Homilies are the oldest form of preaching; they have been handed down to us from Christ himself. Homilies are an essential part of our worship and a continuation of the Apostolic mission. Homilies provide insight into the meaning of the scripture and how the scripture relates to our lives as parishioners in the Church.
To help us reflect on the scripture and on the lessons we can draw from them, here are some highlights from our weekly homilies as well as links to the homilies themselves. Each of these homilies has a message we can draw upon to become better disciples of Christ.
Like what you see? Let me know!St. Joseph's Homily Take-Aways (click on the bold title below to see the take-aways and the homilies, click again to close):
> October 15th 2017: Deacon Greg on Sharing the Lord's Feast
- Everyone is invited to the Lord’s feast but many who are invited to the feast do not attend.
- When we say “Amen” we are accepting the Lord’s invitation to join together with Him.
- Eating with each other is a commitment.
- Share Communion with the Lord and with each other: share in the Kingdom, be transformed, and become a disciple of Christ.
To see Deacon Greg’s homily on Sharing the Lord’s Feast click here.
> October 1st 2017: Father Frazier on Meaning What We Say
- “Say what you mean and mean what you say.”
- We are called to surrender to the Father’s will.
- Christ came to bring us into a relationship with the Father, to bring us salvation. The gift of salvation in the death of Christ was given to all of us.
- The emptying of ourselves brings about a resurrection. Make this faith count.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on meaning what we say click here.
> September 23, 2017: Father Leo on God's Forgiveness, Love, and Mercy
- God’s unfathomable mercy and forgiveness has no limits and no bounds.
- “My ways are not your ways and my justice is not your justice.”
- Who are we to judge? Envy and resentment keeps us from seeing God’s love, God’s mercy, and God’s foregiveness.
- Experiencing an intimate relationship with Christ leads us to impart forgiveness, love, and mercy to the people that we meet.
To see Father Leo’s homily on God’s forgiveness, love, and mercy click here.
> September 17 2017: Deacon Scott on Forgiving
- God will forgive us an infinite number of times. All we have to do is ask and have repentance.
- Forgiveness is not forgetting what happened. Forgiveness is not saying what happened is okay. Forgiveness is letting go of anger.
- Forgive so that it doesn’t build up inside of you.
- Forgive and you will be forgiven too.
To see Deacon Scott’s homily on forgiving click here.
> September 10 2017: Father Frazier on Reconciliation
- When we bring about reconciliation and unity we become the living sign and expression of the presence of Christ.
- Before we can evangelize one another we have to have that evangelization, that good news, in our own heart.
- Love should be totally giving, sacrifice and generosity without end, and forgiveness and mercy without end.
- Every moment of reconciliation is a moment of encounter with Christ.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on reconciliation click here.
> September 3 2017: Father Frazier on Letting Go of Our Crosses
- Many times our crosses are very much our own. Faith bears us through.
- We’re called by Christ to just let go. We are called to die to self that we might live forever.
- “Unless you are willing to take up your cross every day you cannot be my disciple.” Difficulties are moments of meeting the person of God.
- We have only to trust in him, to not be afraid, and to take the risk. Have the courage, take the risk, and reach beyond ourselves.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on letting go of our crosses click here.
> August 27 2017: Father Frazier on Unity
- “Whatever you loose on earth will be loosed also in heaven. Whatever you bind on earth will be bound also in heaven.”
- The dogma of collegiality and communion is that the Pope is the leader among bishops and among many. The whole community has the ability to bind and to loose.
- The sign of the Church that Christ has left for us is one of unity. We are responsible to bring about that unity. We are all involved in bringing the oneness to the life of the Church.
- “Do this in memory of me.”
To see Father Frazier’s homily on unity click here.
> August 6th, 2017: Father Leo on the Transfiguration
- The significance of the Transfiguration is to give the apostles courage.
- We ask for strength and fortitude to keep believing. We pray that as we walk in our own spiritual journies we too are strengthened.
- Be aware and be on guard against the temptations of Satan.
