Most of us reacted in horror to the murder of six young people here in Seattle. For many it revealed a world they did not know existed where girls in their early teens and adult men are together in all night parties, often with alcohol and drugs. During the week they use the Internet to post provocative messages and pictures of themselves which anyone can access. Our young people at Holy Family are not unaffected by this world. This tragedy is a wake-up call. We have got to be more involved with our children, give them the right kind of guidance - and above all, we've got to pray. This is a spiritual battle. It was not some material need which drove that young man to kill six people then commit suicide. It was not a material need; something was lacking in his soul. The issue is spiritual and we are in a spiritual battle.
We see the spiritual battle lived out most dramatically during Holy Week. We just listened to St. Mark's account of the Passion. For us Christians this is the most important event within human history - the day Jesus bore our sins to Calvary. For us Catholics this is not just a past event, but something we experience every time we come to Mass. Have you noticed how the priest always consecrates the bread and wine separately? The bread becomes Jesus' Body and the wine his Precious Blood. When the blood is separated from the body, that means death. Coming to Mass is like standing at the foot of the cross, while Jesus' Blood is poured out for us. We do not stand alone. We join the Blessed Mother, St. Mary Magdalene and John, the beloved disciple, as well as all the angels and saints.
Do not be afraid of the cross. The sufferings it reflects are of course fearful, but we know that by his passion Jesus has won the great battle. Victory already belongs to us. The cross contains everything you need: forgiveness, healing, strength, life, courage, power, freedom. During Holy Week please draw close to the cross of Christ. On Good Friday we will solemnly venerate the wood on which our Savior hung. The evening before, Holy Thursday, we commemorate a meal that we heard described at the beginning of the Passion. Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it saying, "This is my Body." Likewise, offering the cup of wine, he said, "This is my Blood." On Holy Saturday our Church will be empty as we await the Resurrection. I invite you to come that day for the beautiful custom of extending condolences to the Blessed Mother. Also that day priests will be available for the Sacrament of Reconciliation. I encourage you to make a good confession before Easter. That confession will fulfill one of the requirements of the Divine Mercy Novena which takes place between Good Friday and the Sunday after Easter, Divine Mercy Sunday.
Do not miss the great blessings which God wishes to give you and your family during these days. You are invited to not only hear what Jesus did for you, but to personally participate in these great events.
Seapadre Homilies: Cycle A, Cycle B, Cycle C
Audio Files of Homilies (Simple Catholicism Blog)
Bulletin (Welcome to Holy Week!)
Michael Savage demonstrates right wing machismo by attacking Hispanic immigrants and the Catholic Church...and then cancelling his interview with Bill Donohue. As we used to say in grade school, "pock, pock, pock."
April 2, 2006, after First Anniversary Mass for Julius Jacob & Sara Bloom, with Mike & Linda Bloom, Fr. Dominic & Sarah Fox:
Palm Sunday 2006, Deacon Abel Magana with Monstrance, Fr. Phil Bloom:
my bulletin column
Parish Picture Album - April 2011
40 Days for Life (Everett, WA)
Q&A about Planned Parenthood
Another sting by Live Action: Planned Parenthood CEO’s False Mammogram Claim Exposed
Reasons Young People Leave Their Faith - Presentation for Monroe Christian Pastor. (For pdf format click here)
Background for presentation on "Reasons Young People Leave Their Faith": High School Course – World Civilization - Section on origins of Christianity. (For pdf format click here)
Parish Picture Album
Laetare Sunday: the old & the new (March 2012)
Al Kresta at Rally for Religious Freedom: "We want this to be an enduring victory for American religious liberty...The way we ensure this does not become a political tempest in a teapot: Psalm 51 'Create in me a clean heart, O God..."
Please take time to read what our bishops are saying about Religious Liberty & Conscience Protection
The Archdiocese of Seattle also has helpful resources regarding the defense of marriage and family
Bulletin (St. Mary's Parish)
Are these homilies a help to you? Please consider making a donation to St. Mary of the Valley Parish
Parish Picture Album
(view slide show of Men's Conference Volunteers)
MBC - Mary Bloom Center, Puno, Peru
(new, professional website)
photos of Diego
(teenager with eye disease helped by Mary Bloom Center)