Woe to you

When I was a year or two short of being a full-fledged teenager, I was invited to attend my first funeral. It was not a Catholic funeral – and as I came to know – nothing like a Catholic funeral. It was a fundamentalist, born-again, raucous affair for a person who by all measures was a backsliding, church-skipping, no-good, no-count, reprobate of a man. The preacher made no bones about where this particular dearly-departed would spend eternity. He held up the miserable failing and sinful ways of this man as a warning of what would happen when Satan got his claws into you and dragged you down into the pit. Continue reading

The Grave

The Lord said: “Woe to you Pharisees!… You are like unseen graves over which people unknowingly walk.” (Luke 11:42).

Back before this pandemic, I would often go with friends to the movie theatre. I am forever fascinated by the movie previews they select. I always think that the folks in marketing select the previews based on who they think is about to watch the feature movie. I remember going to watch a movie, “The Martian” which was about a US astronaut who is left behind, stranded on Mars. It is a story of the heroic human condition in the face of adversity. It is a science fiction movie. It is many things. But the previews were almost all horror movies. Maybe it was the proximity to Halloween. Continue reading

Directing the Gospel

woe_unto_youSeveral weeks ago on my blog, I published “Your Script”.  I am borrowing from that post for today’s homily. In the gospel Jesus says, “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida”. Previously I noted that one way I explore Scripture is to imagine that I am a cinema director tasked with filming today’s gospel as a scene in the larger narrative about the life of Jesus.  So…. what direction would you give to actor playing Jesus about the tone and tenor he should use in the line above? Continue reading