Great Short Homilies

Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time

Matthew 7:15-20

Friends, in today’s Gospel, Jesus tells us that a tree is known by its fruits. In the fifth chapter of his Letter to the Galatians, Paul makes this very specific. He tells us that the fruits of the Holy Spirit are "love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control," implying that the Spirit’s presence in one’s life can be read from its radiance in these soul-expanding qualities.

All of Paul’s "fruits of the Holy Spirit" are marks of an outward-looking, expansive magna anima (great soul), which stands in contradistinction to the pusilla anima (cramped soul) of the sinner. Thus love is willing the good of the other as other; joy is self-diffusive; patience bears with the troublesome; kindness makes the other gentle; self-control restricts the havoc that the ego can cause; etc.  

When is the Spirit present? When these attributes are awakened and sustained; when our souls are made great

  Bishop Robert Barron

Baptisms at the Shrine!

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                                                                 O Immaculata, Be Present to Us!
                  “I am the handmaid of the Lord, let it be done to me according to your word.” –Luke 1:38
   
                               called the Marian sanctuaries — “spiritual clinics.” We bring our ailments: living without God as the center of our lives, lack of mercy and compassion, lack of appreciation of the gift of life. All weaken our souls. Powerful conversions occur at these shrines through God’s grace and the maternal intercession of the Mother of God. Healings take place by God through His Word. “Patients” encounter Jesus in the sacrament of reconciliation and the Holy Eucharist. Visit these privileged places to encounter Christ and rediscover your sense of baptismal vocation and to hear its saving call.

Reflection: Visit a shrine or church dedicated to Mary. Deepen your love for Mary Immaculate, so that her maternal embrace may greet you upon your death. Join with St. Bonaventure in praying:

“I ask thee, O Mary, for the glory of thy name, to come and meet my soul when it is departing from this world, and to take it in your arms.” 

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It is time for the Lord to act!