TEXT: Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord, Christmas, December 25, 2016

Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord, Christmas December 25, 2016 Homily by Fr. John De Celles St. Raymond of Peñafort Catholic Church Springfield, VA   Merry Christmas! What a great day. So many wonderful things going on —the family, the food, the gifts, so many things. But of course, one of the things that makes it different from every other day is all the great memories of Christmases past that make this day seem bigger than life.   I’m sure all of you have those memories. I know I do. Memories of my childhood Christmases with my Mom and … Continue reading

TEXT: 4th Sunday of Advent, December 18, 2016

4th Sunday of Advent December 18, 2016 Homily by Fr. John De Celles St. Raymond of Peñafort Catholic Church Springfield, VA   These last four Sundays we’ve lit a candle to count down the passing of the Advent season, each candle reminding us that the celebration of the birth of the Savior of the world was coming that much closer. Today, we enter the final week of preparation before the celebration begins. It’s a celebration we mark spiritually by recalling the events of that wondrous night when the world was changed forever. We place ourselves in the presence of the … Continue reading

TEXT: 3rd Sunday of Advent, December 11, 2016

3rd Sunday of Advent December 11, 2016 Homily by Fr. John De Celles St. Raymond of Peñafort Catholic Church Springfield, VA   This time of year life gets pretty hectic –on top of the regular year-end busy-ness at work and school, we have the ultimate craziness of what the secular world calls “the Holiday” season: everyone running around shopping or decorating, or planning trips, or visiting family and friends. There’s a lot going on, but even in the midst of the craziness, there is a certain air of joy, because most of what’s going on goes on in an atmosphere … Continue reading

TEXT: 2nd Sunday of Advent, December 4, 2016

2nd Sunday of Advent December 4, 2016 Homily by Fr. John De Celles St. Raymond of Peñafort Catholic Church Springfield, VA   The last few days I’ve been reading the new book-length interview with Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, called “Last Testament.” This got me to thinking of one of his best papal encyclicals that has great meaning for us at this time of year —the Encyclical “Spe Salvi,” Saved in Hope.” If you haven’t read it I commend it to you as a wonderful way to revitalize your understanding of Advent, the season of looking back to the hope fulfilled … Continue reading

TEXT: 1st Sunday of Advent, November 27, 2016

1st Sunday of Advent November 27, 2016 Homily by Fr. John De Celles St. Raymond of Peñafort Catholic Church Springfield, VA   “So too, you also must be prepared.” After seeing all the folks shopping on Friday—“Black Friday”— this line spoken by Jesus is today’s Gospel would seem extremely apropos today. We’ve begun the “holiday season” and the next four weeks will be a mad rush to shop, cook, travel and party, all to be “prepared for Christmas.”   Of course, all this is strictly the secular—or worldly—perspective of preparing for Christmas, and the “holiday season.” At best it sees … Continue reading