Jun 02, 2024

HOMILY FOR MASS OF CORPUS CHRISTI THE SOLEMNITY OF THE MOST HOLY BODY AND BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST

It was probably the largest gathering ever held in Sydney. Half a million people packed the streets for a week. The opening and closing ceremonies gathered people of every stripe from all around our city, country and globe, ordinary people both young and old, and a Who’s Who of celebrities. Despite adverse publicity in the lead up, Sydney was a joyful host, and in the end almost everyone judged it a great success…

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May 26, 2024

HOMILY FOR MASS FOR THE SOLEMNITY OF THE MOST HOLY TRINITY, YEAR B

There’s a million dollar purse just waiting for you. All you have to do is be the first person to solve one of seven extremely complex maths problems.[1] Some of the conundrums are centuries old and have been attempted by some of the most brilliant minds in history. But in the 24 years since the Millennium Prize Problems were set and the reward offered by the Clay Mathematics Institute…

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May 22, 2024

HOMILY FOR MAXIMUS MEN’S MINISTRY NETWORK MASS

The Irish poet, dramatist and senator, William Butler Yeats, was one of the foremost literary figures of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In 1923 he won the Nobel Prize in Literature for “his always inspired poetry, which in highly artistic form gives expression to the spirit of a whole nation.”[1] A central figure in the resurgence of Irish literature,[2] his influence stretched…

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May 21, 2024

HOMILY FOR MASS FOR CONSECRATED LIFE

Twenty-eight years ago, following the Synod on consecrated life, Pope St John Paul II released his Apostolic Exhortation, Vita Consecrata.[1] Its opening sentence reads: “The Consecrated Life, deeply rooted in the example and teaching of Christ the Lord, is a gift of God the Father to his Church through the Holy Spirit.”…

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May 19, 2024

HOMILY FOR THE SOLEMN MASS OF PENTECOST (YEAR B) + ADULT CONFIRMATIONS

Around 1600 Doménikos Theotok/ópoulos—known as El Greco—painted his Pentecost, now in the Prado in Madrid. Born in Crete, where he studied Byzantine iconography, he honed his skills at the feet of the master Titian, while imitating the likes of Michelangelo, Raphael and Tintoretto. Yet he had his own distinctive style, with tortuously elongated figures and phantasmagorical pigmentation…

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May 08, 2024

HOMILY FOR THE REQUIEM MASS FOR MOST REV. PETER INGHAM

I was there when Bishop Peter Ingham, during an Ad limina visit of all the Bishops of Australia to Rome, asked one of the gloriously dressed Vatican soldiers what country he was from. “Switzerland,” the guarded guard answered. “Switzerland?” Peter said, “I didn’t know there were Catholics in Switzerland.” Then he asked another of the guards, “And what country are you from?” “Switzerland,” the puzzled youth answered, to which the elderly Australian bishop responded…

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May 05, 2024

HOMILY FOR MASS OF THE SIXTH SUNDAY OF EASTER, YEAR B + ACBC PLENARY

The idea of the ‘golden ticket’ was first popularised in Roald Dahl’s 1964 novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and its subsequent film adaptations. A poor paperboy named Charlie Bucket has his life turned upside down when he finds a golden ticket in a chocolate bar, inviting him to visit Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. He tours the chocolate palace with four other children: the gluttonous Augustus Gloop, the snobby Veruca Salt…

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Apr 24, 2024

HOMILY FOR THE VIGIL MASS OF ANZAC DAY

Is war just human nature? According to a recent article in Scientific American, answers to this question tend to fall into two camps. The ‘Hawks’ hold that taking up arms is an evolved human behaviour aimed at eliminating competitors. War is an expression of natural animal aggression and defensiveness, preferencing survival of the group…

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Apr 23, 2024

Homily for Mass for Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Easter

In today’s Gospel Jesus is in the Temple on the winter Feast of the Dedication or ‘Hannukah’ (Jn 10:22-30). Just as it is today, it was celebrated around the time of His birthday. Jewish holy days are Scriptural in origin: Shabbat, the Saturday day of rest and weekly observance of God’s completion of creation; Rosh Hashanah…

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