Category: Homily

Mark Link, SJ

One Heck of a Story – Homily for the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year A

There were many newsworthy events this past week and there are many more going on this weekend; but there’s one event that happened this past Wednesday that you probably didn’t hear about: one of the world’s best-selling authors passed away at the age of 92. They say that if a book sells more than 20,000 copies in a year, then it’s in the top one percent of all book sales. This author sold over 10 million copies of his books. And yet, despite being so successful, you probably...

Gonzaga Prep's Sound of Music

An Overture for Christmas – Homily for the 4th Sunday of Advent

Back in November, Brenda and I got to see our daughter Teresa perform in Gonzaga Prep’s production of The Sound of Music. I know some of you here are theater moms or dads, and your kids have been in shows too, shows like Ferris’ The Addams Family, Fiddler on the Roof, or Shrek. Or maybe some of you are theater kids and have seen your parents perform in Ham on Regal. So you know how it is that you end up seeing the same show multiple times. You...

Christ and the Good Thief by Titian

Famous Last Words: Homily for the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

A while back a friend shared a website with me that was a collection of the last words of famous people, and it was very interesting. Some of their final words were humble. For example, Leonard DaVinci said, “I have offended God and mankind because my work did not reach the quality it should have.” Some tried to be prophetic. Nostradamus, for instance said, “Tomorrow I will not be here.” He was right. And there were some who didn’t realize they were speaking their final words. The last...

Moses and Amalekites

C.S. Lewis, Joy, and Persistent Prayer: Homily for the 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year C

The dramatic scene from the first reading, with Moses raising the staff of God during battle, and Joshua mowing down Amalek, almost feels like a scene from The Lord of the Rings. But it’s not Tolkien that I find most helpful in breaking open today’s scripture, but rather one of his best friends, C.S. Lewis. Lewis, as many of you know, was the author of the Narnia series, that wonderful set of books about Aslan, Prince Caspian, and the magical world on the other side of the wardrobe. Lewis...

Oceans 11

Commending the Con Artist – Homily for the Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year C

Today’s gospel account of the dishonest steward reminds me of those con artist movies like Ocean’s Eleven or The Sting, you know, those movies featuring criminals who are trying to con people out of their money. They come up with these elaborate plans, like robbing three casinos at once, or tricking the rich man into betting all his money on a fake horse race. And despite the fact that they’re criminals, we find ourselves rooting for them, hoping that their plans succeed. And usually, somewhere in the middle...

Karate Kid - Wax on Wax Off

Wax on, Wax Off – Homily for the Twenty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C

Once upon a time there was a preacher who was worried about his congregation. They were good people, people who loved Jesus, people who had embraced the Christian way of life. But there came a time when they became exhausted. They were tired— tired of serving the world, tired of worship, tired of being seen as peculiar and whispered about in society, tired of the spiritual struggle, tired of trying to keep their prayer life going. Attendance at church was down, the people were losing confidence, and many...

Wedding Cake

The Imperfect Rehearsal Dinner – Homily for the 16th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Today’s readings offer us a contrast between two people visited by the Lord. The Lord comes to their homes, and we see two different reactions; I’m not speaking here of Martha and Mary, but of Martha and Abraham. Now, there are definitely differences between the way Martha responds to her encounter with Jesus, and the way Mary responds. But if we focus only on Martha and Mary, we may get the mistaken idea that Mary’s contemplation is superior to Martha’s service. But by comparing and contrasting Martha and...

Ryan and Teresa Senger

Castles in the Air: A Wedding Homily for My Son and His Bride

Yesterday I had the great honor to officiate the wedding of my son, Ryan, and his wife Teresa. Here is the homily from that ceremony: Brenda and I have had the best time watching Ryan and Teresa get ready for this day, and we’ve enjoyed getting ready for it ourselves. One of the things I had to do for the wedding was pick up the dry cleaning a few days ago from a place out in the valley, off Pines near Broadway. After I picked it up, instead...

Bible

In Your Own Words – Homily for the 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year C

One of the most dreaded phrases in classrooms everywhere is “in your own words.” “Explain the causes of the Civil War in your own words.” “Describe the process of photosynthesis in your own words.” Teachers love the phrase because it requires students to do deep thinking; and students dread the phrase, because it requires them to do deep thinking. It may seem cruel of me to be talking about school so soon after summer vacation has begun, but I only bring it up because of what happens in...

Andrei Rublev- The Trinity

An Icon of the Holy Trinity – Homily for Trinity Sunday Year C

Not long ago we celebrated the Ascension, and this was the first year we could celebrate that feast with the beautiful icon of the Ascension greeting us as we walked into the Church. On this Solemnity of the Holy Trinity I am reminded of another icon, perhaps the most famous icon of them all, the icon of the Holy Trinity by Andrei Rublev. Rublev painted, or wrote, this icon in 1425 for the church of St. Sergius near Moscow, Russia, and it’s regarded as one of the highest...

Appearance Behind Locked Doors

Peace Be With You – Homily from the Sixth Sunday of Easter

Suppose we had a time machine and we traveled back in time to talk to Simon Peter before he met Jesus. And what if we asked him, “What would a peaceful life look like to you?” I wonder what he might say. Maybe he’d say, “Well, a peaceful life would be one where my fishing business would continue to thrive. I would catch lots of fish each day, sell them all, and support my family comfortably. My wife and I would live in harmony and raise our children...

Rick and Ilsa

The Greatest Love Story of All Time – Homily for Holy Thursday 2016

The world is full of great love stories. We see them in literature and film and in history: stories like Casablanca, Pride and Prejudice, and Titanic. Lovers like Romeo and Juliet, Jane Eyre and Mr. Rochester, even Matthew Crawley and Lady Mary. We all relate to a good love story. What makes them so powerful are the obstacles that the lovers try to overcome. Sometimes they’re successful and their story ends in joy; and sometimes they’re not and the story ends in tragedy. But they remain great stories...

Henry V Kenneth Branagh

Henry V and the Transfiguration: Homily for the 2nd Sunday of Lent

One of the greatest speeches in all of literature is the St. Crispin’s Day Speech by William Shakespeare from his play, Henry V. It’s October 25, in the year 1415, and King Henry of England and his men are about to fight the French in what will come to be known as the Battle of Agincourt. Henry’s men are exhausted and sick. They’ve been fighting for months, and they’ve just finished a long and grueling siege of Harfleur castle. As they move across the French countryside trying to...

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

The Force Awakens – Homily for the 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year C

I’m sure you’ve heard about the new Star Wars movie, The Force Awakens. It’s breaking all box office records, and I’ve seen it myself a couple of times. One of the things I find interesting about this new Star Wars trilogy is that it begins in the same way as the original trilogy with Luke Skywalker. If you haven’t seen it yet, I’m not giving much away by saying that the main character starts the story on a desert planet feeling forsaken, feeling abandoned, just like Luke Skywalker...

The Visitation by Lorenzo Monaco

Mature Faith and the Visitation – Homily for the Fourth Sunday of Advent

I remember when Brenda was pregnant with each of our four kids, how she would often talk with other women who were also pregnant. There’s a bond that forms between mothers. Only they understand what it’s like to carry a living being within themselves. Only they understand the cravings, the anxieties, the joys. They learn from each other, commiserate with each other, reassure each other. And that bond doesn’t end after the babies are born. It continues as the children get their first teeth, get out of diapers,...