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15th Sunday of Year B

Fr. Michael Chua

“Christians are called to travel lightly, whilst carrying the heavy weight of being effective witnesses of the good news of salvation,” writes Fr. Chua. “Only then, can the Kingdom of God be seen not only as the content of their message but in the testimony of  their lives.”

TRAVEL LIGHTLY

KUALA LUMPUR | 2018

It’s really ironic how some of the things which you enjoy most of all gets matched up with the things you least enjoy.  An obvious example is travelling. I love travelling. Who doesn’t? However, an important prelude to travelling is knowing how to pack your luggage. Here, I must confess I fail miserably. Packing my luggage is one of the things I hate most in life, which is another way of saying that I am disorganised. I know that many of you can appreciate the nightmare of trying to fit two weeks of clothing into a bag which can only accommodate less than a week, lugging around heavy luggage, waiting in long baggage claim lines, fretting over whether you would have to pay additional charges for overweight luggage.

I must have overlooked the wisdom of that celebrated author of the Little Prince, Antoine De St Exupery, “He who would travel happily must travel light.” In recent years, I have begun to learn the important lesson of travelling lightly. I’m a slow learner when it comes to this. After having over-packed for many trips, which includes lots of overnight stops in various hotels and accommodations, and suffering the misery of lugging around a heavy suitcase, I’ve finally learnt the lesson of keeping it simple.  Well, at least some times.

Click on title to read entire homily.

Related Homilies

We Are Meant to Soar (2021)
We Were Not Meant to “Fit In (2018)
Accommodation, Hostility, or Counter-Cultural (2012)

Fr. VINCENT HAWKSWELL

TRUST GOD, HE KNOWS WHAT HE’S DOING

B.C. CATHOLIC | 2021

“What’s the point of it all?” someone asked me at a funeral.

The deceased was a dearly beloved wife whose husband of 54 years was now alone. “She was born, she fell in love, she married the man she loved, they had a family, and they never stopped loving each other. Now she’s gone, and anyone can see he won’t last long without her. What’s it all for?”

This Sunday’s Second Reading gives the answer. God “destined us for adoption to sonship as his own through Jesus Christ, according to the good pleasure of his will.”

Moreover, “with all wisdom and insight God has made known to us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure that he set forth in Christ, as a plan for the fullness of time, to gather up all things in Christ, things in heaven and things on earth.”

Click on title to read entire homily.
Fr. Austin Fleming

EIGHT CONTEMPORARY PROPHETIC STATEMENTS

A CONCORD PASTOR COMMENTS | 2015

One prophet in today’s scriptures, Amos, got run out of town. And in the gospel, Jesus instructs his followers on what to do if they find themselves about to be booted  from a place where their message a call to repentance, is rejected and not welcomed. They’re to “shake the dust off their feet.” That’s an ancient equivalent of saying,  “I wash my hands of this. I’ve done all I can and now I’m moving on. I’m not even taking the dust of your streets with me.”

Like the prophets in Israel, these pairs of disciples missioned by Jesus were sent to preach repentance, to preach a change of heart. That’s not a message everyone wants to hear. Most folks don’t want to be told by someone else:

 “Hey!  You need a change of heart!”

And, keep in mind that  prophets don’t so much predict the future as much as they comment on and critique the present moment-reminding their listeners of what the Lord has spoken to them and what the Lord expects of them. My overall mission as a preacher is to speak prophetically, that is, to call of us to repentance.

So, I’ve been thinking about some prophetic words I might preach in a homily and I’ve come up with 8  contemporary prophetic statements calling us to repentance – and here they are…

Click on title to read entire homily.

Related Homilies

A Thorn in the Flesh… (2015)
On Becoming a Summertime Prophet (2009)

Fr. Evans K Chama, M.Afr

REMAINING FOCUSED IN LIFE AND MISSION

SINGLE HUMANITY | 2018

The readings for this Sunday talk about the sending out on mission; Amos is sent to Bethel as prophet, and the disciples are sent to announce the reign of God. What nourishment do these readings bring to our lives?

