October 27, 2013

Persecution of Christians. Whether by the laws of governments, or the bullying voices of the media, or the bloody attacks by both governments and other religions, the persecution of Christianity is growing throughout the world. Most frightening is the dramatic increase in violent persecution. Three weeks ago Taliban suicide bombers killed 85 worshippers at All Saints’ church in Pakistan. Two months ago Islamists attacked 63 churches in Egypt. Last month Syrian Christians begged President Obama not to bomb President Assad, because he is their only protection from the Islamist rebels. I could go on and on. Yet the media and … Continue reading

February 3, 2013

Last Week’s Bulletin. I apologize that we were not able to distribute the complete 6 page bulletin to you last week. I hope the single-sheet “abbreviated bulletin” we threw together was helpful, and I’m sorry if any group felt short changed if something they had running in the full bulletin was omitted. By now I hope you all received your copy of that full bulletin, mailed to each parish household courtesy of the bulletin company. Lent Series. Lent is just around the corner and we will soon give you details about the Lenten schedule. But I wanted to announce early … Continue reading

January 27, 2013

Back from South Bend. As I wrote in my last column, I was out of town last weekend, officiating at a family wedding in South Bend, IN. It was a great weekend, not only because of the wedding, but also since I was able to visit with all my brothers and sisters and most of my nieces , nephews, grand-nephews and grand-nieces. But I have to apologize: it seems I brought the frigid cold weather back with me to NoVa. Sorry. Fighting the Good Fight. This last week we witnessed 2 important events on the National Mall in Washington: on … Continue reading

29th Sunday in Ordinary Time 2012

October 21, 2012 Homily by Fr. John De Celles St. Raymond of Peñafort Catholic Church Springfield, Va. You know, one of the great consolations of being a priest here at St. Raymond’s is the kindness of our parishioners. But sometimes people, even very kind people, complain about what I do. And I understand that and I try not to let it bother me, because first of all I know I screw up, and second, well, I know that you can’t please all the people all the time. Besides, I’m a big boy, I can handle, especially when criticisms are presented … Continue reading

27th Sunday in Ordinary Time 2012

October 7, 2012 Homily by Fr. John De Celles St. Raymond of Peñafort Catholic Church Springfield, Va. Today our Bishops ask us to commemorate Respect Life Sunday —to remember that our nation, and much of the world, has been caught up in a culture of death spurred on by the evil of abortion. In this context today I want to focus on one key aspect of the culture of death, and that is its effects on women. Nine months ago certain so called “progressive” politicians began to accuse more conservative politicians of what they called waging a “War on Women.” … Continue reading

October 7, 2012

Today is “Respect Life Sunday,” beginning “Respect Life Month,” in which the American Bishops call us to remember that over 3000 innocent Americans are killed every day by abortions, over 1.3 million a year, for a total of over 50 million dead since 1973. But even as horrible as that death toll is, we can’t forget that abortion has other consequences as well—consequences that have been eating away at the moral and legal fiber of our nation and culture. Of course, we cannot forget the consequence of abortion’s devastating effect on women. Especially the women who have been lied to … Continue reading

26th Sunday in Ordinary Time 2012

September 30, 2012 Homily by Fr. John De Celles St. Raymond of Peñafort Catholic Church Springfield, Va. Sometimes we’re so busy seeing the differences between ourselves and others that we fail to see the good things we have in common. On the other hand, it is important to recognize those differences, first of all to see the differences that we may want to overcome, but also, to recognize and protect ourselves against values that we don’t share. This tension between recognizing both the good and the bad in others is a source of particular difficulty for Christians –we want to … Continue reading

September 9, 2012

Welcome, Fr. Joseph Kenna. I’m sure you all join me in extending a warm and heartfelt welcome to Fr. Kenna, our new Parochial Vicar. It’s great to have him here, and I look forward to working with him to help you all draw closer to Christ and His Church. Of course, Father will need a little time to get his feet firmly on the ground, change is hard as we all know. But I know he’s looking forward to rolling up his sleeves and getting to work and to know all of you. Please join me this afternoon (Sunday) after … Continue reading