Friday, November 25, 2016

Sunday Sermon, November 20 -- Three Responses to Mercy: The ruler, the wicked thief, and the good thief (Father Ryan Erlenbush, Corpus Christi Parish)

Sunday Sermon, November 20 -- Solemnity of Christ the King.

The conclusion to the Year of Mercy is today. Christ is the King of Mercy, and we see three responses to mercy: The ruler, the wicked thief and the good thief.

The ruler doesn't think he needs mercy. He rejects Jesus' teaching, and especially hates the Gospel for not being popular with the worldly. He symbolizes those today who don't think they have any sins, who don't go to confession, who think that the Church needs to "get with the times".

The wicked thief desires mercy, but sees mercy as a license for sin. He wants mercy as a way of escaping punishment, but not as a remedy for sin. He symbolized those today who say that mercy means giving communion to the divorced and remarried, and who don't want any consequence for sin.

The good thief accepts punishment as just, but hopes for something more. He desires mercy not as a way of avoiding justice, but as doing what justice alone could never do. Justice punishes sin, but mercy totally annihilates sin by bringing about true conversion. He symbolizes the one who experiences the grace of repentance and confesses his sin and truly strives to follow the Gospel.

The good thief reminds us that it is never too late to become a saint.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Daily Sermons, November 15-19 (Father Ryan Erlenbush, Corpus Christi)

Sermons from daily Masses, November 15-19.
St Albert, St Gertrude, St Elizabeth, Sts Peter and Paul.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Sunday Sermon, November 13 -- The Destruction of Jerusalem and the Day of Judgment (Father Ryan Erlenbush, Corpus Christi)

Sunday Sermon, 33rd Sunday of Ordinary Time.

In the year AD 66, St Simeon, the second bishop of Jerusalem, led the Christians out of the city of Jerusalem before the soon-to-be emperor Titus destroyed the city in 70 AD. Yet, God was merciful, for the Christians returned to perform works of charity after Titus left the city in ruins.

Jesus doesn't want us to be afraid of the day of Judgment. His second coming isn't a threat, it's a promise. If we are afraid of the Lord's return, either we need to recall his love or recognize that it is our lowliness and our misery call upon our mercy.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Daily Sermons, November 9-12 (Father Ryan Erlenbush, Corpus Christi Parish)

Daily homilies, November 9 through 12.
Worship, St Leo, St Martin, Monothelitism.

Daily Sermons, October 25-28 (Father Ryan Erlenbush, Corpus Christi)

Sermons from daily homilies, October 25 to 28.
Marriage, St Evaristus, St Frumentius, Sts Simon and Jude.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Sunday Sermon, November 6th -- Why the Church is still against cremation (Father Ryan Erlenbush, Corpus Christi)

Sunday Sermon, November 6th -- What the Church really teaches about cremation, and why she still strongly discourages the practice and desires full body burial.

From the Code of Canon Law:

"The Church earnestly recommends that the pious custom of burying the bodies of the deceased be observed; nevertheless, the Church does not prohibit cremation unless it was chosen for reasons contrary to Christian doctrine." (Canon 1176.3)

From the official liturgical book of the Church, on cremation (Order of Christian Funerals, Appendix):

"The human body is inextricably associated with the human person … Although cremation is now permitted by the Church, it does not enjoy the same value as burial of the body. The Church clearly prefers and urges that the body of the deceased be present for the funeral rites … The Church's teaching in regard to the human body as well as the Church's preference for burial of the body should be a regular part of catechesis on all levels and pastors should make particular efforts to preserve this important teaching." (411, 413, 414) The document continues to speak of cremation as "extraordinary" and as to be chosen when it is "the only feasible choice". (415)

There are real circumstances in which cremation would be appropriate (examples: when the body will be buried in a place far distant from the place of death; times of war or plague; when there is not sufficient cemetery space for burial), but the Church does not desire that we would choose cremation as a first option, nor does she place cremation as a good choice. The Church does not want us to be cremated, whenever full body burial is a viable option.

Many chose cremation so as to cut funeral costs - there are many ways to avoid an expensive funeral. The law does not require embalming (in most cases) and we can certainly opt for a pine box rather than an expensive casket. Don't let the funeral home or societal pressures force you to chose something that the Church has always forbidden and still strongly discourages. Educate yourself about options available for the preparation of the body for burial (a simple google search will reveal a great many options).

Sunday Sermon, October 30th -- The Rosary with St Joseph, Sorrowful and Glorious Mysteries, Part 5 of 5 (Father Ryan Erlenbush, Corpus Christi)

Sunday Sermon, October 30th -- The conclusion of sermons on the Rosary with St Joseph, the Sorrowful and Glorious Mysteries.

St Joseph witnessed the sorrowful mysteries from limbo, and felt deep compassion and sorrow as in a father's heart.

At the Resurrection of Jesus, St Joseph also rose. When the Lord ascended, St Joseph was assumed. The Patron of the Universal Church witnessed the remaining mysteries from heavenly glory.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Daily Sermons, November 2 - 5 (Father Ryan Erlenbush, Corpus Christi)

Daily Sermons, November 2-5.
Requiem Masses and the Souls in Purgatory.

Holy Day Sermon, November 1st -- All Saints' Day -- Indulgences Explained (Father Ryan Erlenbush, Corpus Christi)

In the Catholic Church, we are united to the saints in heaven and the souls in purgatory as one great family in Christ. This is the essential truth that is proposed in the doctrine of indulgences - that the merits of the stronger members of our Catholic family (the saints) benefit the weaker members (us). Furthermore, we can assist the holy souls in purgatory by offering indulgences for them.