Month: January 2011

Sts. Timothy & Titus

It is important to remember that today’s feast follows immediately on the heels of the feast of the conversion of St. Paul…who was intimately associated with these two great saints and early successors of the apostles.  As you may know, in recent years, the tomb of St. Paul was excavated at St. Paul outside the walls in Rome.  As a seminarian, I would visit this tomb with an Italian priest friend.  This friend of mine had a great fascination with “friendship”.  On our first visit to this tomb, he told a marvelous story of the […]

Surrender To God

Today we celebrate the conversion of St. Paul.  His “immediate conversion” story is perhaps one of the best known accounts in all of Christian history.  For that reason, I am “struck” with the thought that no matter how powerfully God intervened in Saul’s life, there was still for him as for all of us a pre-requisite of personal surrender. Such immediate conversions are rare in our history.  For most saints, indeed most of us, the process of surrendering to God’s will is gradual.  One of the reasons I believe it is gradual is because to […]

Ancient Principles, Modern Challenges

Here are some thoughts from today’s homily at Mass marking the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade: Love, Truth, Morality: These things are not mutually exclusive, though if one listens only to the public debate of our time, they would think they are.  If the only way for a person to “freely” do what he or she chooses is to ignore the voice of God, then it is a false freedom.  And just because we as Church take a moral stand on the serious issues of our day does not mean we fail to love.  Quite […]

Validity of Marriage Act

The Wyoming State Legislature is presently considering legislation that would close a loop-hole in state law.  Presently, Wyoming statute defines marriage as a contract “between a male and a female person”, but state law also recognizes any legal marriage performed out of the state.  Thus, individuals who have contracted a same-sex union in other states or countries, and file for divorce in Wyoming, create a necessity for the state to “recognize” their union should they legally provide for their divorce. House Bill 0074 seeks to specify that 1)marriages other than of a male and a […]

January Institute 2011

Well, the 2011 January Institute is now “in the books” and a part of history.  For a number of reasons, it will prove to be a significant part of our history! We had a record attendance for this year’s institute.  People came with open hearts and open minds, ready to “get to work” on the second phase of outlining our diocesan strategic pastoral plan. The first evening began with Mass at the Cathedral.  This was, by my estimation, one of the great benefits and blessings of this week, having the diocese fully represented in the […]

Clarification & Recent Events

Judging from some of the recent comments on Saturday’s talk regarding “Natural Law”, it is necessary to clarify that this talk was not given to the State Legislature.  This was a prayer rally held in the rotunda of the state capital building with around 70 people present, which did include a few representatives.  In other news, this week put a few more miles on the vehicle.  I had a nice visit with a couple priests in Riverton followed by Mass the next morning with the school children.  Then, it was off to Lander for a […]

Self-Evident Truths & Natural Law

Below is the text of the talk and prayer I gave at a prayer rally today at the State Capital building in Cheyenne in anticpation of a new legislative session.  It is very challenging to develop arguments that are faithful to our Church teaching which are “valid” in the public forum.  In this forum, any references to God, Scripture, Church teaching of any kind, are readily dismissed.  So, what follows is my first attempt to make such an argument. I welcome this opportunity to be with you today as we come together to pray for our […]

Do Not Be Afraid

In today’s Mass readings, there are two references to fear. First, in Mark’s Gospel, we see the Apostles in the boat during a storm.  As they see Jesus approach, walking on water, they are afraid.  Towards the end of the Gospel passage, Mark attributes their fear to a hardness of heart. They had all seen him and were terrified.  But at once he spoke with them, “Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid!”  (Mark 6:50) In the first reading from the First Letter of John, we hear another important reference to fear, and its corresponding […]

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton

Today the Church recalls our first native-born, American Saint; Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton.  Mother Seton was raised Episcopalian, and converted to the Catholic faith.  She had a deep spirituality at the heart of a difficult life.  Saint Elizabeth was a wife and mother of five children.  She lost her husband and also buried several of her children.  As with all human experience, these events played a role in the developing faith life of this devout woman, and foundress of the first Congregation for religious women in the US, the Daughters of Charity.  (Founded in 1812)  […]

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