- It takes courage to walk in Jesus’ footsteps. Pray that our strength will be fortified so that our hearts are transfigured.
To see Father Leo’s homily on the Transfiguration click here.
> July 30 2017: Father Frazier on the Kingdom of God
- The Kingdom of God is about you and me today.
- We must look for, find, and be a witness to the Kingdom of God as it is present in each of us today. The Kingdom is present, the Kingdom is real.
- The Kingdom of Christ is one that embraces all people.By our acts of compassion, understanding, and forgiveness.
- The Kingdom of God is within you.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on the Kingdom of God click here.
> July 23 2017: Father Frazier on God's Time
- God is extremely patient: God’s time is what we’re really on.
- Spend God’s time wisely and justly. God doesn’t like timidity.
- We should have God and His mission as a priority.
- “We should be living our lives not by the clock, but by the compass:” Make changes so that your life is guided by God’s time, not by our own.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on God’s Time click here.
> July 16 2017: Deacon Scott on the Seeds of Evangelization
- The sower and the seeds parable is about us receiving the Word of God and the way our disposition is.
- The Word of God manifests itself through evangelization.
- Everybody has the ability to do something. Saint Mother Theresa: “No-one can do everything, but everyone can do something.”
- Let the Spirit in you grow.
To see Deacon Scott’s homily on being the seeds of evangelization click here.
> July 9 2017: Father Frazier on Being Humble of Heart
- We’ve been called to live in the spirit, not in the flesh.
- Humility is recognizing who you are. Humility is a strong, powerful virtue.
- How are we looking out for those who are poor and in the image of God?
- Humility, being poor, emptying ourselves: this is what our faith is all about.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on being humble of heart click here.
> July 2 2017: Father Frazier on Our Call to be Welcoming
- We are called to welcome everyone. To welcome means to offer to another person the presence
of the divine Christ.
- We are called to be a witness to the wonderful love of Christ who embraces all.
- Our faith calls us to stand up for people who are still oppressed. How are we being
faithful Christian citizens of our country today?
- Be a sign of the presence of Christ in our world today.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on our call to be welcoming click here.
> June 25 2017: Father Frazier on Our Prophetic Mission
- We are anointed as priest, prophet, and king. Our prophetic mission is part of our lives as Christian people today.
- “Do not be afraid.” We have to have the ultimate trust in God’s will.
- We are called to proclaim the Good News. We are called to the ministry of being prophets to our world.
- “Lord, make me an instrument of peace.”
To see Father Frazier’s homily on our prophetic mission click here.
> June 11 2017: Father Frazier on the Body and Blood of Christ
- The message from the reading of Deuteronomy is to remember what God did and don’t be afraid.
- God will be faithful. God does love us and will not leave us alone.
- We are called to acknowledge, celebrate, and live out the oneness with Christ with one another.
- St. Ignatius of Antioch said “Be what you receive.”
To see Father Frazier’s homily on the Body and Blood of Christ click here.
> June 11 2017: Father Frazier on Trinity Sunday
- The Trinity mystery is to be lived.
- God is a part of who we are.
- The image of God is love. This love is sacred. God is communion, relationship, love.
- We are called to respond to the act of love. We are called to a commitment to this relationship of God and ourselves.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on Trinity Sunday click here.
> June 4 2017: Father Frazier on Pentecost
- The image that Christ leaves with us about the Spirit is one of unity which reflects the peace of Christ.
- The power of the Spirit has been given to us; we have been empowered by the Spirit.
- Forgiveness and reconciliation are signs of the Spirit.
- We are called to be instruments and channels of peace. Say yes to the power of the Spirit.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on Pentecost click here.
> May 14, 2017: Father Leo on the Holy Spirit
- Live out your faith
- We have to trust in the Spirit
- Jesus does not leave us orphaned, He sends us the Holy Spirit
- When we are challenged we can rely upon the Spirit
To see Father Leo’s homily on the Holy Spirit click here.
