Your Sunday Sermon Notes

Did you hear a good point in your Sunday Sermon? Share it here.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. donato2 says:

    The good news: For the first time ever in my life, I heard in a homily a reflection on something that a Pope has said. The bad news: the gist of the reflection was that now is the time for ordination of women and for pro-lifers to stifle themselves.

  2. Curley says:

    Our priest quoted the “field hospital” line.

  3. Regulargrandma says:

    Our EF parish had a substitute priest who gave a sermon on confession. He advised us to always ask Jesus Christ for the grace of a good confession otherwise our preparatory time can be nothing but self-analysis. Excellent point.

  4. mamajen says:

    Our priest clarified what Pope Francis said in the Big Interview, emphasizing that he did not, and would not, change Church teachings.

  5. prayerisouronlyhope says:

    Our priest also talked about Confession, and why the Sacrament of Penance is so essential. He gave us good answers to those who say, “I confess directly to God, I don’t need to confess to a priest/man”.

  6. annieB says:

    We were advised to read the new testament not only to see what it might be saying to us today but also how it shows us who Jesus is. It made me reflect on the evening prayer scripture in a new way.

  7. bernadette says:

    I attended the weekly Tridentine Mass at my parish so the Gospel reading was about the paralytic man who was lowered down through the roof so Jesus could heal him. Jesus also forgave him of his sins.
    Our priest tied this in with the Sacrament of Penance and stressed that Catholics should confess once a month or even more often if necessary. His whole homily was an instruction on how to go to confession, the first I have ever heard from a priest in thirty years of being Catholic.

  8. lmgilbert says:

    At the Cathedral in Portland the rector also emphasized the “field hospital” line and said that it was a metaphor he himself would be using much more in the future.

  9. Supertradmum says:

    Our priest was trying to put out the fires created in the congregation owing to the Papal interview. The priest was stressing that the Pope does not disagree with Church doctrine, but that his presentation may be more difficult for us.

  10. Ben Yanke says:

    Your sermon was quire good, if I do say so myself, about how we are going to need to make sure we stand firm doctrinally, but also be sure to be involved in acts of charity, and not let them be seen as opposing each other, as the media often tries to do with Pope Francis’ words.

  11. acardnal says:

    Ben, see what you are missing? You should come every Sunday! ;-)

    Next Sunday, Sept. 29, there is a missa cantata at St. Norbert’s at 11 am. I’ll be there instead.

  12. FloridaJoan says:

    Our pastor was away visiting his ailing father. The visiting priest ( a Canon lawyer from the marriage tribunal) emphasized Prayer, prayer and more prayer ( for our Church, faith and our Holy Father Francis). He also emphasized our duty to receive the sacred Body and Blood of Christ worthily and our need to stand up and defend our Faith. It was a 1 and 1/2 hour Mass , but it felt like 30 minutes ( I could have listened to him for hours). Thank you Lord for your Holy and obedient Priests.

    pax et bonum

  13. Chris Garton-Zavesky says:

    As others have noted in the 18th Sunday after Pentecost, our over-arching theme was the need to go to Confession. He hammered at several points.

    1) It doesn’t matter whether you like the priest personally.
    2) It is important that an individual penitent provide enough information to explain the gravity of the sin. (He used the example: if a person said he had two bottles of water in his car when he had three, not only had he lied, but he may also have committed theft.) He encouraged us to — I think he said “drill into” the situation — to discover the source of the sin.

    Perhaps, Father Zuhlsdorf, you could explain the meaning of the question: “which is easier to say…..?” Is there a linguistic issue here, or does He mean rather, “which is easier for you to believe?”

  14. torch621 says:

    The homily at this Sunday’s OF Mass focused on the need for Christians to be “survivors”; as in “surviving” by persevering in our faith. That’s about all the details I can remember, not sure if that’s a good or a bad thing.

  15. incredulous says:

    Our Deacon read Luke 16 10-13. Then, our visiting Priest (teaching staff St. Thomas U) spoke of three threes. First he spoke of Power, Wealth and Fame. He posited that anybody who has power, wealth and/or fame probably got them through lying and cheating. The second trio was Faith, Hope and Love. The last was Poverty, Chastity and Obedience.

    Overall, he did a very nice job of putting forth that love of God is more important than all else and that a desire for earthly things leads to sin and a serving of mammon over God.

