Catholic Homilies 2011

(by Fr Phil Bloom)

Current Homilies

The Gift of Freedom "Jesus came to bring true freedom. You know, there is a difference between superficial freedom and profound freedom. It might surprise you, but someone who understood this was Steve Jobs..." (December 25, 2011 - Christmas Homily)

The Promise of God "God can turn a liability into an advantage - not because we are so great, but because of his promise..." (December 18, 2011 - Fourth Sunday of Advent, Year B - 40th Anniversary Mass)

Joy is a Decision "I would like to begin with a humorous story: A famous preacher was trying to teach his students to make their facial expressions harmonize with what they are speaking about..." (December 11, 2011 - Third Sunday of Advent, Year B)

The Collect "Benedictine Father Jeremy Driscoll gives this definition of the Collect..." (December 4, 2011 - Second Sunday of Advent, Year B)

It Is Right and Just "In the third exchange, I say 'Let us give thanks to the Lord, our God.' And you respond, 'It is right and just.' This succinct phrase then becomes the subject matter of the Preface..." (November 27, 2011 - First Sunday of Advent, Year B)

The Fundamental Freedom - Freedom of Religion "It is hard to imagine that our government could start dictating what churches can teach or how they carry out their religious practices. Nevertheless, when the U.S. Bishops met last week, they sounded an alarm..." (November 24, 2011 - Thanksgiving Day)

A New Missal and a New Look at the Works of Mercy "As the Jerome Biblical Commentary says: 'This much-loved text...has been overinterpreted to say that neither faith in Christ nor membership in the Church is necessary for salvation.'" (November 20, 2011 - Feast of Christ the King, Year A)

Small Things with Great Love "There is a humorous story about a family coming out of Mass. The man says to his wife, 'That wasnít much of sermon that father gave...'" (November 13, 2011 - Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

The Rapture "Today's second reading contains a reference to an event sometimes called "the rapture." In fact, First Thessalonians 4:17 is the only biblical reference to a rapture in relation to the Second Coming of Jesus. So it deserves a closer look..." (November 6, 2011 - Thirty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Against All Forms of Idolatry "When the boy discovers that his girl loves the ring more than him, he is not so happy. And if he finds out she is using the ring to make her girl friends envious and show her superiority over them..." (October 30, 2011 - Thirty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

We Dare to Say "To dare is different than to be confident or to have courage. Let me give an illustration of the difference between daring and courage...'" (October 23, 2011 - Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Fighting Government Encroachment "Today freedom of conscience is under attack. You may have seen this news item: 'The U.S. bishops have established a new Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty to address growing concerns over the erosion of freedom of religion in America.' They mention six areas of government encroachment on freedom of religion. I will address only one...'" (October 16, 2011 - Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

For Many "Jesus shed his blood for all - and he invites all to the heavenly banquet. But not all accept the invitation. In a few weeks we will hear a more exact translation of Jesus' words: 'My blood...poured out for many...'" (October 9, 2011 - Twenty-Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

In the Midst of Troubles "One night he felt that he would die before morning and he began writing farewells to his wife, his son and his friends. He didnít sleep a wink. As the sun rose, he heard singing from a hospital chapel..." (October 2, 2011 - Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Our Final State "Perhaps Oscar Wilde learned a lesson from his own novel. His life is a mirror image of Dorian Gray..." (September 25, 2011 - Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

The Sole Question "Blessed John Henry Newman said, 'When we come into God's presence, we shall be asked two things, whether we were in the Church, and whether we worked in the Church. Everything else is worthless...'" (September 18, 2011 - Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

How to Forgive "Right after the attacks ten years ago, people in the media began saying that the problem is religious belief - that our world would be better without religion. A couple things need to be said..." (September 11, 2011 - Twenty-Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Dissuade the Wicked "In the context of a world growing dark, Pope Benedict addressed the central issue of our day..." (September 4, 2011 - Twenty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

The Real Cross "A cross one knows in advance, even if it is fairly heavy, is not longer the cross of Jesus. Our real cross is always to some degree unanticipated and always seems to surpass our strength. As a rule, we would never chose it...'" (August 28, 2011 - Twenty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Deep vs. Superficial Faith "Lionel Tiger, an anthropology professor at Rutgers University, asks why there has been so much family breakdown, male irresponsibility, single parents and abortion since the 1960's. He answers with two words: the pill..." (August 14, 2011 - Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year A)

