This week, Fr. Bill Smith and Alexander Lerangis discuss last Sunday’s readings, how receiving what we desire sometimes requires letting go of what we love, and what drew Alex to St. Charles Borromeo parish.
St. Charles at Home episodes feature conversation between the prior Sunday’s homilist and parishioners to provide us with more connection to the parish during the week. The videos are available on our YouTube channel and our website.
Today’s readings and hymns are available to download here: July 5
As per the instructions from our Reopening Committee, hymnals, bulletins, and other handouts will not be available at the church. Please download on your phone or tablet or bring your own missal.
What seems like a lifetime ago but was only back on March 21, I included in my introduction to the weekly parish email the quote “These are the times that try men’s souls,” from a pamphlet titled The Crisis written by Thomas Paine in December 1776 during a time of crisis for our newly founded country.
Back in March, I don’t think any of us had any notion of how we might be tried in 2020 as individuals, families, communities, states, and a country during the Covid-19 pandemic, the resulting economic hardship, and the longstanding crisis of racial inequality in our country. While we have not yet seen the end of these crises, what I do know is that because of our faith in Jesus Christ, TOGETHER we will persevere and succeed because as a faith community we can and have pulled together and done the right things—let us continue to do so. As Matthew writes in Sunday’s gospel:
I give praise to you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth,
for although you have hidden these things
from the wise and the learned
you have revealed them to little ones.
Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will.
While the road ahead remains bumpy, I am continually amazed at the Christian love, generosity, kindness, ingenuity, openness, and creativity I have read about but also witnessed in our St. Charles parish family and the wider community. We, the little ones, can do so much good.
So as we celebrate the founding of our country, and a return to celebrating Mass in our beautiful church sanctuary, let us be grateful for the freedoms we have and all do our part to work to secure the resolution of those crises we are confronted with today.
My first course at the seminary in the Bible was impressively titled “Theological Anthropology in Scripture.” Unlike most portentously named academic course descriptions, this one actually reflected the material. It examined Genesis 1–11 and Romans 1–8. It was called theological anthropology because it explored how the Bible saw human beings. We explored how modern uses and assumptions did not always reflect what the Scriptures meant and were not necessarily superior. This is seen very clearly in today’s selection from Romans 8.
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In Matthew’s Gospel it is very important to know to whom Jesus is speaking. Today’s gospel is addressed to the apostles. The word apostle was used very loosely in the New Testament and indeed early Christian writings in general. This was before HR departments and “realistic job previews”. For Matthew, an apostle is “one who is sent” a rather literal translation of the word in Greek. He is vague however as to whom the word applies but I think it is a personal invitation to you.