Your Sunday Sermon Notes

What were the good points you heard in the sermon you heard as you fulfilled your Sunday obligation?

Share them.

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  1. Gratias says:

    First EF mass in decades at St. Anthony’s church in El Segundo, Southern California. Authorized by Archbishop Jose Gómez to be offered every second Sunday of the month at 1:30 pm. We had 150-200 faithful, and a great Gregorian choir from Una Voce Los Angeles that came to help get this initiative started. Wonderful High Mass by Los Angeles Diocesan priest Fr. Michael Carcerano, normally chaplain of the Camarillo 10 am mass, he offered both today. Of the sermon I do not remember much: the Holy Spirt strengthened the backbone of the apostles that had been mostly passive until now, with Peter even denying Christ. Now they could preach and even speak many languages. Brick by brick.

  2. Mike says:

    EF: The cliché “spiritual but not religious” misses the point that the Holy Spirit empowered the apostles to make disciples of all nations through the Church and Her sacraments — of which that of Penance “renews the face of the earth,” time and again, in each of us.

  3. APX says:

    St. John the Evangelist Anglican Use Ordinariate in Calgary.

    There’s no point in us asking for the gifts of the holy spirit unless we first empty ourselves of everything contrary to them, or something along those lines.

  4. Colette says:

    No good points, absolutely none! I was visiting my parents in Ohio. They are in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. The priest let his Deacon give the homily and do just about everything else. I can’t remember one memorable word. There was no incense, no Benedictine arrangement on the altar, no reverence whatsoever. My parents are older and they live in a small town. They have no options. My Dad (almost 80 years old) gets so frustrated by it, but doesn’t really know what to say to the priest. Sorry, I veered off course from the question!

  5. Elizabeth D says:

    Our state just had same sex “marriage” imposed by judicial fiat so the Pentecost sermons were also about that at my parish.

    Fr Z, 7am: Discussed the Gifts of the Holy Spirit which we have through Confirmation, with special stress on Counsel and Fortitude, which we need very much in our day. People are disregarding the natural moral law, by sick artificial meddling in the process wherein God gives a new human soul, and by twisting of what marriage is, people are trying to take the place of God. Our situation now is very serious and we must be people of fortitude in the truth.

    Bishop Morlino, 11am: This was Confirmation day for the young people of the diocese, who are mostly from families that normally attend Spanish language Mass, so the first reading and Gospel were in Spanish etc. The Holy Spirit will rush onto the souls of the young people, giving strength to bear witness to the Faith. The bishop said that Babel confused the language of people, and then Pentecost healed that, it was as if everyone heard and understood a single language. Words have meaning, but in the new Babel their meaning is lost or twisted, he spoke of “same sex unions” emphasizing that he did not say marriage because marriage is one man and one woman.

    Cathedral Rector, 5pm: Jesus’ call is not “come follow me, and we’ll change the world” rather it’s a call to know Jesus personally (the person of Jesus is the goal) and be His disciple, Jesus’ disciples then went on to change the world anyway through following Jesus, but it was not through “changing the world” being the basic aim. With same sex “marriage” our culture is going wrong, “but that’s all right” because we will keep following Jesus and be a light in the darkness. We should be sad and pity those who believe in SSM, not be angry or upset. Society had already gone far wrong by rejecting the indissolubility of marriage and accepting easy divorce, people need to understand well that marriage is for life in openness to children. It was kind of a call to “relax” rather than the call to fortitude, bearing witness to the truth and defending the Faith that the other two homilies made. This left me perplexed. I feel that it is more adequate to combine this message with the message of the other ones.

  6. Kate says:

    Good point: First time attending the beautiful cathedral in Denver.

    The deacon sang the gospel. He did this in the same tone/approach of the “Alleluia”. I’ve never experienced this before.

    Similar to Colette’s experience, the deacon did pretty much everything.

    Two questions:
    Is singing/chanting the gospel acceptable?
    Do deacons receive the same grace as priest (to touch the hearts and minds of others when they preach the gospel) when they are ordained?

  7. In my homily, I began with the Paschal Candle, and recalled the Easter Vigil, both the ritual and the prayers, keying in on the image of a flame divided yet undimmed. As I had made an effort, all through the Easter Season (and particularly the Octave) to keep the candle burning, by Pentecost, it was more than half gone. I pointed to this to say: we are, like the candle, supposed to burn, to be “used up,” rather than be preserved, pristine and pretty. Christ is the only light; who brings that light? Why did he pour the Fire of God into us, for what purpose?

