Lent Bible Study of Mark

This Lent I led a bible study of the Passion of Christ according to the Gospel of Mark. It met for five sessions starting with the Last Supper through Christ’s death and burial. The five sessions were live-streamed and the recordings are on YouTube. You can watch all but the third session here: playlist. Unfortunately there was a streaming error on the third session that caused it to be lost.

The readings for the particular sections for each session can be downloaded here: readings. I typed up my commentary notes and formatted them into a little book. You can download the notes here: notes. I need to finish editing the notes, and add commentary on the final chapter of Mark, on Christ’s resurrection.

Personal Mass Log

Since I was ordained a priest, I have kept a simple log of all the Masses that I have celebrated. (At the time of this post I have celebrated 1089 Masses.) My first log book worked well enough but it was more detailed than I needed (and more expensive that I liked). So I created a custom Mass Log book designed for a priest’s personal use.

It can be purchased from lulu express here, and a PDF of the complete log can be downloaded here. The log contains 2500 individual entries and costs $12.12 (excluding shipping). I receive no money from a purchase, it is sold at cost.

Lent and Prayer, Fasting, and Alms Giving

Happy Lent to all! In the past I wrote a bit about the why of Lent with a focus on why we do penance. You can read that post here. This year I would like to look at Prayer, Fasting, and Alms Giving. Every year we here and discuss how this liturgical season is a time specially dedicated to these tasks. But how do we understand them, and why do we place a special focus on them this time of the year? The simple answer to why we focus on them now is to prepare to enter more fully into the paschal mysteries during the Triduum 1 , and ultimately participate more fully in Easter. This doesn’t quite answer why these three, or how these three practices do that.

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Merry Christmas

A very Merry Christmas to everyone! This year I am spending Christmas in Prague. This Advent, I spent some time reflecting on why we celebrate Christmas with such fanfare compared to other major feast of our Lord. For example: the baptism in the Jordan, or the Ascension, or even Pentecost. We do certainly have solemn celebrations for these other feast days, but not like how we do for Christmas.

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Filial Fear vs Servile Fear

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
    prudent are all who practice it.
    His praise endures forever.
Ps 111:10

A spirit of counsel and of strength,
    a spirit of knowledge and of fear of the Lord,
    and his delight shall be the fear of the Lord.
Is 11:2-3

What does it mean to fear the Lord? Aren’t we supposed to love God, and doesn’t he love us? How can we fear he whom we love and who loves us? In moral theology we make a classic distinction between two kinds of fear: servile fear and filial fear. But first, we need to look at how we react to fear.

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