Your Sunday Sermon Notes

Was there a good point made during the sermon you heard at your Mass of Obligation for this Sunday, Epiphany?

Let us know what it was!

For my part, I spoke about the various lights and “stars” which guide us in life.  Some of these leader stars – stellae duces – are exterior and  some interior.  The exterior guides can be blessings received which can comfort and can also be challenges, which correct and get us back onto the correct path.  We also have the help of authority, of the Church, of loved ones, of older people around us.  We have interior stars in the promptings of the conscience and other inspirations.  Some are dramatic, most are quite.  We need quiet to hear them.   Whenever we detect guiding stars we should obey them promptly, bravely, and with perseverance.  The Wise Men followed God’s will in following the star.  They also followed God’s will when they were told to return home “by another road”.

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  1. SAHMmy says:

    The message of the homily was that we need to “search the skies in the eyes of everyone around us for Christ” like the Magi searched for Christ in the skies via the Star of Bethlehem. My initial reaction to this message was, Meh, until I realized that I do a real lousy, LOUSY job of looking for Christ in others. I’ve been counseled to do this very thing in Confession years ago, and I still can’t quite manage it:( Any time a homily shakes me out of my smugness, it’s a good homily imo.

    How do I find Christ in people with worldviews 180 degrees from mine? These are people who mock my Belief and work toward evil ends as I see it. How do I find Him in them? *sigh*

  2. I have no good homily points to share, but since you mention stellae duces, I want to publicly give thanks for one I received this year in answer to prayer. I don’t want to say what it is exactly, but I will say that the giving of this guiding star proves God’s immense pity and condescension in stooping to even the purblind and the just plain dumb, to help them see what has been right in front of their face all along.

  3. 7frati says:

    Father gave a sermon about the historical astrological events that took place in June of 2 BC regarding the circular movement of Jupiter around the star regulus (king planet around king star) and how regulus is the brightest star if the constellation Leo (the lion). He connected the Lion to Judas, the family in which the Messiah was to be born. He ended with a line from Revelation about how Jesus tells the apostles to look for “signs in the sky” to know when he will come again and how because of this we should have no doubt that there were also signs in the sky to announce his first coming.

  4. PostCatholic says:

    That sounds like a sermon I’d enjoy hearing, and I like the way you exemplified your theme. Do you post/podcast your sermons? (I know that’s unusual in Catholicism but quite common in other faiths.)

  5. LeeGilbert says:

    Father asked us to consider for a moment what was the best gift we could give to Jesus. Would it not be our very selves? Would that not be the gift He would appreciate most? And if we were going to give ourselves to Jesus, should it not be the very best version of ourselves that we could manage?

    Yet, when we look at ourselves we find many things that would spoil the gift, and for which the grace of God and our own efforts are necessary to repair.

    He suggested that if we decided to change, that we do it in smart way. ( This priest is a spiritual director at the seminary, so I was all ears). He gave us the acronym SMART as a tool.
    1. First of all S for Specific. It is not enough to say we are going to be better, what specifically needs to change? What is our worst flaw? Let us work on that one thing.
    2. Secondly, M for measurable. We should be able to say at the end of the day how many times we have fallen, or how many temptations overcome, so that one day we can say there was Zero problem in that area.
    3. Thirdly, it should be attainable. If it is specific enough, it will be achievable.
    4. Fourthly, it should be realistic.
    5. Fifthly, it should be timely. It should begin at a specific time, namely now.

    Full disclosure, I just now typed in this acronym on Google to recover an element that I was unsure of, and discovered that this acronym pops up in many place on the internet, for example under time-management. No matter, in a Catholic context it is very useful and Father did indicate that this is something to be undertaken with the help of prayer and grace. Further, he suggested the particular examen at the end of the day as a way of measuring how well we are doing from day to day. So this is worldly wisdom that has been baptized, as have we all.

    One other thing, this sermon was very memorable since he gave us the very mnemonic with which to remember it.

  6. DelRayVA says:

    You must ask yourself, do you want a king? If you don’t want a king, then you don’t want Jesus.

  7. I asked and answered the question, what does it mean to be a faithful Christian. My answer was that a Christian is another Christ, with emphasis on who we ARE and what we BECOME: what we do matters, but be careful about only focusing on the “dos” and “donts” because it is gatting harder to be faithul, and people who don’t know WHY they do or don’t do certainthings will not likely embrace hard choices without knowing why.

    Sin likewise is more that something we do; it ultimately is about who are, and what we are becoming. If I lie, at some point I become a liar. Sneak peeks at porn lead to the porn habit owning me. Who and what do I want to BE? I tied it to St. Athanasius’ famous statement: “God became man so that men could become God,” which was the theme of my Christmas homily. I wanted to reinforce that lesson, because I believe that to be a startling and challenging idea, but we need to be startled awake to our true calling and destiny.

  8. JulieHoward says:

    Our priest called us to “look up high” like the Magi, namely a call to holiness, to imitate our Lord Jesus Christ in our daily life. It is a calling to die to self. That our goal is to to be another Christ on earth. The Magi came to bring the best they had, we must do likewise. We need to turn our entire self to God, think less of ourselves and more of God by putting him first. We show this by how we treat our brothers and sisters. We should become the servant of all, and become the least.

    Thank you for sharing your notes. Wish I had been able to attend the Mass for the Vigil of Epiphany with the Epiphany water blessing. Hoping to get my hands on some of that Holy Water!

  9. We heard the Noveritis chanted, then read in English, and then had a sermon on the Epiphany as the moment when the Christ child reached beyond the Jewish people to reveal Himself to the Gentiles. Fr finished up by pointing out that Christ’s abiding presence first revealed to us at the Epiphany is perpetuated in the Blessed Sacrament, which we ought to revere and visit often. (Genuflection was recommended in this regard.) Edifying stuff.

  10. Grant M says:

    EF Mass. I heard the noveritis chanted for the first time in my life. The sermon was in a language which is not my first, but as far as I could understand, the preacher was expanding on the comments printed on the front cover of the bulletin: the Magi offered incense, myrrh and gold. We should offer God the incense of constant prayer, the myrrh of penance, sacrifice, fasting and abstinence as well as the gold of wise conduct.

  11. scholastica says:

    I simply think that He created them and loves them infinitely regardless of their worldview or lifestyle. Therefore, I see Christ in them because He formed them in the womb. I love them because He loves them and desires their salvation ( and mine).

  12. Mallu Jack says:

    The difference between Herod and the Magi: The former wanted Jesus dead while the latter found and worshipped him . This difference stems from the way they viewed Jesus – Herod saw a threat while the Magi saw fulfillment. How do we view him? This affects our almsgiving (loss of our money vs the chance to help) and prayer (boredom vs devotion).

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