Look at the instructions that Jesus gives as his disciples set out on the mission! He tells them to carry nothing except a walking stick and sandals. Isn’t that strange! We know too well that we need certain material goods in order to live; we need to eat, to dress and we need shelter, to mention but just some. Similarly, we need some material goods also to be able to carry out the mission. We know too well how in some places pastoral agents are struggling due to lack of material goods necessary for their work. They are looking for support. How then do we understand the instructions that Jesus gives?  Doesn’t he appreciate the importance of such material goods?

Fr. Chama’s homily is divided into the following sections:

  • Strange Instructions
  • Instruction in the Light of the Misison
  • Go Away from Here!
  • How Focused Are You?
Click on title to read entire homily.
Msgr. Joseph A. Pellegrino

SOARING WITH CHRIST

DIOCESE OF ST. PETERSBURG | 2021

I want you to do something now, close your eyes and picture yourself gazing up into the sky.  Then in the distance above you there is a huge bird soaring.  At first you think it must be a plane or a helicopter, but you don’t hear a motor, what you hear is the flapping of wings and the calling of an eagle.  The eagle starts circling down, coming closer and closer to you.  You are not frightened, just intrigued.  Finally, it lights right next to you.  It’s huge.  Then it turns its head to you, holds out a wing, and touches its back.  It’s inviting you to climb onto its back.  It wants to take you for a ride.  So you do.  And you soar with that eagle.  The earth looks so beautiful from its back.  The heavens seem so close.  It is all rather glorious.

 But it is not enough for you to be soaring on the eagles back.  The eagle sets down in the middle of your friends, your neighborhood, your workplace, your family.  And the eagle looks at you and at them. You realize it is telling you to invite them to climb up onto its back and soar with you.  And so we hold out our hands for others to join us.  That is what today’s readings tell us to do.  We are to call out to others to join us on the amazing journey that is the Christian life.  We are to tell them, proclaim to them, that the eagle is Jesus Christ.  And the wonderful journey with Him, on his back, is the Christian Life.

 We climb onto the Eagle.  We hold out our hands.  And we invite others to come with us and soar.

Click on title to read entire homily.

Related Homilies

Amos and Us—Everyday People Called to Prophesy (2018)
Amos and Us—Everyday People Called to Prophesy (2015)
Preaching to Those Not in the Choir (2012)
We are Ordinary People Called to Do Extraordinary Things (2009)
Amos and Us—Everyday People Called to Prophesy (2006) – PDF

Fr. George Smiga

THE BEACH, THE OFFICE, AND DETACHMENT

BUILDING ON THE WORD | 2006

Hot sun, breezes off the water, rhythmic waves.  A little girl kneeling on the ground, scoops up sand and packs it tightly into her bucket.  She turns it upended and gently lifts it.  To the delight of the young architect, her castle tower is formed.  She will spend the rest of the afternoon dedicated to her work, scooping out the moat, packing tightly the walls, building bridges out of Popsicle sticks, and sentinels out of bottle caps.

Big city, busy streets, rumble of traffic. A business man sits in the corner office of the high rise tower next to his computer screen, shuffling papers, making assignments, crunching numbers.  His bluetooth is on his ear and constantly flickering.  He too is in the midst of construction.

Two builders, two castles.  They share much in common.  Both have a mission.  Both are dedicated to that mission. Both are making something new out of the materials that have been presented to them. But there’s a difference between the little girl and the business man.  For all her seriousness, the little girl approaches her work with detachment.  At the end of the day she will watch with joy as the tide comes in and washes her castle away.  She will go home without sorrow, without fear, without regret.  The business man may not be as wise.  He may allow his commitment to his work to cloud his vision. He may imagine that that commitment can guarantee his success and that his work can last forever.

The gospel today calls us to find the right balance in our life between commitment and detachment.  We must be committed to our responsibilities, addressing them with energy and with zeal.  But we must not imagine that our commitment guarantees our success.  We must put our work, and indeed our entire lives, in God’s hands.

Click on title to read entire homily.

Related Homilies

The Grace of Repentance (2009)
Extra Luggage (2012)
Learning from the Prophet Amos (2015)
Speaking the Word Within Us (2018)

Fr. LARRY RICHARDS

GOD CREATED US TO BE HOLY

THE REASON FOR OUR HOPE | 2018

God gave you a purpose. He wanted you. You did not have to exist. I did not have to exist. He wanted you and me here. We are not a mistake. We are created by God for a purpose. He wanted us here.