    FWIW, one reason I took this approach is the variation in readings; there are totally different readings on the Vigil and the Day, and for the one preparing the homily, this can be a challenge. So I did what the rubrics clearly allow (despite what anyone says to the contrary — they are mistaken!): to focus more on the feast, or the season, or the liturgy itself. Of course, there were obvious tie-ins to the readings at all Masses, which I made as I could.

    At the later-morning Mass, we had a baptism during Mass; not my preference, but circumstances made it preferable. And of course, there are great tie-ins there.

    After each Mass, I presented a talk on the artwork in the church. I’d been doing some research on the paintings. Many people, I realized (including me at the beginning), didn’t fully get what the artist had intended. It was fun for me to discover what I think was his purpose, and to share that. So my homily was a bit shorter as a result.

    I very much wanted to use incense, but alas, we didn’t! We have very few servers in our parish, and when the one server you have shows up just 4 minutes before Mass…Were I staying here, I’d have addressed that; as it is, my successor will, I hope.

    So, hint, hint: if you don’t see many servers at the altar, perhaps you would like to step up? You’re never too old to serve at the altar, and I can’t imagine any priest not being happy to have more adult servers. A lot of good things don’t happen in Holy Mass because the priest is too busy, too distracted, too rushed, or too tired (I hadn’t slept well the night before) to deal with it — like incense. (It’s not just lighting it; if you don’t use it ALL-the-time-all-the-time, you have servers who need to be taught, all over again, how to do it right before Mass. Hence the problem of the server just getting vested 4 minutes before.) I’m hopeful about my new parish; my predecessor used it–a lot.

  8. SegoLily says:

    Very bland, by the deacon. We are to accept the peace of Christ, be a people of peace. This was said in about 14 different mundane ways, but there was no call to conversion, no mention of baptizing in the name of Christ to confer His peace, etc. We are to be peaceful, loving, people who give example, but he provided no example (this was said in a soft, monotone, ad nauseam). There was nothing to ponder, nothing to spark the fervor that was felt at Pentecost. He did say we could be a people of peace by working against abortion and of course, capitol punishment, but said if we don’t want to do that we can still be a people of peace (yes, opting out of anything is okay). He dared not speak a word about SS “marriage”, God-forbid. There is never a word spoken in a Utah Catholic Church about that taboo topic, in fact SSM has been promoted in a local parish by the pastor, but there is plenty about the evil of lack of immigration reform. If the lukewarm are going to be spit out, I shudder to think about the clerics in this diocese.

  9. Gregg the Obscure says:

    OF: Focused on the reading from I Corinthians. We are each a part of the body of Christ and, just as we rely on others for things we can’t do for ourselves, the whole body relies on us doing our part, with the help of the Holy Spirit.

  10. raininnewark says:

    Gratias – thanks for mentioning the EF Mass in El Segundo. I live in Sherman Oaks so it’s nice to have an option closer than Wilmington.

  11. oblomov says:

    We are called like the Apostles in the upper room to bring Christ to those who don’t know him yet.

  12. JSII says:

    Only by the power of the Holy Spirit were the apostles able to preach about Christ. After knowing The Lord had been crucified they were scared about what might happen to them, however the Holy Spirit gave them the power to preach the Gospel and “nobody dies for a fairy tale. “

  13. frahobbit says:

    I heard the priest say “…we shouldn’t think their change was instantaneous, it was probably a gradual change…” Then he continued with something like This kind of change is fostered by us when we help each other to overcome fears and anxieties. This can be done by withholding criticism and using encouraging words. I am paraphrasing because I stopped listening after “gradual change”, realizing I was about to hear pop psychology think-speak. I thought the beliefs about there having been an instantaneous change was that it was part of the sign that it was not of human origin, but divine i.e. a miracle?

  14. Supertradmum says:

    Very good sermon, although in Spanish, as I went to the Latino Mass for a good reason. The priest said that although Jesus Christ sent us the Holy Spirit, which is like the breath of life in us, we cannot keep the Holy Spirit in our souls as if in a closed bag. We must send the Spirit out of us by our good works and good prayers.

