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24

In this section of his Gospel, Matthew is on a roll with parables.  But when you stop and think about, that’s how you and I grow up.  And I don’t mean growing up from a baby to a teen-ager to an adult; by growing up it means we are all on a journey of life and every experience counts.  Our goal is that one day we want to be with Heaven, and Jesus is simply saying,  “In order for that to happen, I gave you a free will and so there will always be the wheat and the weeds.”

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30

If we keep saying over and over,  “Yes, Lord.  Yes, Lord. Yes, yes, Lord,” then Jesus will say, “You do have the message.  It’s not only on your lips but it’s in your heart.

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22

When we hear the words “Body of Christ,” what do we think about?  Do we think about the Eucharist? 

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17

Sometimes you can ask a person, “Do you believe in God?”

 

And the response is, “Yes, I do.  John 3:16”

 

“Oh, come on.  Do you really believe in God?  Do you feel God?  Do you know love?  Do you experience life to the fullest?”

 

“Awe, …  sometimes.”

 

But today we are learning that the Father, Son and the Holy Spirit are saying to us,  “It’s not a sometimes thing.  It’s not quoting a chapter. “ 

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09

There is always a before and there is always an after, isn’t there? Single life — married life,  single life — priesthood,  college work — job, promotions — transfers. Well, we find the same thing in several instances in the Bible.

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03

This morning we celebrate the Feast of the Ascension. Traditionally, the Ascension takes place 40 days after Easter and hence the term Ascension Thursday.  In most of the dioceses in the United Sates we transfer that feast from last Thursday to the weekend because it is an important feast we need to know more about. 

 

So what is the Ascension?  

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27

In the history of our faith we started out with more than 600 commandments.  Then when Moses brought the commandments to us we got down to 10.  When Jesus got to us, he brought it down to two.   So Jesus is really hitting at the very core of what is going to make this whole thing work — this kingdom that has all kinds of division, where people don’t speak to each other, they kill each other, they fight one another, and they don’t even love themselves.  They drink themselves to death, they take drugs and die, they commit suicide, they don’t have success.  Jesus says, “You know, in the midst of all of that, the thing that binds it all together is love.”

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27

It is good to be home.  It is always a pleasure and joy for me to come back here.  I wish I could stay here forever, but I have business to take care of.  So, I want to say a big thank you to Father, and to all of you who came all of the way to Springfield, the contingent who represented all of the parish community, to support us last Saturday.  We are grateful.

We are thankful for your prayers and support.  But it is not over yet. Right?  Until I am sitting where Father Mike is sitting it is not over until it is over.  So, keep on praying for us.  If not, anything can happen.

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14

What a wonderful thing the mercy of God is!  We can make horrible decisions, straying from what we know is right, straying from what God calls us to; yet, He will continue to call us back to Him and will welcome us back to Him when we return.  

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07

This passage has always intrigued me.  When I had the privilege some years ago to be able to travel to the Holy Land, the one place I wanted to visit was Emmaus.  We were seeing all the sights and I finally asked the guide, “Are we ever going to see Emmaus?”

And he said, “Oh, yes.”

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