For the next two weeks I will be on a World Youth Day pilgrimage. Here are homilies for Twenty-First and Twenty-Second Sundays: Why We Need Two Keys for Salvation (Aug 21) and Mother and Teacher (Aug 28) - and for the Assumption: I Am In Love. For news about this pilgrimage, please take a look at our group blog and SMV blog

Two Tasks for Youth "Blessed John Paul II used to say: Youth is not so much chronological as it is a time of decision. A young person asks these questions..." (August 7, 2011 - Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year A)

Withdrew to Deserted Place "You may have heard about the man who went to confession. 'Father,' he said, 'I have a terrible problem with stealing...'" (July 31, 2011 - Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year A)

Hidden Treasure "As a lead-in to today's Gospel, I would like to use an illustration from Don Quixote..." (July 24, 2011 - Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year A)

Himself the Kingdom "A mother once came across a group of boys watching a program called, Gorgeous Girls Wrestling. She asked them what they were watching. Her son responded..." (July 17, 2011 - Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year A)

To Sow In Trust "A woman approached me carrying her baby on her back. 'Padre,' she said, 'I am in a terrible situation...'" (July 10, 2011 - Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year A)

Take My Yoke "True freedom of course has a price - for a Christian there can be no adultery or fornication, no abortion or infanticide, no contraception or homosexual behavior..." (July 3, 2011 - Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year A)

Afflicted with Hunger "If a person stuffs himself with junk food, even the finest banquet will hold little attraction. Something similar applies to the Eucharist..." (June 26, 2011 - Body and Blood of Christ: Corpus Christ - Year A)

Origin and Goal "You know, the Mormons have a good instinct when they talk about 'marriage for time and eternity.' But they miss something..." (June 19, 2011 - Trinity Sunday, Year A)

It Was the Holy Spirit "The world faced an economic upheaval that caused millions to migrate. Here in America many immigrants lost their faith. The Holy Spirit did something unexpected. He touched the heart of girl in Northern Italy..." (June 12, 2011 - Pentecost Sunday, Year A)

The Personal Center "Let me conclude this homily with the example of a young man who made Jesus the center of his life. He was...deeply in love with a girl named Maruja." (June 5, 2011 - Ascension of the Lord, Year A)

A Reason For Your Hope "Recently the famous physicist, Stephen Hawking made news by stating - I quote: 'I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken down computers; that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark.'" (May 29, 2011 - Sixth Sunday of Easter, Year A)

The Truth "Sometimes people hold back from Christianity because they fear that it is 'exclusive.' In one sense that is understandable - Jesus does make some absolute claims..." (May 22, 2011 - Fifth Sunday of Easter, Year A)

Open the Door "Once a child came up to a priest after Mass. 'When I grow up, Father,' he said, 'I am going to give you some money.' The priest was charmed so he asked him why he wanted to do that..." (May 15, 2011 - Fourth Sunday of Easter, Good Shepherd Sunday)

Restoration "Peter proclaims the saving death and burial of Jesus. But, says Peter, Jesus does not remain in the grave. To make his point, Peter uses this argument..." (May 8, 2011 - Third Sunday of Easter, Mother's Day)

His Mercy Endures "As pope Benedict observed, people saw 'the horrors of human history, especially of the most recent human history, as an irrefutable pretext for denying the existence of a good God and slandering his creature man.' Someone who particularly witnessed the horrors of human history was the man beatified today: Blessed John Paul the Great..." (May 1, 2011 - Second Sunday of Easter, Mercy Sunday)

Seek What Is Above "The desire for spirituality is good, but it can be a little tricky. It can be like desiring to get into better condition..." (April 24, 2011 - Easter Sunday)

Suffering Is Everything "The Stoics said, 'suffering is nothing.' They were wrong. Illuminated by a clearer light we Christians say, 'suffering is everything.'" (April 22, 2011 - Good Friday)

The Love of Loves "When he couldn't find the pope, he began to think about Morris West's novel, The Shoes of the Fisherman. In that novel a newly elected Slavic pope slips out of the Vatican to find out what is happening with ordinary people in his new diocese..." (for bilingual Mass of the Last Supper, April 21, 2011 - Holy Thursday)