What He created us to be is holy. Now, we know that holiness means set apart for God. Holiness means to be like God. Forever, I only focus on what holiness is, is obedience but only to my stuff so I can check off my bars. Holiness is praying every day – check! Holiness is saying the rosary every day – check! Holiness is doing the Divine Mercy Chaplet every day – check! Holiness is taking care of the poor – check! Holiness is sitting there and being pure to your state or being a virgin like moi – check! All those things I can check off, I must be holy.

But, it’s quite interesting because holiness isn’t just about obedience to those things that make us moral, it is that, of course, but it’s much deeper as we’ve talked about in the last weeks. Holiness is to obey God but what’s the greatest and the only teaching of Jesus and the greatest commandment? Love one another as He has loved us – uncheck. Hmmm.

Click on title to read entire homily.
Fr. John Kavanaugh, SJ

THE BURDEN OF BAGGAGE

SUNDAY WEB SITE | 1997

It’s not merely the things we stuff in our luggage or carry along with our entourage. It may be all the excess trappings of our power, privilege, and money. It may be crusty ideology and pet theories. As an old woman from North Saint Louis used to say: “I’d rather see a sermon lived than talked.”

A Christian, whether pope or peasant, is most effective in discipleship when least ambivalent in motive. It is so easy to skim the benefits off the top. It is so tempting to serve the good news of our own egos and prominence, rather than yield to the harrowing truths we preach.

If we profess that “it is in Christ and through his blood that we have been redeemed and our sins forgiven,” then perhaps our lives could be lived a little more simply, a little less ambiguously. It might be more evident to others and ourselves that it is indeed Christ we are made for, not the trappings we carry.

Click on title to read entire homily.
Fr. Eugene Lobo, S.J.

OUR SEARCH FOR MEANING

SUNDAY REFLECTIONS | 2021

Every human person in today’s world seeks to find meaning to his or her life.  People particularly young ones are often discouraged when they are unable to perceive the way of life and aim to search for it in wrong and absurd ways. According to the theologian Paul Tillich the word God translates as the depth of our life, the source of our being, and our ultimate concern, what we take seriously without any reservations. So our search for meaning connects with our search for God. Every human person has a purpose to fulfill in life. All have a specific task and are individually called by God for a task or a mission.  The call that God gives is personal.  We will not comprehend the mission easily unless we are totally attentive to his calling just as young Samuel was and respond as Isaiah or Jeremiah prophet did. Our entire person must be totally attentive to his invitation.

All three readings of today tell us of the mission that is specifically given to every individual by Jesus. In the Gospel of Mark, we see Jesus sending out his disciples on a mission. They are sent to the Israelite community to proclaim the message of the kingdom of God. They are to proclaim the need for repentance and offer them the gift of healing. Jesus relies on human support in preaching the gospel to people. In the first reading, Prophet Amos refuses to abandon his mission.  He must speak God’s word to those who need to hear it. In the second reading, we praise Father, Son and Spirit for lavishing us with every spiritual blessing.  We bask in their freely given divine love and intimate care.

Click on title to read entire homily.

15th Sunday of Year B

BASILICA OF THE NATIONAL SHRINE

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Rev. Richard Mullins (Pastor, St. Thomas Apostle Parish) preaching homily for 15th Sunday in Ordinary time on July 15, 2018 in the Crypt Church at the Basilica of the National Shrine in Washington DC.

Sunday Homilies

July 11, 2021 | July 15, 2018 | July 12, 2015 | July 15, 2012 | July 12, 2009

15th Sunday of Year B

Cardinal Tagle

TEACH AND LIVE THE GOSPEL

THE WORD EXPOSED (2018)

RECENT VIDEOS
Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh, cmf

THE MISSIONARY IN FACE OF REJECTION

HOMILY TRANSCRIPT

In our last Sunday’s gospel we meditated upon the rejection of Jesus by His own townspeople. The first reading of today presents us with the actual rejection of Prophet Amos in these terms ‘Go away, seer’…. The Prophet does not allow this violent refusal of himself to frighten him. He does not suspend his mission because the closed minds of his persecutors cannot block him. He courageously insisted: “‘I was a shepherd, and looked after sycamores: but it was the Lord who took me from herding the flock, and the Lord who said, “Go, prophesy to my people Israel.”’ Am 7:15

