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John Connelly

Fidelity in small things leads on to Jesus

John Connelly
September 12, 2016
25th Sunday in Ordinary Time
September 18, 2016

Jesus, in this week's Gospel, says, "Whoever is faithful in a very little is faithful also in much; and whoever is dishonest in a very little is dishonest also in much." This Scripture should get our attention. It speaks volumes in a world that ignores virtue and actually celebrates vice. It speaks to us of purity of heart, purity of intention, purity of life.

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God gives us his kingdom, and we rejoice

John Connelly
July 25, 2016
Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
August 7, 2016

In this week's Gospel, the words of Jesus to his disciples should encourage us all: "Do not be afraid any longer, little flock, for your Father is pleased to give you the kingdom." We all have fears. Fear of death. Fear of being destitute. Fear of not being loved. Conscious fears and unconscious fears. I remember as a small child checking to make sure no monsters were hiding in my closet. I was afraid some unnamed fear was going to sneak up on me when I was alone.

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Jesus walks with lambs in midst of wolves

John Connelly
June 27, 2016
Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
July 3, 2016

In this week's Gospel, Jesus speaks these words to his disciples, "I am sending you out like lambs among wolves." This is an interesting image. Lambs are not normally sent among wolves. Wolves prey on lambs. They kill them and eat them. What is Jesus getting at? We live in a world filled with predators, a world where the innocent are preyed upon. A world where violence, abuse and war are considered normal.

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Live in God's kingdom by trusting Jesus

John Connelly
May 16, 2016
Body and Blood of Christ
May 29, 2016

I have been thinking lately about what it means to be powerless. If a car is powerless, it cannot move. If the power goes out in my house, I cannot use my appliances. We don't like the idea of not having any power. Money gives us personal power. Our media devices give us power. But Jesus says something amazing in the Gospel of John: "Without me, you can do nothing" (15.5). We should let that soak into the core of our being.

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God will meet us in the present moment

John Connelly
April 18, 2016
Fifth Sunday of Easter
April 24, 2016

The scriptures constantly point us to life's spiritual dimension. This week's Second Reading from Revelation says, "See, the home of God is among mortals. He will dwell with them as their God; they will be his peoples, and God himself will be with them. "He will wipe every tear from their eyes. Death will be no more; mourning and crying and pain will be no more for the first things have passed away. And the one who was seated on the throne said, 'See, I am making all things new.'"

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Meditate on your death in light of the cross

John Connelly
March 7, 2016
Palm Sunday
March 20, 2016

A great king does not ordinarily ride on the back of a common donkey. So the image of Jesus coming into Jerusalem in this way should cause us to reflect and pray. Jesus is a different kind of king. He is a king who comes with the most profound humility imaginable. He is a king who comes to suffers with us. He is the King of Mercy riding on a donkey into the lives of all who receive him. When I lived on a small farm in Radway, we had a donkey in the yard who would just stand there not doing much. I would go to the fence and talk to him, but he was stubbornly unimpressed and usually would not move.

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Jesus' cross calls us to battle against evil

John Connelly
February 8, 2016
First Sunday of Lent
February 14, 2016

Lent reminds us all that we are on an interior journey that does not end until the day we die. This journey takes us through deserts. It is a journey that brings us into a battle with our ancient and sinister foe. It is a journey that ultimately leads to victory through the cross. I do not enjoy suffering. I do not enjoy the desert days where God's presence seems far away. I do not enjoy the internal battles when the powers of darkness cause temptation, stress and anxiety.

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Seed of faith grows into eternal destiny

John Connelly
December 21, 2015
Holy Family
December 21, 2015

What do you and I really believe deep down in the depths of our heart and soul? Do we believe the words in this week's Sacred Scripture? Do we believe in the story of the virgin who conceived and bore a divine-human son? Do we believe the whole world will one day bow before this great king who came to be born in a stable?

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Trust God is on your side and receive mercy

John Connelly
November 23, 2015
First Sunday in Advent
November 29, 2015

The pope declared an extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy beginning Dec. 8. We need to reflect on the profound reality that no one is beyond the mercy of Jesus. Mercy is available to presidents, prime ministers, rich and poor, old and young, prisoners, drug addicts, the marginalized, everyone.

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Cry out for mercy, Jesus will answer

John Connelly
October 12, 2015
30th Sunday in Ordinary Time
October 25, 2015

We all have a profound need for the mercy of Jesus in our lives. The human heart can never be fully awakened unless we encounter his mercy in a personal way. In this week's Gospel we read: "As Jesus was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizeable crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus, sat by the roadside begging.

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