Monday, July 30, 2012

Trying Out the Podcast

Not sure how long it will last, but I am experimenting with a podcast.  Maybe I will post Sunday Homilies each week.  For now, I'm just giving it a whirl.  Problem is, all of these things involve far more tech savvy than I have.  I believe, however, if you look on the sidebar, there is a way to listen to the first podcast.  The podcast site is 

Let's see how it works.  By the way, thanks to all of those who read the blog and who encourage me.  We are very blessed!  God Bless.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Hook and Hastings: The Movie Debut


I know, you think that I've just become lazy and that's why I haven't been blogging.  But the real truth is that I've been busily working on my movie career.  Once you've seen it, you will conclude that I should keep to blogging. 

St. Mary Star of the Sea Parish in Beverly is replacing its organ console.  About five years ago, we refurbished the entire pipe organ--a 1908 Hook and Hastings.  We were able to do the whole project, but not the console.  Now, the console is failing rapidly and we need to act. 

Check out the video!
And the webpage:

You will marvel at how my Boston accent is almost entirely undetectable.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Rebellion Against God is Rebellion Against Man

Rebels, hard of face, obstinate of heart, a rebellious house, and lacking in faith.  Both in the Book of Ezekiel this Sunday and in the Gospel, God's word is sent to unreceptive hearts, hearts that were hardened.  God sees and knows our hearts.  Do we know our own hearts?  Do we know if our hearts have become hardened by obstinate disobedience, lust, anger, resentments, pride, sloth, envy, greed, gluttony, or other sins?  So rebellious had the Hebrew people become that you could see it in their faces.  Ezekiel describes them as "hard of face." 

Sin is rebellion against God.  The more we yield to sin, the more obstinate our hearts become.  How many people in the world stopped speaking to somebody they loved years ago?  If you asked, "Why did you stop speaking to one another?" they will often answer, "I don't remember exactly." It is the same way with God.  When we give ourselves over to some sin or another, it is like pouring cement into our hearts.  Slowly, they become impenetrable to the Truth.  They become rebellious towards God's law.  We become insistent that the "The Church is wrong and I am right." 

As crazy as it sounds, quite often when we give ourselves over to sin, we try  to prove ourselves right, by pouring ourselves into it wholeheartedly.  We go from "making a mistake" or from "falling down" into a full-blown rebellion.  The person who fails to go to Mass on a particular Sunday goes from that to saying, "I don't need to confess that before receiving Communion again."  The married person who violates the marriage vow soon becomes the person announcing to the world, "I have the right to be happy.  The children will get over it."  The man who is angry and resentful instead of opening himself to God's grace and peace tries to get the rest of the world stirred up as well.  He is no longer content to be bitter and angry alone.  He won't rest until everyone is bitter and angry!

When our hearts are rebellious, they hinder God from working within us.  In the Gospel we are told that no mighty deeds could be worked in the town because of their lack of faith.  They heard Jesus' wisdom and marveled at it.  But, instead of those words being accepted and becoming the source of miracles, they were rejected.  Why?  Because the hearts of the people were hardened.

The Psalms say, "If today you hear his voice, harden not your heart."  We cannot break through the concrete of our own hearts.  We can only ask Jesus to take away our stony hearts and to put a new heart within us.  Today the Lord is offering a new heart.  Rebellion against the Lord and his commands leads to a heart that his hardened, distant from God, and miserable.  When we rebel against God, his word, his commands, and his Church, we act against our very selves.  We destroy ourselves. The heart that welcomes God's word is a heart in which Jesus performs mighty deeds.

If today you hear his voice, harden not your heart.