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Where would we be without the witness of our consecrated women and men?

Father Timothy Hepner

By Father Timothy Hepner Presentation of the Lord / Feb. 2 Malachi 3:1-4; Psalm 24:7,8,9,10; Hebrews 2:14-18; Luke 2:22-40 “What would become of the world if there were no religious?” asked St. Teresa of Avila. To which I add, “What would become of the Diocese of Peoria if there were no religious?” We would not have […]

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John the Baptist’s mysterious declaration

Father Timothy Hepner

By Father Timothy Hepner Second Sunday in Ordinary Time/Jan. 19 Isaiah 49:3,5-6; Psalm 40:2,4,7-8,8-9,10; 1 Corinthians 1:1-3; John 1:29-34 Do you know what an earworm is? It’s a catchy song that “worms” its way into your ear and seems to lodge itself in your brain, playing over and over again. “Don’t Stop Believing.” “Bohemian Rhapsody.” “Call […]

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Our true ‘star’ leads us not simply to worship but also to sacrificial love

Father Timothy Hepner

By Father Timothy Hepner Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord/Jan. 5 Isaiah 60:1-6; Psalm 72:1-2,7-8,10-11,12-13; Ephesians 3:2-3a,5-6; Matthew 2:1-12 What were the magi following? What shiny things do you and I follow out of the comfort of our own familiar surroundings? It is very important to ask what attracts and distracts us because that will […]

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God’s light shines, the darkness retreats

Shawn Reeves

By Shawn Reeves Nativity of the Lord/Dec. 25 At the Vigil Mass: Isaiah 62:1-5; Psalm 89:4-5,16-17,27,29; Acts 13:16-17,22-25; Matthew 1:1-25 Mass During the Night: Isaiah 9:1-6; Psalm 96:1-2,2-3,11-12,13; Titus 2:11-14; Luke 2:1-14 Mass at Dawn: Isaiah 62:11-12; Psalm 97:1,6,11-12; Titus 3:4-7; Luke 2:15-20 Mass During the Day: Isaiah 52:7-10; Psalm 98:1,2-3,3-4,5-6; Hebrews 1:1-6; John 1:1-18 Darkness spills over the world as autumn comes to a close and winter looms, crowding […]

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Choose a glorious life in God’s will

Shawn Reeves

By Shawn Reeves Fourth Sunday of Advent/Dec. 22 Isaiah 7:10-14; Psalm 24:1-2,3-4,5-6; Romans 1:1-7; Matthew 1:18-24 There is a saying — “death is inconvenient.” It comes suddenly and alters all the patterns of our experience. But life, also, is often inconvenient. Doctor visits need to be scheduled. The home needs to be prepared. Car seats need […]

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Advent: reflect in joy and anticipation

Shawn Reeves

By Shawn Reeves Second Sunday of Advent/Dec. 8 Isaiah 11:1-10; Psalm 72:1-2,7-8,12-13,17; Romans 15:4-9; Matthew 3:1-12 The practice of balance is often associated with Eastern mysticism. The principle of the body and mind poised in disciplined equilibrium pervades our culture’s impression of an Eastern approach to life, tethered to images of meditating Buddhist monks and resolute […]

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In God’s beloved Son, we are given a ‘better and more satisfying kingdom’

Shawn Reeves

By Shawn Reeves Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe/Nov. 24 2 Samuel 5:1-3; Psalm 122:1-2,3-4,4-5; Colossians 1:12-20; Luke 23:35-43 In a time and place forged by the egalitarian ideals of our nation’s founders, it can be hard to see why we should celebrate Christ as King. At the same time, many modern […]

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Seeking ‘everlasting encouragement’ of God’s faithfulness in resurrected life

Shawn Reeves

By Shawn Reeves Thirty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time/Nov. 10 2 Maccabees 7:1-2,9-14; Psalm 17:1,5-6,8,15; 2 Thessalonians 2:16 — 3:5; Luke 20:27-38 Rarely does someone grow in understanding without asking questions, but not all questions are honest ones. In today’s Gospel, Jesus is encountered with a rather insincere question about a hypothetical situation. The question is insincere […]

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The one goal of all prayer — whether praise, contrition, petition, thanksgiving

Father R. Michael Schaab

By Father R. Michael Schaab Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time/Oct. 27 Sirach 35:12-14,16-18; Psalm 34:2-3,17-18,19,23; 2 Timothy 4:6-8,16-18; Luke 18:9-14 — Today’s readings have much to say about prayer. The traditional division of prayer into Praise, Contrition, Petition and Thanksgiving can help us address the topic. The easiest to address is Praise. The Psalm states, “I […]

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A gift from God, faith requires conversion throughout our lives

Father R. Michael Schaab

By Father R. Michael Schaab Twenty-Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time/Oct. 13 2 Kings 5:14-17; Psalm 98:1,2-3,3-4; 2 Timothy 2:8-13; Luke 17:11-19 Both in the Old Testament, as in today’s first reading from the Second Book of Kings, and in the New Testament, as in today’s Gospel reading, those who are healed and respond in faith are […]

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