As a kid growing up, I never looked forward to the season of Lent. In preparing for these 40 days of prayer, fasting and almsgiving, my family would constantly ask me, “What are you giving up for Lent?”
Just a few years ago, I had the tremendous joy and privilege of leading a pilgrimage to Lourdes, France. It was a pilgrimage that I was very much looking forward to.
As a kid growing up, I had a deep fascination with famous people. Whether they were actors, singers or sports stars, if I saw them on television, then they were famous!
While the Church has not formally approved the apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary said to be occurring for roughly 40 years in Medjugorje, there is no denying this village in Bosnia and Herzegovina is a place of great faith.
I am always on the hunt for interesting things to show my confirmation class, so just last week I was thrilled when, looking up a video I could present on the baptism of the Lord on the last day of the Christmas season, my online search led me to an informative documentary series on belief in God presented by one of my favorite actors, Morgan Freeman.
Whoever said the Holy Mass doesn’t come straight from the Bible? Today’s Gospel from John includes five words right out of the mouth of John the Baptist, words that the faithful hear every time the Eucharist is celebrated: “Behold the Lamb of God.”
Television shows of the late 1950s and early 1960s certainly gave my generation a definite image of what it meant to be a family.
Liturgically, today offers us the “once every six years because of leap year” combination of the Fourth Sunday of Advent and Christmas Eve occurring on the same day. Today’s Gospel, St. Luke’s narrative on the Annunciation, finds its nine-months-later fulfillment in the proclamation of the Birth of Christ that we will hear in just a few hours.
Upon entering most of our Catholic schools and academies, a visitor will see a sign on the wall that reads, “Let it be known to all who enter here that Jesus Christ is the reason for this school, the unseen but ever present teacher in all its classes, the model of its faculty, and the inspiration for its students.”
Many of the men who studied at Cathedral College in Douglaston during the late 1960’s and ’70’s will recognize the speech teacher I am thinking of.