Tag Archives: Christmas Eve


To watch Fr. Joe’s homily for Christmas: CLICK HERE!

Have you ever wondered what the most popular verse in the Bible is?  (Hint: you’ve seen the biblical verse at times at professional sporting events!)

If you thought it’s John 3:16 you are correct my friend.  John 3:16 says, “God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son that we might have eternal life.”

Today on this Christmas 2018, we celebrate the love of God, we celebrate the birth of the Savior Jesus Christ, we celebrate the birth of our friend – Jesus Christ.

To use the title of a current TV show, God Friended Me, not just us, but each one of us, each one of you…

Ratings for God Friended Me are not the best, seems not many people are watching. This seemingly speaks to the culture of today that seems to see God as not really relevant to the lives we live, most of the time… How unfortunate…

The premise of God Friended Me is pretty good.  Miles, who is an Atheist, is at odds with his father who is a Minister.  Then one day, Miles’ life is turned upside down when he receives a friend request on social media from a user named “God.”  Eventually, he accepts and starts digging into his new friend’s account, convinced it is a hoax.  With some friends and partners, Miles devotes himself to uncovering the truth by playing along with the new found social media friend, “God,” but in the process, Miles begins to see his life changed forever.

I would like to suggest this Christmas 2018, we are being reminded that God has friended us, not only 2000 years ago, not only at our Baptisms… but every day and forever more.

And like all those people we have accepted as friends throughout the years and even on social media, friendship is a two way street.  We all need to keep our friendships current, growing and alive.

We all are aware of how life sometimes gets in the way of our friendships and other relationships at times, or more times than we would like to admit.

Just maybe this Christmas is requesting from us that we make an effort to give some time and effort to the relationships and friendships of life that we have with family and friends and with God, not now and then, but on a regular and consistent basis!

God and many people have “friended” us… May our friendships with God and others continue to change all our lives for the better and forever and ever AMEN.

Christmas Eve Vigil Mass

To watch Father Joe’s homily from the Christmas Eve Vigil Mass: CLICK HERE! 

Christmas can remind us of so many things and people.  Peace on Earth, lit trees, wrapped and unwrapped presents, red and green decorations, laughter with family and friends, and then a silent night of some 2000 years ago.

The words, “Be not afraid,” proclaimed to the Shepherds in today’s Gospel begs the question, “What is it that we should not be afraid of?”

The answer is quite simple… do not be afraid to love!

Do not be afraid to open our hearts to others, to forgive, to embrace the blessings God sends our way.

The Miracle of Christmas, the greatest act of love ever revealed to the world, involved a YES, when Jesus embraced His Father’s request that he become flesh and blood to save a broken world.

But what you and I celebrate as people of faith at Christmas is the reality that GOD is HERE, present among us, working within us, NOW.

So maybe this Christmas 2017, we might ask ourselves how will we allow the YES of Jesus, the YES of so many people of faith who have gone before us, to shape our lives so that the gift of Christmas is not forgotten or lost after a day or even a season.

Saying YES cannot be a one time act.  The love of God, the love of others, our love continues… love grows and keeps giving!

This Christmas, may we have the courage to chose love.  To resist the fear for opening our hearts to love Jesus, to say YES to the miracles that He places into small moments of every day.

May we never regret sharing God’s love with others, and may we be awed at the many blessing that will be showed upon us, not only at Christmas, but throughout our lives as person, family and people.

GOD is HERE, present among us; working within us, NOW.

Let the miracle of Christmas continue through our lives of faith, hope and love forever and ever, amen.

Christmas Mass

Scripture Readings:   Isaiah 9:1-6;     Titus 2:11-14;     Luke 2:1-14

“Once again, we come to the Holiday Season, a deeply religious time that each of us observes, in his own way, by going to the mall of his choice.” – Says humorist: Dave Barry.

Obviously, Christmas is not as much about opening our presents as opening our hearts to the greatest gift:  Jesus.

Christmas is about God’s love for all people; Christmas is about the Word of God coming to life in Jesus.

Someone shared in recent days, that we need to celebrate Christmas every year, lest we forget our need for God in our lives, lest we forget that God does come into our lives every day – not just at Christmas.

Pope Francis in recent days shared that, “God passes into our lives often, God sends angels to us, yet often we miss the opportunity for grace because we are too preoccupied, immersed in our thoughts, in our affairs and so much more, to realize that Jesus knocks at the door of our heart, asking for welcome.

How do we know Lord wants to come into our lives as a person, family and parish?

When we feel or say to ourselves:  I want to be a better person;  I am sorry for what I said or did; I want to be closer to others; I want to be closer to God… This is the Lord wanting to come into our lives.

Says Pope Francis, “please do not let the Lord pass by;   welcome him into your life.  Make room for the Lord in your life every day.”

Deep within everyone is the desire to share gifts with others and whether your shopping is done or you are waiting for the after Christmas sales to buy your gifts, let me end with some Christmas gift suggestions:

  • To your enemy – give forgiveness
  • To an opponent – give tolerance
  • To a friend – give your heart
  • To a customer – give service
  • To all – give charity
  • To every child – give a good example
  • To yourself – give respect

May we open the doors of our hearts and lives to Christ, this Christmas and every day of our graced lives!