Necessary to Undergo Many Hardships

(Homily for Fifth Sunday of Easter, Year C)

St. Paul tells us we must undergo many hardships in order to enter the Kingdom of God. (Acts 14:22) A Capuchin priest recently gave testimony to this truth. Some of you have heard of him – Fr. Benedict Groeschel. On January 11 a car struck him, throwing him about ten yards. Sustaining multiple injuries, he spent nearly two months on a respirator. A reporter asked him what it was like. Fr. Groeschel responded:

“Of course it was not pleasant, the suffering. But what I decided to do, since I knew I was going to be silent for a month, was that I would make a rosary retreat. So I said the rosary many times every day, meditating on the mysteries. The mysteries that became the most meaningful to me were the Resurrection and the Coronation of Our Blessed Mother.”

He later mentioned that he had seen an early screening of The Passion of The Christ. It had helped prepare him to face his ordeal. Fr. Groeschel said: “There wasn’t one suffering possible that Our Lord missed. All suffering seemed to come to crescendo in that event, and why should I be different?”

Love necessarily involves suffering. All of us know that. A person who deeply loves someone else is willing to suffer much for that other person. We see it especially as we celebrate Mother’s Day. Almost everyone is certain of their mother’s love. Why? She has suffered for her child: In pregnancy, at birth, then in all that was involved during the early years of care - and the later years of letting go.

In these days between Easter and the Ascension, we hear Jesus tell us that he will only be with us a little while longer, but that he gives us a new commandment: Love one another as I have loved you. (Jn 13:34) We honor our mothers who, by their sufferings, have shown that love.


Spanish Version

From Archives (Fifth Sunday of Easter, Cycle C):

2016: Third Priority
2013: The Greatest Good
2010: Some Say Love
2007: They Appointed Elders
2004: Necessary to Undergo Many Hardships
2001: Love One Another
1998: Honoring Mothers and Defending Children

Other Homilies

Seapadre Homilies: Cycle A, Cycle B, Cycle C

Audio Files of Homilies (Simple Catholicism Blog)

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(April 2013)

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MBC - Mary Bloom Center, Puno, Peru

From Matthew at Creative Minority Report: "the attacks continue on the Church by the media which reports decades old abuse claims as new news..."

Also, Mark Shea on Transparency and Facing the Truth

And this from Bill Donohoe

Arizona Catholic bishops on immigration bill: The bishops stated that "Anything that may deter crimes from being reported or prosecuted will only keep dangerous criminals on the streets, making our communities less safe, "especially since “the present language of these bills does not clearly state that undocumented persons who become victims of crime can come forward without fear of deportation."

Bulletin (Fasting for Immigration Reform, Confused Vandals Strike Parish, Room for St. Michael & Sacred Heart)

Ob-gyn Dr. Mary Martin: a Catholic priest in the Confessional made it her penance to research whether contraceptive agents could cause abortions.


Bulletin (Mother's Day, Mother Gamelin, Highlights of Confirmation)


Carl Olsen on Nos. 1 and 2 New York Times Bestselling Books:

When people say (and they are saying it), "The Da Vinci Code is the greatest thing I've ever read," you have to wonder: What have they read? Cereal boxes?

Assault on Terri Schiavo Continues

Dave Morrison comments on Bishop Olmstead's Letter to Dissident Priests

“Why do you hate us?” - My impressions of Seattle's Mayday for Marriage Rally

Meanwhile: Pro-Life Women Forcibly Dragged From John Kerry Abortion Rally

Amy Welborn gets a mention in the Telegraph

Pictures from Confirmation (April 28, 2004; Holy Family Parish)