Posts

Showing posts from April, 2019

Geeky Catholic Sunday: Divine Mercy 2019

Gospel Reading: John 20:19-31

Highlight: "Have you come to believe because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed."

Reflection: Poor Thomas. "Doubting Thomas." It's so easy to give him a hard time for disbelieving something that we've known about for two thousand years. But did he really have any less faith than the other ten apostles? Remember, the other ten had seen the risen Jesus. Thomas had not. When I was growing up, Jesus' words always seemed like a pat on the back for modern Christians, since we believe in Jesus and the resurrection without seeing. But what if there's more to it than that? It is reasonable to believe in Jesus, given the evidence we have, and the testimony of a millennia of believers. What takes faith is believing when things are difficult, whether that means holding onto your faith in the face of personal tragedy, or accepting the teachings of the faith even when they don't make sense yet.

G…

Geeky Catholic Easter 2019

Image
Gospel Reading: John 20:1-9

Highlight (from the Sequence): "Christ indeed from death is risen, our new life obtaining. Have mercy, victor King, ever reigning."

Reflection: I'm not exaggerating when I say that the resurrection of Jesus Christ is the single most important thing that has ever happened in human history. St. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 15:17 that "if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins." But how many of us take the resurrection for granted? If you've known since childhood that Jesus rose from the dead, it might not seem as amazing anymore. Easter Sunday following after Good Friday becomes just as natural as day following night.

Perhaps we can better understand Easter's significance if we try to look at it from the perspective of someone who didn't know it was coming. To the apostles, the death of Jesus on Good Friday must have been unimaginably tragic. It wasn't just the death of their friend…

Geeky Catholic Sunday: Palm Sunday 2019

Gospel Reading: Luke 22:14-23:56

Highlight: "We have been condemned justly, for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes, but this man has done nothing criminal."

Reflection: As we prepare to enter the Easter Triduum, and meditate on the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus, let us take a moment to observe the contrast between Jesus and the two thieves on either side of him on Calvary Hill. When we fall - when we choose to sin instead of doing what is right - how do we react? Do we turn more fully away from Christ, or do we turn towards him? Do we become bitter because of the suffering that comes as a result of our sins, or do we turn towards the one who can relieve that suffering and forgive our sins?

Geeky Quote:
"If all was lost
There's more I gained
'Cause it led me back
To you."
               - Phineas T. Barnum, The Greatest Showman

Prayer: Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me a sinner. Amen.

To get these short refle…

What Did We Just See?!? My thoughts on the Star Wars Episode IX Trailer

Image
Thousands of Star Wars fans are gathered in Chicago right now for Star Wars: Celebration (which is a massive Star Wars convention, for those who might not know). They were just treated to an hour-long panel with J.J. Abrams, Kathleen Kennedy, and the cast of Episode IX, moderated by Stephen Colbert. The panel was streamed live online, and will probably be available to watch on YouTube soon, if not already. At the very end, everyone left the stage and they aired the very first teaser trailer for Star Wars: Episode IX.

Here's a link to the trailer, if you haven't seen it yet: https://youtu.be/adzYW5DZoWs

Below is my breakdown. For the purposes of this summary, anything in all-caps represents the text displayed during the trailer. Italics is voice-over, and plain text is descriptions of the visuals with my interpretation.

The Trailer
We start with a black screen.

Rey: [breathing, as if she had just been running.]

The shot opens up looking at Rey, standing in a desert. Is it Jakku …

Geeky Catholic Sunday: The Fifth Sunday of Lent 2019

Gospel Reading: John 8:1-11

Highlight: "Then Jesus said, 'Neither do I condemn you.'"

Reflection: When preparing this week's reflection, I was struck by the fact that this Gospel passage does not address whether or not the woman repented of her sin. This story is not about the woman's contrition or Christ's forgiveness. But it's not because those themes are insignificant; they can be found in plenty of other places in the Gospels. This passage is aimed at those of us who would act like the crowd, heaping judgment and rejection on those we deem to be "sinners." We are not sinless, and we do not see into the souls of the people we callously dismiss as sinners. So Christ tells us that it is not our responsibility to make sure that someone suffers for their sins. I shouldn't tailgate a driver who cuts me off in traffic. Nor should I harass someone online for making a comment I judge to be insensitive or immoral. God alone is Judge. We should f…