The Blood of Martyrs and of Jesus "During the three year war, many priests were executed, mainly by government forces. The statistics are hard to imagine: 6,832 priests including 13 bishops..." (April 17, 2011 - Palm Sunday)

Revive "Perhaps you saw the 60 Minutes interview of Archbishop Dolan. The interviewer asked him about the clergy abuse scandal which seems to go on and on. Archbishop Dolan responded..." (April 10, 2011 - Fifth Sunday of Lent)

Sight "I knew about Charlie Sheen's troubles, but about my friend, I knew nothing...Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta said: 'I think the world today is upside down. We have no time for our children, we have no time for each other; there is no time to enjoy each other. In the home begins the disruption of the peace of the world.'" (April 3, 2011 - Fourth Sunday of Lent)

Thirst "St. Theresa of Avila wrote, 'Thirst expresses the desire for something, but a desire so intense that we would die if we lacked it.'" (March 27, 2011 - Third Sunday of Lent)

Sons of Abraham "Like Abraham we live in a prosperous society that takes prides in its technology. And, unfortunately, we also have a dark side: Even though we have become more sophisticated, we still practice form of child sacrifice..." (March 20, 2011 - Second Sunday of Lent)

The Purpose of Temptation "Once four priests were spending a couple of days at a cabin. In the evening they decided to tell each other their biggest temptation..." (March 13, 2011 - First Sunday of Lent)

The Purpose of Lent "What do we do during these forty days? What is the purpose of imitating Jesus' time in the desert? ..." (March 9, 2011 - Ash Wednesday)

Knowing Jesus - and Being Known by Him "Sometimes people will ask, 'If you died tonight, would you go to heaven?' That is good question, but to give a simple answer is tricky..." (March 6, 2011 - Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Only in God "A young man from North Africa tells about his search for meaning. At first he sought happiness in the pleasures of drinking, eating and sex..." (February 27, 2011 - Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Love "C.S. Lewis gave this description of what it means to love one's enemy: 'We must try to feel about the enemy as we feel about ourselves...'" (February 20, 2011 - Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

But I Say to You "In telling his followers to avoid vain desires, to concentrate on today and not fret about tomorrow, Jesus sounds very much like the Buddha. Buddha tried to show people a path to peace. Jesus likewise shows a path, but much more important: He is the path..." (February 13, 2011 - Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Kalos "Once a lady came to a priest. 'Father,' she said, 'I have a problem with vanity. I spend so much time in front of the mirror...'" (February 6, 2011 - Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

The Four Daughters of God "I'd like to begin by referring to one of the greatest sermons ever given. It was by the twelfth century preacher, Bernard of Clairvaux. The sermon has this intriguing title: The Four Daughters of God. They are..." (January 30, 2011 - Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Personal Responsibility and Solidarity "Since the tragic murder of six people in Tucson, we have heard a lot about individual and group responsibility. The Bible speaks about both..." (January 23, 2011 - Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Takes Away Sin "J. Budziszewski has written an insightful book titled The Revenge of Conscience. He shows that no matter how much we try to deny sin, conscience has ways of reasserting itself..." (January 16, 2011 - Second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A)

Seven Teachings about Baptism "Because of the importance of baptism, I would like to give a brief summary of our teaching regarding the sacrament..." (January 9, 2011 - Baptism of the Lord, Year A)

Science and God "In his commentary on St. Matthew's Gospel, William Barclay says, 'These Magi were men who were skilled in philosophy, medicine and natural science...'" (January 2, 2011 - Homily for Epiphany of Our Lord)

Thrive "We want to do more that survive. We want to thrive. We want the Church to thrive. That depends on us, on our response to God's grace...." (January 1, 2011 - Homily for New Year's Day)

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2010 Homilies

2009 Homilies

2008 Homilies

2007 Homilies

2006 Homilies

2005 Homilies

2004 Homilies

2003 Homilies

2002 Homilies

2001 Homilies

2000 Homilies

1999 Homilies

1998 Homilies

1997 Homilies

1995-96 Homilies

Homilies for Cycle A

Homilies for Cycle B

Homilies for Cycle C

Spanish Homilies

What is a Homily? (Four Purposes of the Catholic Homily)

EWTN Daily Scripture Readings and Homilies (Real Audio)

The Usual Homily (A Parody)

Wedding Homily

Homily for Quinceanera Mass

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