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Posted on 02/17/2019 12:04 PM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
Posted on 02/10/2019 05:12 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
It was the year 1219 more than 800 years ago. Two Italian men wearing rags were found traversing a city in Egypt where the Sultan of Egypt defeated 5,000 Christian crusaders. The soldiers quickly captured and beat these poor Italian men and brought them before the Sultan of Egypt, Malek al-Kamil who was the nephew of the famous Sultan Saladin. The Sultan asked them by whom and why they had been sent, and one of the two, Francis of Assisi, replied that they had been sent by God, not by men, to show the Sultan and his subjects the way of salvation and proclaim the truth of the Gospel message. The Sultan asked Francis to stay with him for several days for he was impressed by Francis’ enthusiasm, courage, and love that flowed from him. Fast forward 800 years in 2019, another Italian man bearing the name of Francis arrived in United Arab Emirates (UAE) several days ago. He rode in a South Korean car costing $18,000 trailed by luxury cars costing several times more. Later, he celebrated a historic Holy Mass in a sports stadium in Abu Dhabi for a crowd of 130,000 Catholics from 100 different nations. Inside a country known for opulent wealth and excess, Pope Francis preached about happiness or blessedness being poor in spirit by witnessing the lifestyle of Jesus. He said,
“Let us look at how Jesus lived: poor in respect to things, but wealthy in love; he healed so many lives, but did not spare his own...He came to serve and not to be served; he taught us that greatness is not found in having but in giving. Just and meek, he did not offer resistance, but allowed himself to be condemned unjustly. In this way Jesus brought God’s love into the world. Only in this way did he defeat death, sin, fear and even worldliness: only by the power of divine love.”
The lyrics from an old hymn, “How Can I Keep From Singing,” reminds us that this life is not about building for ourselves the most comfortable environment where we expect no suffering. Rather Christ invites his disciples on earth to reflect on how He gave His life for others out of love, enduring suffering patiently that came His way, and trusting His Father during storms of life. The words of the song are:
I know my Savior liveth
What though the darkness gather round?
Songs in the night he giveth
No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that refuge clinging
Since Christ is Lord of heaven and earth
How can I keep from singing?
God’s purpose for us does not depend on our virtue or worthiness. Jesus does not wait for us to be perfect before calling us to work with him in serving others. Rather, our humble acknowledgement of our littleness and weakness opens the doors of our hearts for Christ to work through us. Like Peter, we make mistakes while we try to serve Jesus and our neighbor. But as the saying goes, “God doesn’t call the qualified; rather, God qualifies those He calls.”
Posted on 02/3/2019 00:07 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
Our Lord knows our capacity to rise above darkness as well as our tendency to give in to evil. God told Prophet Jeremiah that before we were formed in our mother’s womb, God knew us intimately. Our Lord also knew how fickle his hometown folks in Nazareth could be. Last week, we heard how Jesus impressed his hometown folks who came to the synagogue and heard his preaching. This week we are told that people in that same synagogue felt insulted and became incensed by part two of Jesus’ sermon. They were so angry that they took Jesus out to a cliff to throw him off. His hometown’s violent rejection foreshadowed Jesus’ mission as well as his destiny--to set free those under the power of evil and to pay for the price of our freedom with the sacrifice of his own life.
What is the greatest spiritual gift for which we should strive? It’s God’s Love--His patience, His kindness, His perseverance, His Trust, and His Hope. God wants us to “borrow” His Love in order for us to love Him and our neighbor perfectly. How do we borrow His Love? Do we check it out from some library? In fact, we are going to borrow His Love in a few moments when the Holy Spirit transforms our meager offerings represented by the earthly bread and wine into the real flesh and blood of God’s only Son, Jesus Christ, through your prayers and the prayers of the priest. Then representing all of us present in this church, the priest lifts the two gifts--Jesus’ flesh and blood--and says to God the Father, “Through him, and with him, and in him, O God, almighty Father, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor is yours forever and ever. Amen.” At that moment, we offer to God the Father, Jesus’ infinite sacrifice of love to the Father; at that moment, Jesus’ sacrifice becomes our sacrifice, and we love God perfectly with his own divine love. Even after Holy Mass, we are the living and walking Tabernacles, taking within us the presence of Jesus and the Holy Spirit who empowers us to be able to love God and others in ordinary situations of life.
Posted on 01/27/2019 13:02 PM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
Posted on 01/25/2019 11:28 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
Posted on 01/25/2019 02:38 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
At Manresa after evening prayer, I sat down to spend a little more time in the silence to pray. I had my eyes closed, but I began to hear a clicking and clacking noise. I opened my eyes and saw Fr. Pat Mascarella making his way through the chapel with his white cane. His sight had failed him gradually during the past two decades, and he could only distinguish light and darkness. He knew that the chapel had been remodeled since his last visit to Manresa, and he wanted to 'see' how the remodeling came out. He had made his way to the sanctuary and used his hands to feel the new altar and the ambo. He approached the tabernacle with his white cane and slowly began to feel the relief that is etched on to the tabernacle door. It is a relief of Jesus’ baptism by St. John the Baptist.
Posted on 01/20/2019 11:33 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
Posted on 01/13/2019 11:11 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
|Baptism site on Israeli side of Jordan River|
(not the probably site of Jesus' baptism)
|Site of Baptism on Jordanian side|
(more likely site of Jesus' baptism)
Posted on 01/9/2019 11:29 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
Posted on 01/6/2019 13:11 PM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)