Category Archives: Sunday Homilies

Sunday of the Holy Fathers – Matthew 5: 14-19

Not One Dot or Iota will be Changed

The Reading is from Matthew 5:14-19

The Lord said to his disciples, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a bushel, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfil them. For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” Continue reading

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Sunday Homily for 6th Sunday of Matthew – Healing of the Paralyzed Man

6th Sunday of Matthew, Matthew 9: 1-8

I affirm in your presence this day that we’re witnesses of a beautiful miracle this morning: through the living word of the Gospel, we see a paralyzed man who cannot walk on his own, healed of his paralysis by God, He who had made his legs in the first place and given this man his first heart-beat in his mother’s womb. For, as the Psalmist David says, “I am fearfully and wonderfully made…You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb” (Ps. 138). Christ God, as the Logos (Word) of God, through whom all things were made, knew this man and loved this man with a fatherly love even before he was presented to him. Continue reading

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Jesus Do Not Disturb Me!

5th Sunday of Matthew, Matthew 8: 28-34—9:1

When you stay in a hotel or motel, there is a little sign that you can hang on the outside of your door that says, “Do Not Disturb!” How many of us have taken one of these signs and used them at home? Do Not Disturb! This is basically what the two demoniacs say to Jesus in today’s Gospel reading from the Fifth Sunday of Matthew (8:28 – 9:1). As they came out from the cemetery, ’29 Suddenly they shouted, “What have You to do with us, Son of God? Have You come here to torment us before the time?”(v.29).’ When they say “before the time”, they are referring to the time of the Parousia, the Second Coming of Christ when He will destroy Satan and all his demons and establish His heavenly kingdom forever (see the Creed). It reminds me when I was a teenager and my parents would wake me up to go to school or to church on Sunday. No matter when it was, it was always “before the time”; it was always too early. I wish I had a “Do Not Disturb!” sign. In the Gospel, the demoniacs were not the only ones saying do not disturb us. After the swine herders saw Jesus expel the demons, they went into the town – ’34Then the whole town came out to meet Jesus; and when they saw Him, they begged Him to leave their neighborhood.’ Continue reading

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There Is Hope for Us All: Homily for the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul in the Orthodox Church

None of us can tell the story of our lives without pointing to particular persons we have known and who have shaped us. In our families and friendships, people are not interchangeable, for we are all unique in our relationships with one another and with God. We play particular roles that are colored by our character, personal history, and distinctive blend of strengths and weaknesses. That is also how it is in the life of the Church. Particular people matter. Continue reading

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The Eye is the Lamp of the Body

Third Sunday of Matthew, Matthew 6: 22-33

One summer a tailor toured Europe. Somehow he arranged for a meeting with the Pope. When he returned to work, his friend eagerly asked, ‘Tell me, what kind of man is the Pope?’ He pondered a moment, then answered, ‘He is a 39 short.’

It is one of the truths of life that we see as we are. The painter sees the world in color, the sculptor in form; the musician perceives the world in sound, and the economist in commodities. Show two people the very same painting and each will notice something different in it.

Jesus begins today’s Gospel Reading, Third Sunday of Matthew 6:22-33, by saying, ‘22 The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!’ Continue reading

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Sermon for the Sunday of All Saints

Matt. 10: 32-33, 37-38, 19: 27-30

In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, One God. (Amen)

Brothers and Sisters, on this day we observe a very meaning-filled celebration, after the many radiant Sundays of Great Lent and of the Season of Pascha, leading up to the glorious feast of Pentecost. Pentecost, as last week’s Gospel reading told us, was “the last and greatest day of the feast,” in Saint John’s words, and, as it was celebrated by the Jewish nation in the time of Christ, it was a very festive holiday celebrating the harvest. Special offerings and sacrifices were prescribed by the Law for this holiday. Continue reading

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Pentecost – Trinity Sunday

John 7: 7-52, 8:12

Today is the Feast of Pentecost. I think that today’s feast is one of the most under-emphasized and misunderstood Feasts in the Orthodox Church… as a matter of fact, Pentecost is among the most important Feasts. We might even dare to say that Pentecost is as important as Pascha itself! As important as Pascha, because Pentecost makes Pascha accessible to us. Pentecost makes Pascha relevant. Pentecost is the descent of the Holy Spirit on the Church, and without the presence of the Holy Spirit, Christ’s resurrection is, at best, a historical fact. Yes, Jesus rose from the dead. Yes, Death could not contain Him. Yes, He is God, who created heaven and earth and He emerged from the tomb after three days, but what does the fact of Christ’s resurrection mean to me, Can I know this Jesus, who rose from the dead, Can I have a relationship with Him that is meaningful. Without the presence of the Holy Spirit, the answer to these questions is, “no.” Think about it, right after He rose from the dead, He ascended into heaven. How then would the disciples, let alone us who live 2,000 years later, have a relationship with Jesus. He was taken up into the sky. I often imagine the disciples after the ascension, looking at one another, saying, “Where did He go”? Continue reading

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