Despite all the rejection Jesus had as portrayed in last the Sunday’s Gospel (Mark 6:6-1) he continues his mission and from among His followers, chooses the Twelve, His band of intimate friends. The Twelve together with the other disciples are Jesus’ true family and community. The Gospel reading today reading reminds us that Mission is at the heart of the Church. After Jesus chose his disciples, he taught them who he is and what they needed to know. After they had gotten a basic understanding and consciousness of his Mission, he sent them out, giving them authority to preach, heal and act in his name. 

The disciples are sent out into the world to liberate man long held captive by the devil. They would have to preach, cast out demons and heal the sick. They were vulnerable and, like the prophet Amos in our first reading, their message of repentance was their only real resource. If the people showed them hospitality it would mean that they were also receptive to Jesus’ message. If they were rejected, so was Jesus’ message and they had to leave, shaking the dust from their sandals to symbolise their departure from a place where God’s Word was not welcome and provide a clear sign for all to see and understand. Jesus did not let opposition and other setbacks discourage him and neither should we. That is the challenge of today’s gospel. By virtue of their baptism and confirmation, every Christian is commissioned to a ministry of love and justice We are called today to a serious examination of conscience on the contribution we are making to advance the spread of the Gospel and in preaching salvation from Christ. Let us be bearers of the Gospel, for that is more honour to us than the advantages of being a follower of Christ.

Fr. Jude Thaddeus Langeh, cmf
Please pray for me

Jeff Cavins

WHAT A RICH INHERITANCE WE HAVE IN CHRIST!

ASCENSION PRESENTS (2018)

John Michael Talbot

HE BEGAN TO SEND THEM OUT

THEOLOGICAL REFLECTIONS (2018)

15th Sunday of Year B

Bishop Robert Barron

Sunday Podcasts

SUMMED UP IN CHRIST

by Bishop Robert Barron . July 15, 2018

For many people in the West, liberty seems to trump everything. We avatars of the egodrama, we worshippers at the altar of freedom, say that our choice is supreme. We don’t want anyone to constrain our pursuit of money, success, power, influence, safety, or physical health. But what matters in the end is not to place our wills in the position of ultimate concern. Everything in nature, history, science, and our careers is, in the end, summed up in Christ.


THE TWELVE AND THE NEW ISRAEL

by Bishop Robert Barron . July 15, 2012

This week, Mark relays the story of Jesus giving the Twelve Apostles their “marching orders,” the instructions on how they would go out and spread the word to the world. Notably, he tells them to go “two by two,” laying the foundation for the communal nature of the Church. They are to bring nothing but the simple tools to keep them moving forward, and they are be resolute in fighting the demons of the world-injustice, corruption and dysfunction. These were as much instructions for the Apostles as they are instructions for us to fulfill the mission of the Church today.


THE WAY OF THE PROPHET

by Bishop Robert Barron . July 12, 2009

If you walk the path of the prophet, you will abandon your own “career” and learn to follow the promptings of the Spirit. Also, you will be opposed. Once you accept and internalize those two lessons, you are ready to be a bearer of God’s word.


THE FIVE ACT DRAMA

by Bishop Robert Barron . July 16, 2006

For the next several weeks, we are going to be reading from Paul’s magnificent letter to the Ephesians. In our passage for today, we learn that we are situated within the context of a great theodrama, written and directed by God, and designed to lead us to eternal life. The Biblical drama has five acts: creation, the fall, the formation of Israel, Jesus Christ, and the Church. We read the Scriptures in order to discern the contours of that drama and, more importantly, our place within it.


SENT OUT TWO BY TWO

by Bishop Robert Barron . July 13, 2003

Another homily from Fr. Robert Barron and Word on Fire Catholic Ministries.


Recent Podcasts

15th Sunday of Year B

Father Frank Pavone

GOD MAKES KNOWN HIS WILL TO US

HOMILY SUGGESTIONS

Watch a video with homily hints

The apostles were called to “to preach repentance,” as is the Church today. This is a key aspect of being a “prophet” (First reading). It’s not so much about telling the future as it is about telling the present, pointing out to God’s people how fidelity to Him today means we have to change.

