The Ways of Prayer
by Bishop Robert Barron . July 25, 2004 .
The Bible speaks often of prayer, that intimate communion and conversation with God. Our readings for this Sunday present, if I can put it this way, the rules of prayer. First, we must pray with faith and confidence; secondly, our prayer must be accompanied by forgiveness; thirdly, we must pray with persistence, and finally, we must pray in the name of Jesus the Lord. Why does our prayer not "work?" Perhaps it's because we are not following the rules.
The One Thing Necessary
by Bishop Robert Barron . July 18, 2004 .
Both our first reading and Gospel for this week speak of the importance of keeping our attention riveted on God. The three angels visit Abraham, and he drops everything in order to receive them with hospitality; Jesus comes to her home, and Mary sits at his feet, listening to his words. When God is the absolute priority in our lives, everything else that we are worried about about falls into place. Augustine said, "love God and do what you want." This implies that once God is the unambiguous center of our lives, we can confidently arrange and respond to all of our particular concerns.
A Portrait of the Church
by Bishop Robert Barron . July 4, 2004 .
Our Gospel reading for this Sunday is the account of Jesus' sending of the seventy-two disciples. In the instructions he gives them, we can discern an outline of the life and work of the Church down through the ages. At our best, we are missionary church, empowered by prayer, marked by simplicity of life, bearing health and salvation, and proclaiming the reign of God.
Come, Holy Spirit
by Bishop Robert Barron . May 30, 2004 .
The two great symbols of the descent of the Holy Spirit are wind and tongues of fire. Wind is powerful, unpredictable, destructive, like the Spirit which seizes us and takes us where we would rather not go. Tongues of fire signal impassioned speech on behalf of the Good News, a willingness to announce the Gospel publicly and even in the face of opposition. With the whole church around the world, we pray on this great feast of Pentecost for the coming of that troublesome and wonderful Holy Spirit.
Four Reasons to Love Your Enemies
by Bishop Robert Barron . February 22, 2004 .
One of the most challenging and disconcerting of Jesus' commands is to love our enemies. In this sermon, I will explore four reasons why this moral demand makes sense. First, it helps us to test the quality of our love; second, it tells us a great deal about ourselves; third, it makes us see that sometimes our enemies might be right; and fourth, it allows us sometimes to win our enemy back.
John Paul the Great
by Bishop Robert Barron . November 9, 2003 .
On this feast of the dedication of St. John Lateran Basilica, I would like to focus on the extraordinary man who has occupied the seat at John Lateran these past twenty-five years: Karol Wojtyła. The papacy of John Paul II is extraordinary not simply in its length but in its breadth and depth. I can hardly begin to do justice to the Pope’s achievements, so I will limit myself to reflecting on three elements of his papacy and person.
Commemorating the Faithful Departed
by Bishop Robert Barron . November 2, 2003 .
The Catholic Faith inculcates in us a deep sense of our connection to the dead. They are present to us in memory of course, but also through their prayer, guidance and loving concern. We too pray for them inasmuch as they stand in need of purification before being ready to share fully the divine life. This co-inherence between us the living and the holy souls is what we celebrate on All Souls Day.
by Bishop Robert Barron . November 10, 2002 .
We hear today the parable of the five wise and five foolish virgins. The former are ready for the bridegroom when he comes; the latter are not. We have no idea when Christ will come to gather us to himself: so we must be ready--through prayer, the sacraments, and forgiveness.
The Witty Response
by Bishop Robert Barron . August 18, 2002 .
The Syro-Phoenicean woman stands for all those who are marginalized, ostracized, ignored, set aside. Through her persistance and cleverness, she obtains what she wants from Jesus. The Church must be that body of people who listen to the persistant cries of the poor and the forgotten.
Life in the Spirit: Prophets, Apostles, Evangelists, Pastors
by Bishop Robert Barron . May 12, 2002 .
In his letter to the Ephesians, Paul specifies some of the great charismatic offices, including prophets who boldly speak the word, apostles who establish churches, evangelists who draw others to Christ, and pastors who order and manage the community of the faithful. Which office is yours?