More than many Sparrows

A number of years ago I worked in Oxford Street in Top shop. I was working in the exchange and refund department. I was suprized by the amount of people that used fashion to hide who they really were. The one thing that they would say quite a lot was that they shopped and brought clothes to make them selves feel better. Now this is not a homily against retail therapy or against fashion shops but I have to say I met a lot of people that used this and other things to get over the pain that they did not either like themselves and therefore feel love of another person. 
It is true to say that there are many times in our lives where we are afraid to be our true authentic selves. We hide behind the masks that we portray. We are one thing to one person and another to someone else. We try our best and hardest to try and please everyone where we almost become like a camelion. I suppose the question I have is why do we do this. Why do we waste so much energy trying to be all things to all people…

You are the Body of Christ.

The Body and Blood of Christ

Todays Gospel comes from John Chapter 6. It is the great Eucharistic discourse. It reminds us who are listening what actually is happening when we receive communion at Mass. For what we do is fulfil the command that Jesus himself gave us at the last supper that we take and eat and take and drink. “Do this in memory of me” When we listen to the language of the Gospel we get clues to what actually is happening. Jesus uses the words “I AM” if you remember this comes from the book of Exodus where Moses asks the voice at the burning bush who is speaking to him. “I AM who I AM” it is God himself that we are receiving therefore. It is the miracle of the Mass that on this altar God himself is present. 
Taking all this into account it is something that is quite amazing. It is something that we should take into consideration when we come into the Church or at mass that we are in the presence of God in a very real way. So what we do in the Church how we present ourselv…

Come Holy Spirit

What struck me the most about the feast of Pentecost this year was that the Disciples changed when they were given the gift of the Holy Spirit. They were practically scared of everything even their own shadow. They had witnessed such dramatic events that they maybe could not fully comprehend them. They had seen the death and resurrection of the person that they were going to follow they had been promised that he would remain with them always just to be told that he was going back to his Father. What was this gift? What would it do? How would it affect them? We can see from the readings that it did a lot they were no longer scared the shackles of fear had been broken and they were able to proclaim Jesus to all those who had gathered for the feast of Pentecost.

The disciples were changed they are able to proclaim Christ they were no longer scared of the past or the future and were able to tell others about it. The change in them was the gift of the Holy Spirit. They were able to see a wa…

The Blessed Sacrament and me

On a recent trip to see a friend of mine I visited Crawley where he lives.  I will not bore you with the details of the trip although just to say that it was really good to see my friend. As it is with me I had a bit of time to spare and so I decided to look around the town centre. Maybe it was the time of day or the weather but as I walked around the shops I got more and more depressed. The place seemed soulless. The people had sullen faces and there seemed to in lots of peoples faces little hope. I felt there must be more to this place. I decided to go to the Catholic Church and was pleased to discover that the Church was open and that there was people in prayer. There was also a great joy to behold and that my dear Lord in the Blessed sacrament not just in the tabernacle but they were engaged in exposition. 

I was firstly very happy to see the Church open and then thanked God for the gift of himself in the Blessed Sacrament and that he was on the Altar. I sat and knelt to pray reali…

Lenten Diary updated throughout the Season.

This year Lent started with Mass at Mayfield girls school. The sea of faces that stood infront of me reminded me that we all approach this season differently. Some people do the same thing every year like some sort of ritual that never changes with age or circumstance, others try and do too much and so stumble after the first Sunday of Lent. Others try and do something different and therefore challenge themselves to do something extra helping or in prayer. Whatever we do Lent is about getting closer to the one who made us and loves us. It is a time to look at ourselves and our relationship with God.

Deciding what to do should not be so taxing that we fail very quickly but it should also not be so easy that it does not impact on our lives. Also it should be something that changes us not just for the of lent but for the whole of our lives. A simple example of this is that I gave up sugar in Coffee and tea and never went back to it at the end of the lent. There is another danger in lent …

Advent Hope

A few years ago, I made a trip to Krakow and made a special trip to the Concentration Camps Auschwitz-Birkenau. The feeling as you went around the places and looked in horror at man’s inhumanity to man it felt like a place of little or no hope. In fact, one of the survivors said that God had forgotten this place and those who were held there. Amongst the corridor and cells there was one I particularly wanted to see and pray at. It was the cell of a Catholic Franciscan Priest Maximilian Kolbe. As we approached there was a candle in the cell. In this cell, he privately said Mass with the scraps of bread that he managed to get. He prayed with people around him and at the end he took the place of a married man with children and was killed instead of this other man. During this horrific human misery, he brought hope to people.
 This idea of hope when all looks hopeless in a strong message in the readings today. In the first reading, today from Isaiah we get this ideal picture of what the Me…

Tumped!!! Feast of Christ the King

Watching the Election from America we see that Donald Trump is set to be the most powerful man in the world. He if you like is the modern King. He has been one of the most controversial choices in history but if we look at this new kind of kingship we see that it is one of power and wealth that it does not matter who they tread on or upset. It is one that is very different from the Kingship of Jesus. But when we look at the modern day Kings like Trump you can see that people do get very confused.  So how is Jesus Kingship different?
Let us look at the Readings today and we can get clues of how different it actually is. First of all we have the idea of this King being a shepherd. A shepherd in the Old Testament was not a shepherd like we know. The Shepherd today leads from the back pushing his sheep forward. In the time of the Bible the Shepherd lead from the front and the sheep knew the voice of their master. When in John's Gospel Jesus says that the good shepherd is the gatekeepe…