A key aspect of repentance in our present circumstances is suggested by the Second Reading, which is all about God’s choice. He chose us in Christ before the world began. That in itself is a subject for profound reflection. Before anything ever existed, before the first event that any history book relates, we were already chosen to exist, to believe, and to be holy. God knew us, wanted us, and loved us.

What this reveals is that God’s choice is primary. Human choice is secondary. “It was not you who chose me,” Jesus teaches elsewhere, “But I who chose you” (Jn. 15:16). “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins” (1 John 4:10). Since God first chose each human person to exist, no human can choose for them not to exist. “Pro-choice” is a mentality that puts our choice above God’s, and therefore is contrary to the lesson of these readings. “Pro-choice” essentially says that we have responsibility only to those lives for which we choose to have responsibility. Scripture teaches, on the other hand, that we have responsibility for others before we choose, and that in choosing, we have the duty to take that pre-existing responsibility into account. Here lies a key aspect of repentance, for us personally and for our culture.

GENERAL INTERCESSIONS

General Intercessions

Celebrant: We gather strength from the example of Jesus and his disciples. As a people of faith, we join together to ask the Father’s help and to bring him all our needs.

Deacon/Lector:

That all members of the Church may be strengthened by the Spirit to be ever-faithful to their baptismal calling to proclaim Christ to the world, we pray to the Lord…

That bishops, priests and deacons may continue to lead us to encounters with God in the Scriptures and in the sacraments, we pray to the Lord…

That world leaders may recognize God as the source of true authority, and may seek mercy and freedom for all people, we pray to the Lord…

That the Church may preach with compassion the need of repentance from all sins against life, and point the way to a new reverence for those who are poor, weak, unwanted, and unborn, we pray to the Lord…

That those gathered in our community of faith may embrace God’s message of compassion and forgiveness, we pray to the Lord…

That those who have died may have peace and joy in the presence of God, whom they served on earth, we pray to the Lord…

Celebrant:  God our Father, as we bring you these petitions, grant that we may grow in appreciation of the beauty and wonder of your creation. We ask this through Christ our Lord.

SOURCE: Priests for Life

Life Issues Homilies

Lifeissues.net website publishes articles directly related to issues raised in Evangelium Vitae, and related homilies by Fr. Al Cariño, O.M.I., Fr. Tony Pueyo, and others.

Call, response, mission

Al Carino

Obviously, to be Christ’s apostle, to be His ambassador, much is required of us. But we are not to worry. For God who is never outdone in generosity will provide whatever we need so that we can live up to our noble calling.


Simplify

Antonio P. Pueyo

It helps the missionary to travel lightly, to simplify his lifestyle, and to check his priorities in the light of the mission to bring to people a touch of the Divine


Like sheep without a shepherd

Frank Enderle

Each one of us has a vocation. Christ asks us to live out that vocation placing ourselves at the service of God and of humanity. The Church needs good Christians who can transmit the Good News of Christ to all those who seek God, to all those who wander about like sheep without a shepherd.


God Bestows Blessings on His People

Jeremiah R. Grosse

Facing the wrath of a sovereign was certainly not something that many Christians were unfamiliar with. On several occasions, John Chrysostom was exiled from his position as archbishop of Constantinople for challenging Empress Theodora and the corrupt actions of her government. Like the ancient prophets, John took his life in his hands when he openly challenged the empress; however, he knew that he had to speak out and was willing to risk his life for the truth.

Lifeissues.net website publishes articles directly related to issues raised in Evangelium Vitae, and related homilies by Fr. Al Cariño, O.M.I., Fr. Tony Pueyo, and others.

15th Sunday of Year B

Laudato Si’ – POPE FRANCIS

Albert Bierstadt, Among the Sierra Nevada, California, 1868, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum,

The word “creation” has a broader meaning than “nature,” for it has to do with God’s loving plan in which every creature has its own value and significance.

Nature is usually seen as a system that can be studied, understood and controlled, whereas creation can only be understood as a gift from the outstretched hand of the Father of all, and as a reality illuminated by the love which calls us together into universal communion. (76)

Click to access 15th_OT_B_7-11-21.pdf

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