When Faith Is Tested

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

June 7, 2020 The Most Holy Trinity - John 3:116-18

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

Our faith and trust in God are tested in difficult times – like what we are living through these days. We are all growing restless and tired as we continue to live during the limitations placed on us during the Covid-19 pandemic. We mourn for those who have been taken from our midst. We worry about our own health and that of others, particularly those we know who are frail. Many of us are also struggling because of lost jobs or reduced employment. We are not accustomed to the many limits imposed on us these days. Still, we try to do our best.

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Live in the Spirit

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

May 31, 2020 Pentecost Sunday - John 20:19-23

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

Many of us have recently learned a bit about the importance of our respiratory activity. That’s because our system of breathing is the primary target of the coronavirus. Most who die from the virus lose the capacity to breath. And what’s more central and essential to human life than breathing?       

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Coming to Terms with Mortality

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

May 24, 2020 Seventh Sunday of Easter - John 17:1-11

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

Our awareness of life and death has increased dramatically over the last few weeks. Thousands and thousands have tragically died during the coronavirus pandemic. So, it is almost impossible not to think of those who have died and to think about our own life in terms of our own eventual death.

From this Sunday’s gospel we recall that Jesus himself carried similar thoughts, especially as he neared the end of his own life. He thanked God for his life, a reminder that besides being divine himself, he was also human. Yet he fully believed that the end of his earthly life was not the end of him. He spoke of returning to the Father. He mentioned in his prayer toward the end that he had completed what he was sent to do, which was to offer to us an incredible gift from God. Eternal life!

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Close to Your Heart

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

May 17, 2020 Sixth Sunday of Easter - John 14: 15-21

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

The air was heavy with fear and distress. Recently Jesus has upset those who used temple worship for their own ends, that of making money for themselves. Jerusalem at the time was filled with pilgrims who had come to celebrate the Passover. The Roman authorities were thus on guard because they were worried about a local political uprising against their occupation. They were especially concerned that a local person might excite the people to rebellion. They had set up on a hill at the edge of Jerusalem a set of crosses that were being used to eradicate anyone they felt was dangerous. Like I said, there was fear in the air on all sides.

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Living the Truth

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

May 10, 2020 – Fifth Sunday of Easter - John 14:1-12

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

Over the years, many books have been published summarizing “the greatest” of this or that. Like “Greatest short stories” or “Greatest sayings” or “Greatest poems.” And now with the sports world mostly shut down, we are offered on TV “Greatest Super Bowls” or “Greatest fights of the century” or “Greatest blunders in baseball.” Since we are so limited now, it’s good to be able to see the greatest of something.

If we were to list “the Greatest sayings of Jesus,” a passage from this Sunday’s gospel would likely qualify. It is this: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will also know the Father.”

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Open for Business

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

May 3, 2020 Fourth Sunday of Easter - John 10:1-10

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

We are living at a time of closed gates. Think about the magnificent stadiums and other gathering places where we enjoy exciting sports events and musical concerts. These venues are symbols of our times, often dwarfing other buildings in our cities. That’s where our teams play. That’s where we find so much excitement and entertainment. And diversion. But today the gates are closed. Which allows us to more fully appreciate this Sunday’s gospel about open and closed gates.

 

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Remember and Believe

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

April 26, 2020 – Second Sunday of Easter - Luke 24:13-35

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

Many of us enjoy hearing or reading today’s gospel. There’s something both common and extraordinary about it. Two followers of Jesus are walking along a road just outside Jerusalem. (Some speculate that they might be a married couple.) A stranger approached and they begin to talk to him. The two are concerned and worried. They were in Jerusalem and had witnessed the terrible death of Jesus. They couldn’t get that out of their mind. Their new walking companion doesn’t seem to know about what happened to Jesus so the two filled him in on the details.

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Goodness Endures

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

April 19, 2020 – Second Sunday of Easter - John 20:19-31

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

I have a special appreciation of Thomas the Apostle. Not just because we share names but because he asked questions. If he had a doubt, he tried to find out more. Today we are given the wonderful account of his struggle with what the other disciples saw when he was somewhere else. Jesus appeared to his followers who were in hiding because they feared that they would be rounded up by the authorities who had recently crucified Jesus. They told Thomas what had happened in his absence. And true to form, Thomas was skeptical.

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Awaiting New Creation

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

April 12, 2020 – Easter Sunday - Luke 24:13-35

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

On two very unique days God created. On the first of those days, God created the Universe. Before, there was nothing but God. Then, in an instant, using the visionary analysis of Albert Einstein, there was energy and there was matter. All from a point, later called by scientists who know about such things, the singularity. It all instantly moved outward in a flash lasting one-billionth of a second, a nano second. That would have been something to see. And God did.

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Searching for Answers

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

April 5, 2020 – Palm Sunday - Matthew 26:14-27:66

REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.

It is impossible to listen to the gospel account of the death of Jesus without asking many questions. Here are a few that strike me. How did Jesus feel when his closest followers abandoned him? Why didn’t he defend himself before the authorities when given the opportunity? What was it like for him to be mocked, beaten and made fun of? Why did he accept a death that was so dreadful, so humiliating and so painful? Why didn’t he fight back? Or walk away?

All these questions (and many more) directly relate to the human response of Jesus to his passion and death. Given that Jesus was also fully divine, they also have a direct connection with his divine nature. We know God by observing Jesus as human.

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