    I contemplated that I have never really desired to be wealthy even though I have felt at times I’ve underachieved, never really wanted power, but the desire for fame has led to serious sin. I reflected that Satan is always looking to pry your spiritual well being apart. The more educated you are of your own weaknesses, mainly through proper catechesis and knowledge of scripture the more you can identify when Satan has breached your firewall.

    I’m glad that I attended mass today. I prayed beforehand that the mass and the sermon would have personal importance to me and I was blessed.

  16. joan ellen says:

    Fr. said he doesn’t usually talk about the Pope but that he was going to do so. The main point I came away with was that he suggested that Pope Francis is using a different strategy to lead us. Fr. also made it a point to say that the Holy Father is not saying anything that is not consistent with Catholic doctrine and dogma.

  17. Charivari Rob says:

    Probably the best and most timely treatment of the Gospel passage of the squandering steward I have ever heard.

    Just as I had read, heard, and read along with the passage and was left feeling uncommonly dense about it, Father said it clearly – If only the children of light gave as much thought to (and showed as much cunning about) their future situation as this steward. We’ll prepare, document, scheme, etc… to make ready to stand before the IRS, but when it comes to the state of our souls…

  18. zag4christ says:

    We had the rector at the nearby seminary (Bishop White Seminary) celebrate Holy Mass and give today’s homily. He began by telling us that after 9 years as a diocesan pastor, our Bishop Cupich has recently appointed him as the rector of the seminary. He pointed out that 3 of the current 16 seminarians had come with him today. He then asked all of us to pray for him and for them. He told us that the seminary would welcome us to visit for worship and to encourage and support the seminarians during their discernment process.
    He then mentioned Pope Francis’s interview, and specifically spoke to the “field hospital” analogy , and concentrated on our need as Church to heal wounds.
    He addressed today’s Gospel, from Luke 16:1-13 (which I have a hard time understanding) saying that the master commended the dishonest steward for his planning ahead, not for his dishonesty, and that we should always live as to plan to be ready for heaven, not so much focused on the things of this world, because our goal is life now and forever in Christ.
    He ended by again requesting prayer for he and the seminarians.
    Peace and God Bless

  19. Arele says:

    Our pastor took time out from his homily to talk about the Pope’s interview. He said we shouldn’t get our news from the media. He said the Pope changed the emphasis, not the teachings of the church, and pointed out that the very next day the Pope talked at length against abortion.

    A large portion of the announcements at the end of mass was about 40 Days for Life. I felt comforted by that.

  20. Arele says:

    PS I should mention that at the parish where I go to daily mass, on Friday the priest came with a full copy of the Pope’s interview, waved it around and said we shouldn’t listen to the media, and offered a class on the Pope’s interview. He said anyone could come – the only requirement was that you had to read the entire interview (not the media version) and he said he had made it available on his blog.

    I’m going to his class!

  21. Torpedo1 says:

    I went to the Cathedral in St. Paul tonight. First of all, I’m always struck how the space of this gorgeous church allows for such a beautiful Mass… Anyway, Father talked about prudence, and how the steward was prudent, in using right reason applied in the right moment, as he put it. He also spoke of the Pope’s interview and also used the field hospital analogy. He said he planned on using that analogy and reflecting on it a lot in the future. He also stressed the need for going to Confession and how beautiful the sacrament was. I’d like to try, if I can, to quote him here, so here goes.
    “6 days a week that confessional light is on and we are rarely, rarely waiting for people to show up for Confession. In fact it’s just the opposite. Those lines fill up. I’m so glad we posted the schedule up so you all know when confession times are, and I wouldn’t change it for all the world.”
    It’s probably paraphrased, but I couldn’t help writing it down. I love this priest and I’m so glad he’s still nearby so I can go to hear him at Mass when ever I like. It was a great Mass for me and God is good.
    God bless you, all of you wonderful and holy priests! We love you, and can’t do it without you.

  22. racjax says:

    Unfortunately the Franciscan who used to have the earring and won’t kiss the altar or genuflect said the Mass today. He was beside himself with giddiness over “Jorge” (his word) and how wonderful he is and how wonderful everything is now. Over and over about “this Pope cares about the poor.” No comment on the Gospel topic nor did he ever mention the names God or Jesus. And of course the prayers were that employers treat all their employees fairly, etc.

    My husband said afterwards that he had fully expected me to stand up and leave.

  23. PhilipNeri says:

    You become what you love most. . .so make sure you are loving/serving God and not Mammon!

