Juan Point at a Time
By Juan P Ruiz
Juan Point at a TimeSep 21, 2023
Lord, I am not worthy you should enter under my roof.
Unworthiness can be a rather distasteful concept in popular culture, but they are valued within our Christian tradition. So much so that we repeat it every mass... Why?
Year 1 - Ordinary Time - Week 24 - Monday
God sees us first
Today's Gospel is about an encounter between Philip, Jesus, and Nathaniel. As always, God takes the lead.
Feast of Saint Bartholomew
Decide in neither Desolation nor Jubilation
Saint Ignatius offers guidelines for the discernment of spirits in his spiritual writings. If I could add one thing with confidence thus far, it would be the simple reminder in this homily.
Year 1 - Ordinary Time - Week 17 - Saturday
Two Criteria for Companions on our Spiritual Journeys
This homily was given to high school freshman at the end of their orientation.
Year 1 - Ordinary Time - Week 17 - Friday
Accepting as God does
We can easily get lulled into one extreme or another when it comes to accepting others. Jesus wants to free us to love others just as he has loved us.
Year A - Ordinary Time - Week 13
3 Perspectives on Meaning in the Universe
Jesus speaks with metaphor about how the body is illumined or darkened by what we believe to be out there in the world - and tracking how different worldviews perceive meaning can help us understand our own perspective.
Year 1 - Ordinary Time - Week 11 - Friday
Telling Lies Telling Small Little Lies
Sometimes we tell lies to avoid a storm, but it erodes our integrity and becomes self-defeating. Jesus gives us the best reason not to do so.
Year A - Ordinary Time - Week 12
Keep Holy Those Sacred Spaces
Like an expectedly intense liturgist, Jesus unexpectedly draws our attention to sacred spaces. How much do I do to maintain my own?
Year 1 - Ordinary Time - Week 08
Get over thyself, my friend.
Jesus points Peter three times beyond himself, and, Saint Philip Neri, who is celebrated on this memorial, is one example of what that can look like.
Memorial of Saint Philip Neri
Easter - Week 07 - Friday
God has judged the world.
God has judged the world and in response He gave his only Son.
Year A - Ordinary Time - Week 09
Jesus had to leave.
Jesus didn't want us creating more division or setting ourselves against each other, that's why he had to leave. The unity Jesus wants is Catholic, universal.
Solemnity of the Ascension
Judas Sullied What Jesus Washed
Jesus teaches us a small lesson on how to respond to those whose betrayal is pending. It is a small lesson to learn, but very difficult lesson to practice.
Easter - Week 05 - Thursday
Jesus is The Way, The Truth, and the Life
Jesus refers to an often-heard and often-misunderstood or not-understood phrase in today's reading. This homily is a bit of unpacking of that phrase.
Year A - Easter - Week 05
We already know the Good Shepherd
Jesus claims that the sheep know the voice of the good shepherd... So what is that good shepherd like?
Easter - Week 04 - Sunday
When God Seems Disguised
People have difficulty recognizing Jesus after his resurrection. Is it because he wears disguises or they are missing something that has always been evident?
Year A - Easter - Week 03
What Thomas Sought
A Missing Detail on Resurrection Sunday
The Messiness of Farewells
Saying farewell well is always worth the trouble, even with the smallest things. And Jesus isn't bothered by the process in the least.
Holy Week - Monday
Martha gets such a bad rap she just doesn't deserve, which only makes her redemption all the sweeter.
Year A - Lent - Week 05
Living in a Shelter of Shame
We can sometimes get stuck living in a little shelter of shame, but the good and great news is that God's got so much more in mind for us.
Year A - Lent - Week 03
The Fear of Anonymity
A fear of anonymity coupled with never feeling known is a surely an indication of some evil spirit baloney.
Lent - Week 03 - Wednesday
Easier Said than Done, but Better Enjoyed than Not
Jesus invites us to forgive rather than judge or condemn, but that seems to be easier said than done. In today's homily, I offer a couple examples that help illustrate where one might begin when feeling stuck in judgment or condemnation.
Lent - Week 03 - Monday
Have no Fear When God shines forth through Man
Stop Arguing and Start Praying
Jesus encounters his disciples in an argument about a young lady and takes a different tact for healing her.
Year 1 - Ordinary Time - Week 07 - Monday
Mythbusting Paul's Conversion
The moment and duration of Saint Paul's conversion were not quite as people often imagine them.
Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul, Apostle
Given Authority with no expectation of Perfection
God shares his authority with us, even knowing that we often won't represent him perfectly.
Year 1 - Ordinary Time - Week 02 - Friday
Giving out Blessings... Have at it!
