4th Sunday in Lent

This coming Sunday marks the fourth Sunday in Lent (Year C; but if you are attending a Mass at which one of the RCIA scrutinies is celebrating, you will hear readings other readings).You can read a complete commentary on this gospel here.

The traditional title of the parable focuses on the younger son who left home, the so-called prodigal son. Pause for a moment and ask your self if you know the definition of “prodigal.”  Years of leading Bible Studies has revealed that many people think “prodigal” carries the meaning of disrespectful, sinful – after all, didn’t the young man waste all his money on wine, women, and song – at least that is the charge of his older brother. Regardless of how the money – or more to the point – the inheritance was wasted, it is the waste that is key. The word “prodigal” means wasteful, profligate, or reckless. Continue reading

Tales from the front steps

“It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”  A quote often attributed to Mark Twain (although it seems that “ain’t so”). Nonetheless it is a nice summary of more than one conversation on the front steps of the church. Such as the one yesterday in which someone expressed their disbelief and near shock that our parish had chosen not to celebrate or announce the holy day of obligation. After a moment of internal… “what is he talking about?…” it dawned upon me that me was referring to the Solemnity of the Annunciation, celebrated today March 25th. When I reminded him the Annunciation was not a holy day of obligation, but that we were certainly celebrating the solemnity at our Masses, I was given “the stare” and then he walked away shaking his head. Of course I can’t know his thoughts, but I have seen “the stare” before. It is the one that says, “No wonder the Catholic Church is in trouble with priests like you.” I hope he well celebrates the solemnity; I know that we will.

Just another tale from the front steps of the church.