Sunday, February 16, 2020

Cluless

Clueless refers to those who just seem to be unaware - not informed - speaking without thinking. Most people luckily do not fall into this category - unfortunately - there are those who just do not get it - always one step behind - lost in thought - thinking about anything else not pertinent to the subject at hand.  Harmless but irritating at worse.  When given the opportunity to rise above themselves - usually disappoint due to inability to thoroughly think through an issue - stopping halfway - failing to complete the task - often misled by others who are self professed experts.  A sad situation - one that can be overcome with thoughtful intervention. 
Jesus had to cope with this issue in His time - those who failed to listen to what He said - listening instead to false prophets - those who were inventing their own story - about God - life - salvation.  To those who were wise - He words would take root - grow in their minds - hearts - lead to the truth - to salvation.  Today this issue still exists - many following false prophets - reinventing the truth to their advantage - telling their story - not God's - reinventing the Gospel - to their benefit -  preaching their plan - not God's.  We are all called to be wise - to listen well with our ears - to see with our eyes - the glory - the truth - revealed only by Jesus.

Deacon Dale 

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Salt Shakers

In today's Holy Scriptures we are instructed to take care of those around us - to feed - to  clothe - to be healers and doers - to be activists - to minister to all around us.  In the Gospel we are reminded that salt not used goes to waste - good for nothing more than to be thrown on the road - to melt ice - to be cast aside.  Even those with less - still often have more than those with none - those with little faith - still possess much more than those with no faith at all.  Each - though poor - often have things - skills - that may benefit - others.



We have been called - as disciples of Christ to be the salt that adds flavor - meaning - spice - to others lives.  Sharing the faith - hope - that we possess - even though little - has the possibility to make a large difference in the lives of even those who appear to have much. Those with lots of money - possessions - are sometimes the poorest when discussing faith matters.  It is not at all unusual to meet people who appear very wealthy - who feel naked - empty - of true meaning in their lives.  To those - we are called to be that inspiration - the salt - to bring true meaning into their life - to bring  God and His gift of Jesus - the One who heals and nourishes - who fills that void that so many experience in their lives. We are called to be the salt - to shake up others lives - to be spiritual salt shakers - to bring the light of Christ into their lives. 

Deacon Dale 

Sunday, February 2, 2020

The Presentation

Today the Church celebrates The Presentation of The Lord - that time when Joseph and Mary brought Jesus to the Temple - for Mary's purification rite after giving birth - Jesus's presentation as the First Born child.  It was the old people - Simeon - a High Priest of the Second Temple - the God Receiver - and Anna - the Prophetess who was near 84 years old.  Simeon's age is not mentioned but viewed as very old - awaiting the presence of the Christ Child.  Both Simeon and Anna strong in their faith - very firm in their beliefs - Temple dwellers - providing guidance to the younger members of the Temple community.   Staying strong in the face of adversity - weathering the changes of time - being faithful - excellent models for the younger - youthful members.  Proving time and again the value of age - sharing wisdom gained only from experiencing life itself - not gained from books - from first had knowledge itself.

That model - seeking wisdom - knowledge - from the senior members of society - still valuable today.  Unfortunately - all too many - reinventing the wheel - trying to improve on a model that has stood the test of time.  Rather than utilizing the tools already in place - expending so much energy seeking answers to questions that have already been answered.  What is being missed - properly utilizing existing tools cast aside.  Granted there are new ways to implement - approach the issues - in the end it comes down to effective - efficient utilization of resources already in place.  The most effective tool available - the very people themselves - making them understand that they are the answer - they have the power - to accomplish these tasks.  Recognizing the value of what you have - giving your best to the Lord - offering oneself in service - solves almost every issue.  Today - every day - each of us needs to stop - take stock of what we have to offer - to step up - stand up - step away from the crowd - to go to the altar and present ourselves.  Today the Presentation we should be celebrating is our own Presentation to God.

Deacon Dale 

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Casting Nets

It seems to be common knowledge when one is looking for something - anything - more than one pair of eyes is very beneficial  Loose something at home - best to ask another to help in the search  Loose something outside - best if additional persons become involved in the search.  Loose someone outside in bad weather - best to call a search party - many pair of eyes and ears - searching.  In desperate times when discovery required to be sooner as compared to later - cast a symbolic wide net - cover as large an area as possible - to minimize time and effort. The same goes when fishing in a pond- lake - river.  A single line will at best - catch one fish.  To catch more - a net is required - to catch as many as possible - a very large net - mandating the use of multiple people - to manage the net and eventual catch.  Using nets produces better results.