    Fr. Philip Neri, OP

  24. Littlemore says:

    At Sunday Mass yesterday, there was a mission appeal from a Comboni Sister, so we didn’t have a sermon per se. I have often wondered whether the appeal should be at the end of Mass so leaving the time for the sermon exactly that.
    At Mass this morning, the Parish Priest gave as he does often a mini sermon regarding the feast of St. Pio and tied this to GOING to CONFESSION saying that both Padre Pio & Cure of Ars both saints of the Church spent many hours in the confessional, he said as a reminder that we should not neglect the sacrament. People go to Holy Communion not really thinking about what they are doing but we need to be prepared properly & that includes confession

  25. Littlemore says:

    What I logged on to say as well as the previous post, was at Confession on Saturday we spoke about Pope Francis and the priest said almost word for word
    ” Fr. also made it a point to say that the Holy Father is not saying anything that is not consistent with Catholic doctrine and dogma.” As posted by Joan Ellen @ 22/09/13 20.01hrs
    I know this was not Sunday Sermon but I just wanted to say that we are blessed to have good and holy Priests .

  26. The Masked Chicken says:

    “Perhaps, Father Zuhlsdorf, you could explain the meaning of the question: “which is easier to say…..?””

    I am not Fr. Z., merely a lowly fowl, but the reason for the use of the word, “say,” is that the two statements: “Your sins are forgiven,” and, “Pick up your mat and go home,” are both declarative statements of some fact that God commands or wills to happen. God wills the man’s sins to be forgiven and says so, out loud for the benefit of the crowd and the man to hear; God wills the man to walk and likewise speaks his will. One cannot see the forgiveness of sins, so cannot verify that the command was a proper act of someone claiming to be God, but one can see the man picking up his mat. This is an instance of Divine implication: God does visible miracles so that you might believe the invisible ones, since the same God does them, both.

    It is important that the will of God be manifested in words for three reasons: 1) it is fitting for Jesus as man to articulate his will as God, showing the incarnation, 2) Jesus is the Divine Word and his primary role is to speak things into existence, 3) it foreshadows the role of the priest in forgiving sins, since one cannot see either the forgiveness or that the priest actsin persona Christi, but by virtue of this Gospel scene, one is given to know that both are possible in Christ.

    The really interesting observation is that Jesus never answers his question: “Which is easier to say…” Well, which is easier to say: “Your sins are forgiven,” or, “Pick up your mat and go home?” It is easier to say, “Pick up your mat…,” because this command affects only material nature, but the forgiveness of sins affects spiritual nature. In the forgiveness of sins, God affects the entire universe and most specifically, the body of Christ. Imagine showing up for an awards banquet with a purple nose (this is not a clown banquet!). Now, the arms are not purple, but, nevertheless, they share in the embarrassment along with the nose. When you sin, you affect not only yourself, but the whole Church. The Church is weakened, today, in part, because of the unconfessed sins of its members, some of whom, might be receiving communion unworthily. Just as rubbing the purple off of your nose before you enter the banquet gives you a measure of peace, so too does it give peace to your arms and legs. There may be some poor person, right now, in a moment of decision about committing some sin and by your act of going to confession, in strengthening the Body of Christ, you give them the strength to turn away from their sin. We are that connected in the Body of Christ.

    Confession is a much under-appreciated sacrament. All sacraments have a community aspect and this aspect of confession is scarcely mentioned. One reason, perhaps, that Jesus performed his miracle of forgiveness in public is to demonstrate the positive qualities of both the faith of the crowd (we need people to pray for us, especially when we are in sin) and the the effects it had on the crowd (an increase in faith). Also, in restoring the man’s ability to walk, he gave him back to the community as a healthy member who could live and work. By forgiving sins, Jesus does the same, spiritually. There are two communal aspects of confession: one that affects the relationship of the man to the Christian community (strengthening it by mitigating the weakening effects of sin) and one that affects the relationship of the Christian community to the man (strengthening him to be more fully integrated into the community).

    Hope that helps.

    Go to confession.

    The Chicken

  27. TimG says:

    Our priest addressed Pope Francis’ comments and the MSM spin head on….it was another solid homily by a good man, thank you Lord for these holy priests!