At the moment of the baptism of Jesus, John the Baptist makes a mistake many of us fall into, thinking we need to be good enough to give away a blessing.
Year A - Ordinary Time - Week 02
The Smallest Beginnings can Lead to the Greatest Stories
Saint Brother André Bessette is remarkable because he was tiny, did small things, and had an incredible influence.
Promote Christian Competition!
There is an arena in which Christians can compete with one another directly and it leads to the good of all the world.
Memorial of Saint Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen.
God is saying, "I love you."
The incarnation and nativity of Jesus tell us about how God prefers to say "I love you."
Solemnity of Christmas (Homily for Mass during the Day)
A Peak at Someone's Foundations
Everyone's house is built on some foundation, but the foundations are rarely visible. Yet sometimes, people show by their actions in secret upon what foundations their house rests.
Advent - Week 01 - Thursday
Double the Trouble and Double the Payoff
The Gospel of Matthew has a unique feature where the number of people healed or the number of animals encountered is twice that of other similar Gospel stories... No details within the Gospels are without purpose.
Advent - Week 01 - Friday
Secret Gratitude is like Ingratitude
Often Jesus shows us the way by walking ahead of us by expressing his pain openly, so that we can treat each other differently.
Year C - Thanksgiving
Striving for What is Worth Having
The Gospel reading sounds like it's about the rapture, but it's actually something much more mundane, and rather frightening.
Year A - Advent - Week 01
Who is Wearing the Crown?
Sometimes it seems easier to wear the crown than let it rest on Christ, but he is king of the universe and it is for love of us that he takes the crown upon himself.
Solemnity of Christ the King - Year C
Saint Charles Borromeo - Heroism of Cosmic Proportions
Saint Charles Borromeo enjoyed power and privilege as the beneficiary of less-than-ideal practices, yet he used every bit of it for the good of others.
Avoiding the Question Trap
Especially with topics around which we know so little, such as the bodily resurrection of the dead, we can get stuck in the muck and lose sight of living in the present moment.
Year C - Ordinary Time - Week 32
Giving Away Stature
Jesus is always pouring himself out for others. In this case, he pours out a part of himself some may never think to give away.
Year C - Ordinary Time - Week 31
Benefits of Acting Humbly even if for the wrong reasons
Receiving and Recognizing Gifts are two Different Things
Sometimes it's worthwhile to take stock of the gifts that are sitting right before us because we may not even realize they are already there.
Year C - Ordinary Time - Week 28
Some Sons in Trouble
Prodigal means ungrateful and the parable presents two such persons, one of whom can share redemption.
Year C - Ordinary Time - Week 24
We Need Not Go Far to Perform Works of Mercy
Saint Peter Claver was known for working among the neediest in Colombia, but as Saint Mother Teresa said, "Find your own Calcutta." Peter Claver points the way for each of us to do just that.
Feast of Peter Claver
The Steep Cost of Not-Discipleship
We often hear of the cost of discipleship, but it perhaps is not so high a price to pay when one considers the steep cost that can come with avoiding discipleship. And above that, the benefits only tip the scales further in favor of discipleship.
Year C - Ordinary Time - Week 23
Growing Closer to Christ in Daily Life
Life can often be too busy to make time for prayer, so why not make time prayerful?
Year 2 - Ordinary Time - Week 23 - Saturday
Feet on Earth, Heart in Heaven
The reading from the Gospel can seem frightening, but it's just a reminder that Christ knew that life was difficult. He lived it just as we do and wants us to be as faithful as he was to the end of our days.
Year C - Ordinary Time - Week 21
Saint Bernard of Clarivaux - Four Degrees of the Love of God
Saint Bernard of Clairvaux was an incredibly charismatic figure from our Church history. One can think that charisma comes from a personal giftedness to persuade, but perhaps Bernard's magnetism on others came from his nearness to God. His fourth degree of love is somewhat surprising, but reveals what a profound love of God leads to and also why he continues to be a compelling figure six hundred years after his death.
Wicked Weeds among Holy Wheat
The Gospels contain many truths, not the least of which is the fact that evil can crop up just about anywhere.
Year 2 - Ordinary Time - Week 17 - Tuesday
John the Baptist is Ahead of the Game
There are many people in today's reading and only one of them doesn't seem imprisoned, the prisoner.
Year C - Ordinary Time - Week 17 - Saturday
The Gift of Doubt
God is insistent on the point that it is to His Son that we should always look for guidance. Like any relationship, that means we can come to know the Other better.
Feast of the Transfiguration
Growing in Faith is like Watching a Sunrise
God is ready to do the hardest work, but we must collaborate with him if faith is to grow.
Year C - Ordinary Time - Week 19