The Cross of Discipleship

by Fr. Kilian McCaffrey  |  08/31/2023  |  Pastor's Letter

We continue our journey through the heart of Matthew’s Gospel and move into a theme that’s very prominent in the teaching of Jesus: the cost of following Jesus Christ and the mystery of serving, suffering and The Cross. So, the Gospel this week is Matthew 16:21- 27. What does this lead up to? Well, the Last Judgment parable in Matthew, Chapter 25.

“For the Son of man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay every man according to what he has done.”

As we mark Labor Day this year, yes, there is much work to be done.


Anyone Who Loses His Life For My Sake WIll Find It

by Fr. Williams Abba  |  08/31/2023  |  Images of Faith

Today’s first reading opens with a dramatic accusation: the prophet Jeremiah accuses God of seducing him into becoming a prophet and deceiving him about the personal suffering his mission would involve. Throughout his prophetic ministry, from about 628 to about 580 B. C., Jeremiah appears the most plaintive and heartbroken of all the prophets. He is burdened by a ministry he does not want and pained by the hostility of his own people, which he deeply resents. He is commissioned to tell the people of Judah and Jerusalem that their sins have earned them defeat and exile. He warns them that God’s help is not automatic, that they might as well surrender to the invading Babylonian armies, because God will not help them.


Twenty-first Sunday In Ordinary Time

by Fr. Kilian McCaffrey  |  08/24/2023  |  Pastor's Letter

Simon Peter said in reply: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” “The Keys of Peter Sunday” should be the name of this Sunday. It marks the handing over of the keys to the kingdom of heaven, which represent Authority in the Church and the Kingdom.

I would like to think that when we reach the gates of heaven, we will meet St. Peter, and he will have some questions for us. They won’t be difficult or trick questions. However, they will evaluate us on whether we have lived our faith while in this world. In other words, St. Peter will want to know if we were listening and attentive, and if we learned anything about the Kingdom of Heaven.


Miracle Sunday

by Deacon Bill Schneider  |  08/17/2023  |  Images of Faith

The miracle stories hold a special fascination for all of us. They tell us about the mercy, the compassion and the love of our God for all that He has created. They show us the power and providence, the care and concern of a loving Father. Miracles always announce a new age in the history of our world: that God’s kingdom is both here and yet to come. But there is even more. We need to look beyond the miracle story to see and understand what that kingdom is all about.


Twentieth Sunday In Ordinary Time

by Fr. Kilian McCaffrey  |  08/17/2023  |  Pastor's Letter

“O Woman, great is your faith.”

A little teaching first: the Hypostatic Union is a theological term used with the Incarnation to explain the revealed truth that Christ’s one divine person subsists in two natures. Simply stated, this means that in the Person of Jesus there are two natures: divinity and humanity, and they are in complete unity without any mixture, change, division or separation, as the great Council of Chalcedon stated. So, Jesus Christ is both God and Man. This is a great mystery; hypostasis (upostasis) means, literally, that which lies beneath as the basis or foundation.


The Sound of Silence

by Deacon Jeff Strom  |  08/10/2023  |  Images of Faith

In the first reading from 1 Kings 19, Elijah waited for the Lord’s passing by a Mt. Horeb cave. The Lord was not in the strong, heavy wind, in an earthquake, or in a fire, but Elijah heard the Lord in a tiny whispering sound. Silence is critical for our time invested in contemplative prayer to hear that still, small voice, whether right then or later, as the saints teach us. The holy, miracle-working priest and monk, St. Charbel, invested eight hours each day in silent adoration prayer. There is a shrine to him and a monthly healing Mass right here in Phoenix.


Take Courage, It Is I; Do Not Be Afraid

by Fr. Kilian McCaffrey  |  08/10/2023  |  Pastor's Letter

The last time I was at the Sea of Galilee, on top the mountain of the Beatitudes overlooking Tabgha, the place where Jesus miraculously fed the Five Thousand, we watched as a big storm brewed up from the south side of the Jordan River valley and was headed north and right toward us. Our tour guide was already on the phone to the boat operator to cancel our Holy Hour on the Sea scheduled for later that night. The weather forecast was talking in terms of a ‘hurricane’ blowing in from the Mediterranean Sea, then making landfall and then heading north as it so often does. All of the pilgrim and pleasure trips scheduled on the lake later that evening were cancelled.


The Transfiguration of the Lord: A Spectacular Revelation!

by Fr. Kilian McCaffrey  |  08/03/2023  |  Pastor's Letter

This great Feast of The Transfiguration of the Lord is one of my favorite feasts. The Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit all together in one place, just as they were at the Baptism of the Lord. The relatively new Luminous Mysteries of the Holy Rosary, like “The Chosen” television episodes, have given much attention to the life and ministry of Christ. The first time I visited the Holy Land in 2014, the place I wanted to visit the most was Mount Tabor, the mountain of the Transfiguration.


The Feast of the Transfiguration

by Larry Fraher, Ph.D  |  08/03/2023  |  Images of Faith

Once every few years, the Church hears the gospel of the Transfiguration twice on different Sundays. Every year we hear it on the Second Sunday of Lent; and when the Feast of the Transfiguration (August 6) falls on a Sunday, it takes precedence over the regular Sunday readings.

Raphael’s image of the Transfiguration is one of the most popular paintings of this gospel. In it, the great master presents viewers with real-life questions about what one chooses to emphasize in life. The image was commissioned by Cardinal Giulio de Medici (who would become Pope Clement VII) as an altarpiece for his home chapel in late 1516 or early 1517.