  28. St Donatus says:

    Had a great sermon about our ‘Opra society’. Father (at our FSSP parish) made the point that in the ‘Opra society’, everyone has an excuse for why they do wrong. We are all supposed to be HURT. Our childhood was bad, my parent were divorced, I was a middle child, my mother didn’t like me, my older brother was a bully, I got picked on in school, etc. As adults we also are HURT, my husband or wife doesn’t understand me, I hate my job, I have bad health, I get stressed easily, etc. We use the ‘HURT’ as an excuse to sin because we are hurt and weak. That isn’t the way the law works (usually) and sin doesn’t work that way either. He went on to say that, yes there are those with mental issues that need treatment but that still doesn’t excuse the sin. Some of us need to work harder than others to overcome sin. Through the Graces of the sacraments, we can get the help we need to overcome these shortcomings, but we need to work hard at it too. We can’t just write it off as our ‘weakness’, ‘genetics’, our ‘hurt, etc.

  29. M.D. says:

    (What I heard notable)

    The priest noted how (the second reading) St Paul made the recommendation on not only praying for thanksgiving and our petitions but also for “for all political leaders in authority.” He questioned, how could we do that? How could we pray for some we can’t stand to even hear their names? Some who only anger us? He then focused on the vital point that God changes hearts. Reminding us God DOES act in the world.

    A reflection was offered on how we can say or do things and not always effect many people. But when a person in political power says or does something — it can have great consequence for many people. So he tied in the grave duty and great impact of politicians acts….with the grave duty and great impact of prayers. How we have a responsibility we often find unsettling and may ignore.

  30. iPadre says:

    Reflecting on 1 Tim. and the Gospel. We are stewards of the Catholic Faith and must lead all people into Her embrace through prayer, example and actively engaging our world.

  31. MarkG says:

    This was funny. Our new priest (his first Sunday) started out by saying today’s homily is going to be about Confession. He then said I have a special Penance for everyone. I added a “Pastor’s Message” section to the bulletin and your special Penance is to read it.

  32. VexillaRegis says:

    Thanks, dear Chicken! I suddenly had this vision of a masked chicken entering the confessional of a surprized priest. “Tweet, tweet, chiiiirp, cock-a doodle-doooo!” “- Hmm, that’s a fou/wl sin, indeed!”

  33. Bea says:

    I didn’t ask the question, but I, too, profited from it. thanks, Masked Chicken: good explanation and meditation.

  34. MikeM says:

    For some reason, the priest as Mass yesterday mentioned that he was a bit unsure of his homily and his understanding of the day’s Gospel… and he looked it. (I’m not being critical, by the way. That sometimes “even the Priest” is unsure that he’s grasped the full depth of a passage’s meaning was probably a worthwhile enough message for a homily on its own). He, however, zeroed in on the idea of the dishonest steward’s cleverness and focused on how we all (and the people in those pews, perhaps, even more than average) think of ourselves as rather clever and capable and we put a lot of time into planning our affairs in this world… That this can be good or bad, depending on what we’re being clever about (developing an intelligent career plan to be productive and provide for our families is often good, scheming to get ourselves out of trouble is often bad)… but that we’re far less likely to dedicate the time to plan, or even develop the “intelligence” to plan, our spiritual lives. We can wind up seemingly having it all together in our external worldly affairs while we sit in horrified inaction as we spiritually fall to pieces. He encouraged us to plan ahead and develop ourselves spiritually and to realize that people who have their affairs of this world in seemingly perfect order might still be going off the rails spiritually, and that we should help them and pray for them.

  35. q7swallows says:

    We had a substitute priest who probably offered his (first?) public EF and it was GLORIOUS!!! Father’s life WAS the homily (for me). Father himself is a former and still recovering paralytic [Gospel was the healing of the paralytic carried to Jesus by friends]. An older priest, he said he was given EF materials and videos when he was still in the hospital, and so his interest was kindled there. And he humbly apologized for any mistakes he might make because he’s still a learner.

    I knew before he came that he still endures quite a bit of pain from this illness so during Mass, I was personally struck by the responsibility to pick up and continue carrying this priest in prayer unto his full recovery/death. So today I hand wrote and mailed the nicest thank you note I could write and thanked him for his priesthood and his sacrifices, complimented him specifically on things that moved me about his very reverential manner—especially for manfully offering the EF without having to be asked by us—and promised to pray for him by name in our daily family rosary, etc. as an ongoing spiritual bouquet. Then I invited him to dinner at our house.

    I sure hope he comes. Nevertheless, Deo Gratias!

    The kids write their notes tomorrow . . . .

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