When Jesus began His ministry - fishing for men - fishing for people's souls - many hands - mouths - needed to spread the Gospel.  His initial twelve recruits - learning what His mission was all about - much more effective - after the Crucifixion.  Empowered by the Holy Spirit -  empowered by their shock at His death - empowered by their desire to serve their Lord - produced results not previously attained.  Today - you and I are fishermen - for Christ.  You and I are fishing for souls - leading people to a new- better relationship with God.  Today we no longer use nets - rather - we network - involve all the tools available - with as many people as available - to reach the masses.  Today as modern disciples of Christ - each of us is called to go out - to spread the Gospel - to Cast Nets.

Deacon Dale 

Sunday, January 19, 2020

I Come To Do Your Will

All have been called by God - usually through the voice of others - signs in the air - in Holy Scripture - great and small literary works - various events - situations.  All have been called - not all respond.  Many so busy with the demands of daily life - too busy to notice - others - hearing that call - choose to ignore - not worthy - too busy - someone else better qualified. Day in and day out God calls to each of us - awake - time is short - your hands - eyes and ears - your voice needed - to continue the works of His Son - Jesus.  None of us worthy - all are called.  Through the power and strength of His Holy Spirit - all able to do mighty and awesome works in His Name. 


God does not call us to walk on waters - die on a cross - rather in the everyday - ordinary events of life - we are called to be His witness to those around us - at work - in the marketplace - at sporting events - at home.  By our baptism - we share in the ministry of Christ.  We have been called to be priest - prophet - king of our lives and as such to take control of the good that we can do.  As modern day disciples we have been called to teach and preach - to comfort and heal - to forgive and reconcile - to build and create - the kingdom of God - here and now.  All have been called - who will answer His call.....

Here I Am Lord...
Deacon Dale 

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Baptism - Infants & Adults

This Sunday we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord - a feast that I find difficult.  The issue - since it so closely follows on the commemoration of Jesus' birth and the feast of the Holy Family - many rush to assume that this celebration is the baptism of the baby Jesus.  The truth - from last Sunday to this Sunday - we have jumped ahead in time by some 32 years!  The baptism we celebrate is not of the infant - rather the adult Jesus - baptized in the Jordan - by His cousin John who proclaimed - it is You who should be baptizing me.  Many question the significance of John baptizing Jesus - the One born of the Virgin - the One without Sin.  Why would Jesus subject Himself to this baptism?


Jordan River - Yardenit Baptism Site 2018 

God never asks us to do anything that He - Jesus - would not do Himself - anything - except die on a Cross.  That alone was reserved for His Son.  In proclaiming the Gospel message to His followers - Jesus used many examples in the parables that He spoke.  In preaching redemption - in instructing the masses of people - Jesus showed by example - although unnecessary - how simple it was to be baptized - to renounce sin - to enter into a relationship with God the father.  As a role model - Jesus - showed all how and what to do. Even today - through Holy Scripture - inspired preaching - humble actions - Jesus teaches us - all of us.  As we celebrate the baptism of Jesus - each of us needs to reflect on our own baptism - what it means to us - what we have been called to do - to live out our baptismal promises - to be priest - prophet - king - to proclaim the Gospel - wherever we go. 

Deacon Dale  





Sunday, January 5, 2020

Eureka!

Literally Eureka - a Greek word - means - I have found it.  Very often exclaimed after a long and arduous search.  Many search for various things - knowledge - wealth - love - answers to life's most difficult questions.  Often the answer sought for - right under one's nose - not as difficult as originally thought.  Too often these answers made more difficult by those who assume most questions have complex answers - whereas - rather very simple in reality.  In that moment - an eureka moment - an epiphany - an opening of one's eyes to the reality of this simplicity.  


Any sudden inspiration of any truth being revealed - an epiphany moment.  Such was the experience of the Magi who followed a star - revealing the Child Who Was To Come.  Some  epiphanies - divine - others more worldly.  Most people have experienced an epiphany - an unexpected discovery of any truth - real love - love for another - love by a God who created them.  The Church celebrates the Epiphany - the revealing of Jesus - to the Magi - to us.  As we grow in Faith - begin to understand our relationship to God - to Jesus - we experience another epiphany - that we are also children of God - brothers and sisters - of our Lord Jesus.  With this knowledge - we are all called to celebrate - share this knowledge with all we meet.

Deacon Dale 

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Changing Times

The end of one year - the beginning of a new - a promise of better - for everyone.  No matter how bad or good 2019 was - it is now past history - done and over - in the history books.  Many currently making new years resolutions - others - still coping with the year that was.  Most looking forward to a new and better year - others still clinging onto the disappointments - failures of 2019.  What is - is.  What was - was.  Now the time to let go - let God - moving faithfully forward.



No matter who or what promises were made that failed - God never fails.  As we begin this new year - as people of faith - we go forward - eyes open wide - looking forward to the blessings of a new year.  With God with us - we will accomplish awesome things.

Happy New Year
Deacon Dale