> May 14, 2017: Bishop Higgins on Confirmation
- Jesus chooses us: we are called to be living stones
- Mary said yes and she changed the world
- If you always have the courage to say “Yes” to the Holy Spirit you will change the world
- Your yes and mine to the Holy Spirit builds the Kingdom of God
To see Bishop Higgins’ homily on Confirmation click here.
> May 14, 2017: Father Leo on the Way of Jesus
- “The Father is in me, and I am in the Father”
- Jesus did not come to teach us how to be divine, but how to be truly human.
- Jesus’ way is doable and can be realized in this world. Jesus’ way is the true way.
- If we have faith we can recognize the way: Jesus’ is the way.
To see Father Leo’s homily on the Way of Jesus click here.
> May 7 2017: Father Frazier on the Good Shepherd
- Four people who guided and helped people find Christ:
- Myrtiss Leslie
- Francesca McCarter
- Brian Bergkamp
- Blessed Father Stanley Rother
- “He leaves me by restful waters, he refreshes my soul.”
- The shepherd does not run away from his flock.
- We are all invited to be shepherds and imitators of Christ.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on the Good Shepherd click here.
> April 30 2017: Father Frazier on the Road to Emmaus
- “Were not our hearts burning inside us?”
- Jesus only asks of us to surrender and trust in His will.
- In scriptures and in the breaking of bread we meet the Risen Christ again.
- We are called to recommit ourselves to be the image of Christ to the world.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on the Road to Emmaus click here.
> April 23 2017: Deacon Greg on Doubting Thomas
- You are called to serve the Lord and his people.
- Jesus accepted His disciples as they were and where they were.
- Through His death and resurrection we have been transformed.
- Look forward to a new renewed sense of your Christian life.
To see Deacon Greg’s homily on Doubting Thomas click here.
> April 16 2017: Father Frazier on Easter Sunday
- The mystery of redemption and salvation is the great act of God’s love in the world.
- Our sacred duty is to proclaim the risen Christ.
- We are sent as messengers, we are called as witnesses.
- We can change the world by our lives and our words.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on Easter Sunday click here.
> April 15 2017: Father Frazier on the Easter Vigil
- For all times and for all people our life is changed forever.
- The risen Christ is the fulfillment of God’s plan for all of us.
- We have been called to be witnesses
- The joy of the Gospel is given to us. Let us celebrate with joy.
To see Father Frazier’s homily on the Easter Vigil click here.
> April 14 2017: Deacon Greg on Good Friday
- The Crucified Jesus Christ is the center and the summit of our faith.
- The cross is not the end but a glorious and wondrous beginning.
- Without the cross you and I would have no salvation.
- Give thanks to the cross that makes us whole.
To see Deacon Greg’s homily on Good Friday click here.
> April 13 2017: Father Leo on Holy Thursday
- Why is this night different from any other night? It is because it brings the Old Testament to a culmination, to an end, to a fulfillment.
- Jesus gives us the gift of Himself.
- Let us pray that we become more appreciative.
- Let us pray that our faith is deepened and bolstered.
To see Father Leo’s Holy Thursday homily click here.
> April 9 2017: Father Frazier on Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion
- The first reflection is on the person of Christ Himself, the second reflection is on ourselves.
- We know in Christ and in His death we have been changed.
- We are called because we believe in the new life of Christ.
- Change the life of the world to one of Christ.
To see Father Frazier’s Passion Sunday homily click here.
> April 1 2017: Father Frazier on Dying and Rising
- Are you better off this Lent than you were last Lent?
- Conversion is about change, conversion is about growing.
- Jesus reminds us that “Anyone who believes in me will never die.”
- Changing and Growing: Surrendering and dying so we too can rise with Him
To see Father Frazier’s homily on dying and rising click here.
> March 26, 2017: Father Donohoo on Jesus Curing the Blind Man
- The powers of the human soul are the power to believe and the power to love.
- The blind man was moving towards the light, the pharisees to darkness
- The process of conversion is ongoing
- Identify the darkness by virtue of the light
To see Father Donohoo’s homily on the curing of the blind man click here.
