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17th Sunday of Year A

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Fr. Vincent Hawkswell

17th Sunday of Year A

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Fr. Charles E. Irvin

17th Sunday of Year A

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Dominican Blackfriars

17th Sunday of Year A

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Bishop Robert Barron

17th Sunday of Year A

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Fr. George Corrigan, OFM

17th Sunday of Year A

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Fr. Austin Fleming

17th Sunday of Year A

CONCORD
PASTOR

HOMILIES

What Do You Really Want?

The Lord invited Solomon to ask for whatever he wanted.
What do you and I want this morning?
What do you and I need this morning?
And how is God involved in the mix
of our wants and our wishes, our dreams and our desires?

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Fr. George Smiga

17th Sunday of Year A

BUILDING
ON THE WORD

ARCHIVE

A Pair of Parables

RELATED HOMILIES:

Searching for Pearls (2014)
Buried Treasure (2017)
Owning the Pearl (2020)

These two little parables of the kingdom relativize our approach to salvation. They remind us that obtaining the most important things in life is not a process over which we have control. It is a process over which God has control. And God is not bound to use our wisdom or our efforts. Now, should we go for what is the most important thing? Should we seek our heart’s desire? By all means—with all of our energy and strength. If we try sincerely, sometimes like the merchant searching for fine pearls, we will find it. But on those days when our energy runs out, on those days when our searching seems futile, on those days when we can not even think of another thing we can try, the gospel reminds us not to give up hope. God still intends to save us. God still intends to give us our heart’s desire. And it is possible to stumble on the most important things, like finding a treasure hidden in a field

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Msgr. Joseph Pellegrino

17th Sunday of Year A

DIOCESE OF
ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA

HOMILIES

Wisdom, Predestination and the Christian Life

Today’s readings drove me to the dogmatic theology books. The first reading from 1 Kings speaks about wisdom. The second from Romans speaks about predestination, the gospel from Matthew speaks about the Christian life.

Starting this column using the word “dogma” is about as popular as beginning with a sentence using the phrase, “parish finances”. For some the word dogma presents an image of a cold statement of faith, important for theological discussion, but totally irrelevant for living the Christian life. This is not so. Dogma is alive and continually growing as we come to a clearer understanding of what makes a man and a woman. If we are going to lead a Christian life, we have to know who Jesus is and how Christianity can exist in the modern world.

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Msgr. Charles Pope

17th Sunday of Year A

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Fr. Robert Altier

17th Sunday of Year A

CATHOLIC PARENTS
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HOMILIES

Love is a Two Way Street

God loves you so much that He is willing to give everything for you.  Now each of us needs to ask: “How much do I love God?”  Is God the pearl of great price in my life?  Is God, Who dwells in the depths of my soul, the hidden treasure I have uncovered?  Is He so valuable to me that I am willing to give everything to have Him?  God made His choice; now we must make ours.

This is the fruit of wisdom: to have understanding about what is truly most important.  Our society says the self is most important.  God tells us love is most important, love of God first, then love of neighbor.  Love is focused on the other, not on the self, so this is the opposite of what the world presents.  So, pray for wisdom, not only so we can have insight into how God is trying to help us to love more perfectly, but most importantly, to get our priorities right and to love our Lord, the true Pearl of great price, with our whole heart and soul and strength.

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Fr. Michael Chua

17th Sunday of Year A

ARCHDIOCESE OF KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA

HOMILIES

We are bombarded with information like never before, due to theinternet. Research is made easy with Google search engine and Wikipedia. But the real setback and downside of this informational deluge is that we are unable to separate the wheat from the darnel, the true from the false. We have more information than we can ever process at our finger-tips, but little wisdom. In fact, wisdom can be shattered by too much information. 

That begs the question, what is wisdom? In Greek, the New Testament word for wisdom is ‘Sophia’. To be wise to a Greek meant to understand a concept, to analyse something. That’s not the word in Hebrew. The word in Hebrew is ‘chakam’. The concept of wisdom in the Old Testament is a form of practical knowledge – How do we make correct choices in life? Biblical wisdom is not simply factual knowledge or information. Neither is it some clever opinion. Rather, it is being able to see things as they really are and make the right decisions. Wisdom helps us to distinguish Truth from falsehood, the good from the bad. This was the kind of wisdom that King Solomon had asked for – the ability to grasp the mind of God, His Laws and to distinguish good from evil. Strangely, this is the same knowledge coveted by Adam and Eve, and which they attempted to steal from Eden. They failed to recognise that they already had this gift at their disposal. They only had to listen to God and trust Him. God would tell them what is good and what is evil. Such wisdom was God’s to give, not for them to steal.

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Fr. Tom Lynch

17th Sunday of Year A

PRIESTS FOR LIFE
CANADA

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Clergy E-Notes

Pro-life reflections and intercessions related to the Sunday readings

We are called today to place our priorities in right order. Solomon chose wisdom, the merchant, the pearl. When faced with difficult questions, we too must decide what is of greatest value, and abandon everything else. Those considering abortion may sacrifice much if they choose life, but they can be assured of God’s abundant blessings, because life is God’s greatest gift.

Solomon is apprehensive about governing the people while he is such a young man. Yet, God strengthens him in his youthfulness for the task of governing Israel. In the pro-life cause, some of the greatest soldiers for life are our young people, who promote the Gospel of Life – let us encourage them in their efforts to put their talents at the service of God.

