...

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Posted on Mar 13, 2021 in Church News, Homilies

14 March 2021 Over the years I have had the good fortune to watch a lot of people grow up. From the young people at St. Pat’s to the students at Newman, to the children in this parish. In particular one child was only 12 days old when I first met him. His parents were in the military and when they came home from Berlin, they brought him. He turned out to be an only child, and in the beginning I was sure that would mean a spoiled child. His parents have always wanted the best for him– And they had more patience with him than I did. When he was stubborn and would not eat his vegetables,...

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Posted on Mar 6, 2021 in Church News, Homilies

7 March 2021 Earlier one Lent, a man came to me that I knew quite well.             He said: “I need conversion—really a revolution in my life             Something to clean my life out to turn it around.             I need it, I want it, but I am afraid of it.” Frankly, I didn’t know what to say to that man I’ve known to be a gentle and kind man. He had always seemed to me to have gone through the conversion process....

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Posted on Feb 27, 2021 in Church News, Homilies

28 February 2021 The opening line of the first reading is really so poignant: “God put Abraham to the test.” We think that’s so unfair. Why does God test Abraham? Why does God test us? What’s the point? And, yet, much of our lives seems like a test. Will we be faithful?  Will we be honest?  Will we love?  Will we be generous? Will we …….? Someone once said that every time a baby is born, God holds his breath: “Will that child love him?” What incredible power God has given us in our ability to choose. That’s what the “test” is really, our power to choose. Each of us...

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Posted on Feb 20, 2021 in Church News, Homilies

21 February 2021 In Thornton Wilder’s play, “The Skin of Our Teeth,” one of the major characters expresses what she believes is the reason her marriage was able to endure.  She says to her husband: I didn’t marry you George, because you were perfect. I didn’t even marry you because I loved  you. But rather I married you because you gave me a promise. That promise  made up for your faults, and the promise I gave you made up for mine. Two imperfect people got married, and it was the promise that made the marriage.  When our children were...

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Posted on Feb 13, 2021 in Church News, Homilies

14 February 2021 On one of my January vacations I stayed with my two of my friends in a condo that was attached to a health spa kind of place. Mostly, it had a very large and well-equipped work out building. One morning, instead of walking the mountain as I liked to do, I went to the work out building and did some strength training. As I am working on the curls machine, two women come and stand right in front of me. One of them begins to complain because her gardener has disappeared. He’d been sent back to Mexico on a sweep the local sheriff was conducting. “I’m glad they caught him,” she...

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Posted on Feb 6, 2021 in Church News, Homilies

7 February 2021 Some of you may remember that in 1985 Fr. John Rossiter, Ferdinand Roth, William Hammes             Were killed at St. Patrick’s Church in Onalaska. For those of us who knew Fr. Rossiter and the men killed with him it was a terrible shock. Perhaps one of the most poignant moments for me as I watched the television coverage was an interview with Bishop Paul. In the interview, Bp Paul was asked if this kind of violence, particularly when done to a close personal friend didn’t shake his faith. It was a natural question...

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