> March 19, 2017: Father Leo on the Samaritan Woman
- God made us to know Him, love Him, and to serve Him in this world and to be forever happy with Him in the next
- We see in the dialogue between the Samaritan woman and Jesus the growth of faith
- Jesus wants us to have the gift of everlasting life, the living water
- With Reconciliation we experience Christ’s love, compassion, mercy, and forgiveness
- By our words and actions we should show that we are His disciples
To see Father Leo’s homily on the Samaritan woman click here.
> March 12, 2017: Father Kevin on Transformation
- We have a life-long opportunity to learn.
- We can be transformed by our ongoing encounter with God.
- Be Joyful Disciples and Bring Happiness to Those That We Meet.
- Be faithful to what God asks, be transformed by Christ.
To see Father Kevin’s homily on transformation click here.
> March 5, 2017: Father Leo on Sin
- Lent is a time to take a spiritual inventory of our lives.
- The allurement of evil presents itself as good.
- Lent is a time to hear the will of God in our lives.
- Lent is a time to grow deeper in our spiritual lives.
To see Father Leo’s homily on sin click here.
> February 26, 2017: Father Donohoo on Mammon And Anxiety
- Mammon means worldliness. Jesus makes a connection between mammon and anxiety.
- Meaninglessness is not part of the life of a believer.
- The sacrament of the present moment is all that we have.
- The Lord is accompanying us along the way.
To see Father Donohoo’s homily on mammon and anxiety click here.
> February 19, 2017: Deacon Greg on Righteousness
- Loving our enemies means:
- Reaching out with gentleness, faith and mercy
- Working for justice
- Putting our Trust in God
- We should strive to be “second mile” people
To see Deacon Greg’s homily on righteousness click here.
> February 5, 2017: Deacon Greg on Salt and Light
- “Righteousness” means right relationships, especially our relationship with Jesus Christ
- Jesus is calling you and me to be righteous.
- Our actions must always remind people of Jesus Christ
- Jesus sends us out to transform the world.
To see Deacon Greg’s homily on salt and light click here.
> January 29, 2017: Father Donohoo on the Gospel of Matthew
- These are the parts of Matthew’s Gospel: the Sermon on the Mount, the Road to Christian life, preaching to the lost sheep of Israel, the Kingdom of God, teachings for the Christian community, and the end times.
- Father’s will is our guide
- “I am with you until the close of the age.”
- Our mission is to respond to what God has given us: God blesses those who respond.
To see Father Donohoo’s homily on the Gospel of Matthew click here.
> January 22, 2017: Father Leo on the Kingdom of God
- Jesus’ ministry started with preaching the Kingdom of His Father
- “Today the scriptures are fulfilled in your hearing.”
- The Kingdom of God is present today.
- We are the new disciples called to carry on Jesus’ mission.
To see Father Leo’s homily on the Kingdom of God click here.
> January 15, 2017: Father Leo on the Presence of Christ
- Hymns are prayers
- Jesus promised by God is now present
- We are participants in God’s kingdom
- If we truly believe we act differently, we bear witness to Christ
To see Father Leo’s homily on the Presence of Christ click here.
> December 24, 2016: Father Frazier's Christmas Eve Homily
- Christmas reminds us of the presence of Christ in our lives
- We should commit ourselves to the message of Christ
- We are called to carry the message of peace and goodwill to all of God’s people: there are people in our lives and our world today who need that message
To see Father Frazier’s Christmas Eve homily click here.
> October 30, 2016: Father Donohoo on the Gospel of Zaccheus
- The Son of Man has come to seek and to save what was lost
- In scripture the theme of salvation is always present
- This man is found: Zaccheus makes his way back home
- What’s important is the simple acceptance of God accepting us
To see Father Donohoo’s homily on Zaccheus click here.
> October 16, 2016: Deacon Greg on Prayer
- Prayer helps us to establish a personal relationship with God
- We should live in an atmosphere of prayer
- God is with us in everything that we do: He is there
- If we can open ourselves to God we will need no words: our lives will become a prayer, we will not grow weary
To see Deacon Greg’s homily on prayer, some prayer resources, and opportunities to pray at St. Joseph’s click here.