Monday, June 22, 2015

Praise God for my third anniversary of ordination to the priesthood: Daily Mass Homily--Monday, June 22nd, 2015

(Listen to this homily here).

            With gratitude to God, I am celebrating my third anniversary to the priesthood today.
            Ordination weekend three years ago was the best weekend of my life—hands down.  I was ordained on a Friday afternoon.  This was the moment in which I was consecrated and sealed to be a priest for all eternity.  If you have never been to an ordination try to get to one!  Saturday morning I presided at my first Mass with my family and friends in attendance.  Sunday morning featured a Mass of thanksgiving at my home parish, Holy Family, in McGregor.  My best friends served as lectors, musicians, ushers and extraordinary ministers of holy Communion.  It was a joyful weekend all around.
            This morning we heard about Abraham (at this point Abram).  In the 12th chapter of Genesis—the 12th chapter of the whole Bible—God simply tells Abram, “Go forth from the land of your kinsfolk and from your father’s house to a land that I will show you.”  Abram’s response: “Abram went as the LORD directed him…”  Abraham is rightly called our father in faith.  He followed God without hesitation, without excuse, without question.
            If I have learned anything in three years of priesthood, it is that the closer we follow God’s will, the happier we are.  I love a quote from Pope Benedict XVI I have quoted before: “Do not be afraid of Christ!  He takes nothing away, and he gives you everything.  When we give ourselves to him, we receive a hundredfold in return.”  Like the countless men and women who have gone before us, let us not be afraid to follow Christ unreservedly!
            Finally, this morning I humbly ask of your prayers.  Pray that I may be a healthy, happy and holy priest.  As I said when I arrived last summer, I want only to lead you to Jesus.  Pray that I may be such a bridge—and never an obstacle—to Jesus.  Pray that I may receive wisdom for difficult decisions I need to make as a pastor.
            It is an honor to serve you and your families—please pray that I may do so faithfully!

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