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Fr. Jude Langeh, CMF

17th Sunday of Year A

YAOUNDE,
CAMEROON

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Jesus Our Treasure

A treasure is of often referred to something valuable (such as money, jewels, gold, or silver) that is hidden or kept in a safe place. It also refers to something that is very special, important, or valuable. On another note, it refers to a person who is greatly loved or valued especially because of being very helpful. Pearls too like treasures are objects of supreme value. In order to show the value and splendour of the Kingdom of Heaven, Jesus puts forth parables using objects of great value. The dragnet for the fisherman is also of great value because with this tool he can get enough fish.

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Fr. Phil Bloom

17th Sunday of Year A

ST. MARY OF THE VALLEY
ARCHDIOCESE OF
SEATTLE

HOMILIES

Evil is Like the Coronavirus

Bottom line: Evil does not have an independent existence. Like a parasite or like the coronavirus, evil sucks out life, bringing sickness and death. Only Jesus brings goodness that lasts: the buried treasure, the pearl of great price.

Evil, whether lust, greed or laziness, is always parasitical. It destroys something good and in the end, destroys even pleasure itself.

So, what do we do? It’s usually not a good idea to confront evil directly. I remember Bishop Sheen saying we have to crowd out evil. Fill your life with things positive. Ultimately we have to do what Jesus says today: find the treasure buried in a field. Go after that pearl of great price.

RELATED HOMILIES:

2017:  Spiritual Warfare Week 6: Make a Smart Investment
2014:  Life in the Spirit Week 4
2011:  Hidden Treasure
2008:  All Things Work for Good
2005:  The Pearl of Great Price
2002:  Either/Or
1999:  What is Heaven?

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Fr. Tommy Lane

17th Sunday of Year A

BIBLE STUDY,
PRAYER AND HOMILY
RESOURCES

DIOCESE OF
CLOYNE, IRELAND

HOMILIES

Jesus is Our Treasure

Do we have to set out on a journey to find this treasure, this pearl, Jesus? Do we need a map? Yes, we do! The journey is the journey into our own hearts, and the map has been given us by Jesus himself. How should we begin? By praying and receiving the sacraments frequently and getting to know our Bible. I believe that none of us is praying enough. That’s why there are so many problems. If we all prayed more, I believe many situations would work out much better. So pray more, and receive the sacraments more often, and get to know our Bible so that the pearl, Jesus, may grow within us, a treasure that will not let us down. Then we can go off happy like the man in the parable. (Matt 13:44)

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Fr. Michael Fallon, MSC

17th Sunday of Year A

ST. MARY’S TOWERS
RETREAT CENTER

DOUGLAS PARK, NSW
AUSTRALIA

HOMILIES

Re-examining Our Goals in Life

Today’s Readings invite us to re-examine our goals in life. What am I living for? What do I want in life, for myself? For those I love? Is there something still hidden that if I found it I would give everything up for it? Among the broken and unexplored shells, is there a precious pearl waiting for me that would make all the searching and all the suffering worthwhile?

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Fr. John Kavanaugh, S.J.

17th Sunday of Year A

JESUIT HOMILIST,
SCHOLAR AND AUTHOR (1941-2012)

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The Higher Wisdom

What is our treasure that, once found, is worth all we can sell or trade? What is the pearl of great price for which we would sacrifice everything? This is what the gospel’s reign of God is about: our hearts’ desire, our deepest existential longing.

Some seek pleasures in every variation imaginable. They fall away sated but restless. Some build shrines to the ego’s power. They die alone, unloved, and uncaring. Others collect their things, like the movies’ Citizen Kane, empty of substance.

Solomon dreamed long ago that a higher wisdom and deeper joy might be found. It would not be grasped in the accumulation of things, the collection of earthly delights, or dominance over others, even though these would be given to him in good time.

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Bishop Frank Schuster

17th Sunday of Year A

AUXILIARY BISHOP
ARCHDIOCESE OF
SEATTLE

HOMILIES

ARCHIVE

The Pearl of Great Price

The readings this Sunday challenge us, in no uncertain terms, to point a finger at what we hold to be the most important in life. God shows up in Solomon’s bedroom, and tells him, “Ask something of me and I will give it to you”. Now, just imagine that. Solomon could have asked for anything. He could have chosen a long life. Solomon could have chosen riches. Solomon could have chosen to have all his enemies put under his heel. Think of all the things Solomon could have asked for!

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Fr. Michael Cummins

17th Sunday of Year A

THE ALTERNATE
PATH

VICAR OF PRIESTS,
DIOCESE OF
KNOXVILLE, TN

HOMILIES

Choices and Consequences

In our first reading (1 Kgs 3:5, 7-12) Solomon was also faced with a choice.  God says to the young king, “Ask something of me and I will give it to you.”  Solomon could have asked for anything and God knows this.  Solomon, aware of his role as a young king, asks, “Give your servant, therefore, an understanding heart to judge your people and distinguish right from wrong.”  Solomon is blessed in his choice because he made a choice for the Kingdom of God.  He did not choose for himself – to build up his ego, his wealth or his power – rather, he made a choice for others – he asked for wisdom that he might serve and govern God’s people well and justly.  In so doing, Solomon mirrored the reality of God who is love who pours himself out for all of his creation and Solomon was blessed.  Life grew within him.

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