  15. Gail F says:

    Very bland music but a GREAT homily although, as I’ve had a long day, I remember very little of it now except that he Holy Spirit will transform us if we let Him, but we have to recognize Him first — otherwise He is always with us but we never notice, like something you put in your pocket but forget is there (there was a story to go with that). The Holy Spirit is always in your heart but it’s possible to forget about Him and not pay attention, It made me want to come home and get my Pneumatology textbook out — which I did. This priest used to be a professor.

  16. James Joseph says:

    It was a homily from a monsignor at the first holy Mass of a newly ordained priest. I am not sure if this is good or bad. I am inclined to think bad because it reminds of the saying “Obedience is more important than sacrifice,” which is sometimes brought against Catholics, in general. I am literally confused about it. It came from a personal friend of yours Fr. Z. so I am sure it can be that off-base.

    Thundering loudly, “Obedience is more important than being right.”

  17. timfout says:

    At the Sunday EF Mass, our transitional deacon in residence for the summer gave a good sermon. He focused on the Sequence specifically the first four line as invocations (Veni) and the last four lines as petitions (Da). It is a notable parallel. He even preached wearing his biretta dutifully removing it at any mention of any person of the Holy Trinity. Of course, his main focus was on the reality of the Holy Ghost. (And he did say Holy Ghost!)

  18. Will Elliott says:

    We had the pleasure of having The (Wonderfully) Reverend John Hunwicke visit Our Lady of the Atonement here in San Antonio for the week, serving as the keynote speaker for the Atonement Academy’s 12th and 8th Grade graduations and as the guest preacher for the Masses on Pentecost Sunday. He presided over the sunday evening Mass (Ordinary Form in Latin), the homily for which explored the meaning of the word “Spiritual.” Although it isn’t the text of that particular homily, I share the Pentacost homily Father Hunwicke posted to his blog.

  19. BigRed says:

    Our pastor emphasized the gifts of the Holy Spirit especially: Fear of the Lord. The Apostles would go forth fearlessly to preach to the world because they would not/could not fear anything on this earth more than they feared (were in awe of) God. I apologize that my paraphrase will miss pastor’s subtle argument.

  20. JacobWall says:

    In addition to a wonderful sermon on the gifts of the Holy Spirit, our priest took the first few minutes to remind everyone present that we have an obligation to attend Mass on Sundays; he explained the obligation very nicely comparing it to a chain; if you miss one Sunday, you’ve broken the chain of your communion with the Church – all it takes is one link to break, and the chain no longer works. He continued to remind everyone that if they have missed a Sunday, they are NOT to receive communion until they’ve gone to confession. (He’s always in the confessional before Mass, but I think my wife and I are the only ones who go.)

    He especially emphasized that Pentacost is the second most important Feast of the Church.

    Attendance was VERY low; Canadian Catholics seem to be under the impression that summer vacations applies to Mass and major feast days as well – a very frustrating point for me since I moved back 3 years ago. After Mass I mentioned that it was too bad that the people who needed to hear that message weren’t there. He pointed out that there were still plenty of people there who only showed up once in a blue moon, and he was right. (One of them is a lector, who shows up only on the days he’s supposed to read.) So, I hope the message was heard. Very encouraging to hear this said from the pulpit!

  21. Will Elliott says:

    Father Hunwicke’s actual homily from Sunday evening is now online:

  22. Skeinster says:

    Fr. pointed out that the Jews converted by Peter and the apostles in Acts 1 were devout pilgrims who had come to Jerusalem for religious purposes- yet they still needed to enter the Church to be saved, since it had become the vessel of salvation.
    Practical implications:
    1) if you’re Catholic, don’t leave, since you can’t otherwise be saved.
    2) We are already in the Kingdom of God, so act like it!
    3) God is with us if we are in a state of grace, we are temples of the Holy Spirit
    4) Fear nothing except sin- the only thing that can separate us from God

  23. ml1948 says:

    A little late to the game, but here goes:
    We were visiting our daughter and son-in-law (and 1-year-old grandson) in Portland, OR, and went to mass at Our Lady of Sorrows parish in the SE sector. The priest gave a sermon in which he used two words I have not heard in any sermon in our home diocese (Rochester, NY) in at least 40 years: “sin” and “penance.” Not a Jonathon Edwards “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” jeremiad, but a simple reflection on the facts that (a) evil in the world is the result of sin, (b) we’re all sinners who contribute in some way to that evil, but (c) through confession, penance, and the Grace of God we can be forgiven and strengthened in our struggle against sin.

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