bride and groom

A Marriage “in the Church” not in a Church?

Fr. Joel Church meets World

“Father, can you officiate my backyard wedding?” I get these calls several times a year. “No, I’m not allowed to celebrate a wedding outside a Catholic Church,” I explain. One US Diocese is temporarily permitting priests to celebrate outdoor weddings. It’s a one year experiment in meeting people where they are at (in the backyard, apparently). I understand the importance of …

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The Trinity Is Our Identity and Our Mission | #829

Fr. Joel Homilies

Holy Trinity – The One God, Lord of the whole Universe, is also our God, a community of persons. Baptism invites us into God’s community of love. Live your life, and every moment, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

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The Key to Abundant Life Is Shaped Like a Cross (#738, 22nd Sunday)

Fr. Joel Homilies

Who wants to suffer, sacrifice, and die? But who wants to have abundant life? You duped us, Lord! It is only when we lay down our lives as a sacrifice that we discover abundant life. The key to abundant life is shaped like a cross. [AUDIO]

Photo by Richard Getchel

Want to Have it All? Then Give Yourself Away (#731, 13th Sunday)

Fr. Joel Homilies

Yesterday 5 men laid down their lives and were ordained priests. Getting stuff and holding on to it doesn’t really make us happy. Jesus teaches us that you are a gift that was made to be given away. Our King is not outdone in generosity. [AUDIO]

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Lay Down Your Life for the King (#617, Palm Sunday)

Fr. Joel Homilies

If you want to enter Jesus’ Kingdom, you must lay down your life before Him. The legend of the thorn bird reminds us that Jesus is singing his greatest song on the cross. Will you take time to stop and listen? Make this week a Holy Week. [AUDIO]

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Why Catholics Don’t Eat Meat on Fridays

Fr. Joel Being Catholic

Not really. The first Pope was actually a fisherman. But back then meat wasn’t a staple food. For most ancient peoples, “flesh meat” (birds and mamals) was a luxury enjoyed by the rich. The rest of the people only ate meat on special occasions. Abstinence from meat meant everyone had to eat like the poor.

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The Devil Is Sneaking Between You and God – Stop Him! (#611, Ash Wednesday)

Fr. Joel Homilies

We sacrifice because Jesus sacrificed his life for us. Lent is about realizing that the Devil has been distracting me from my relationship with God. Reach through the fears and distractions and reach for God. He’s already reaching for you. [AUDIO]