The Catholic Deacon
By Deacon Stephen Valgos
The Catholic DeaconMar 20, 2022
4.7.23 Good Friday: The Good
4.2.23 Sun. Homily: Stand Up and Do Something
3.26.23 Sun. Homily: In Death and Resurrection
3.22.23 CCD Homily: Believe & Pray
3.19.23 Sun. Homily: Don't Miss the Blessing
3.12.23 Sun. Homily: Show Up, Pray, Encounter
3.5.23 Sun. Homily: He Makes Us Great
3.1.23 CCD Homily: Listen
2.22.23 CCD Homily: Dust and Ashes
2.12.23 Sunday Homily: One Bite at a Time
2.8.23 CCD Homily: Follow the Law
2.5.23 Sun. Homily: Salt and Light
2.1.23 CCD Homily: Be Salt and Light
1.29.23 Sun. Homily: Glory to God
1.25.23 CCD Homily: Change of Heart
1.8.23 Sun. Homily: The Star
1.4.23 CCD Homily: Called to Be Saints
Deacon Stephen teaches the youth that each of us is called, like Elizabeth Ann Seton, to be a saint.
1.1.23 Sunday Homily: An Heir
Deacon Stephen teaches that with the birth of Jesus Christ, we have become adopted children of God, inheritors of the riches of eternal life!
12.25.22 S. Homiy: The Visita
Today is John’s Gospel…no shepherds, no magi, no kings, no baby Jesus. John teaches if you want to know where Jesus came from, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. All things came to be through him...The true light that enlightens everyone was coming into the world.” In Jesus, the fullness of God, the eternal and invisible Word has visited his people. It’s the greatest visita of all time. The visita of vistas!
12.18.22 S. Homily: Emmanuel
As we arrive at this final Sunday of Advent, Deacon Stephen explains that peace and love is what this Christian things is truly all about, after all. In Jesus, through the incarnation, God brings peace to the human heart. Not anxiety, not fear, not guilt or shame, but peace and comfort, and calm. That’s how you know Emmanuel–God is with us.
12.14.22 Advent Mission Day 3 - The Eucharist. Food for the Journey
Deacon's part of this three part series is an explanation of the Eucharist and how God has provided this food from heaven as food that nourishes us through the journey of life. This is the bread that comes down from heaven during each Mass that we might be fed and remain strong to fight the good fight and enter into eternal life.
12.14.22 CCD Homily: Jesus
Deacon Stephen teaches the youth that God desires to be with us, one with us, and to speak and act through us. The name of Jesus itself means, "Jesus Saves." That's his name, that's his mission, but he does not save us without us. We must respond.
12.11.22 S. Homily: Joy and Patience
Deacon Stephen explains that it the readings today, St. James says, “The farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient with it. You too must be patient…Do not complain about one another, that you may not be judged.” Today’s message is quite clear, “If you want joy, stop trying to control the world.” Let God be God, everything in its proper time–God’s time, not ours.
12.7.22 CCD Homily: Nothing Is Impossible For God
Deacon Stephen teaches the youth that with god, nothing is impossible. No matter how dark, no matter how bad, with God there is always the possibility of redemption, restoration, and healing--and because of that, hope.
12.4.22 S. Homily: God is Just
Deacon Stephen explains that we live in a time when the leaders of homes, of schools, and of governments have become weak. In a misdirected and misunderstood desire to show love and mercy, we have failed to love and teach justice. If we are going to truly love, first justice, then mercy. First the truth of consequences for wrongful actions, and then generosity and support while those consequences are endured. Today’s readings speak of warning, repentance, and consequences. St. Augustine of Hippo said, “Don’t imagine that you love your children when you never discipline them, or that you love your neighbors when you never admonish them. This isn’t love, but mere weakness. Let your love be eager to correct, to reform.” God is love and God is just.
11.30.22 CCD Homily: God is Just
Deacon Stephen explains that we must always be mindful that God is just. God gives to each what is rightfully theirs. Reward to whom reward is due, and consequence to whom consequence is due. Our world often acts unjustly in a desire to love, but love and justice are found perfectly in God.
11.27.22 1st S. Advent Homily: Climb!
Deacon Stephen teaches as we begin Advent, we should be motivated as we begin to climb the Lord’s mountain this year. We should be filled with the hope that marks this first Sunday of Advent–but we must prepare. It sounds amazing to sit in God's presence and enter into His peace, but first we must climb. The Christian life demands focused, concerted effort.
11.24.22 Thanksgiving Day: Give Thanks!
Deacon Stephen teaches true joy begins by thanking God all throughout our day for the blessings of life, children, grandchildren, food on our table, a job, a roof over our head. The leper did it in a loud voice. So should we! Make your faith known to all. St. Paul tells the Thessalonians, “Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances give thanks.” (5:16)
11.20.22 S. Homily: King of the Castle
Deacon Stephen explains that when we recognize Jesus as the king, we are obedient to his voice. Jesus as king comes with implications.
11.16.22 CCD Homily: Obey the King
Deacon Stephen tells the youth that Jesus is the King of the Universe, the king of the castle, and it is to Him that we owe our obedience.
11.13.22 Sun. Homily: Persevere
Deacon Stephen reminds us that Jesus’ point is that we have a tendency to be overly impressed with the things of the earth, and when they are destroyed we are shaken–we’re upset. Today he tells us we should expect difficulty and suffering in this life. He is the way to joy and happiness--not stuff. Stuff will always let us down!
11.9.22 CCD Homily: Courageous
Deacon Stephen speaks to the youth about the importance of being courageous in the faith life.
11.6.22 Sun. Homily: God's Law
Deacon Stephen asks the most important questions, namely, does God’s law, the law of Moses, and the law of the Church matter at all to me? Would I be willing to die, to watch my children die for love of the law? Do I even care about the Law at all? We should. Ignorance of God’s Law is no excuse. There will be a judgment. Which side will we be on? Those who stood for life? For love? For God and God’s laws? Or among those who have no time for God, for our country’s laws, for the unborn, or the poor.
10.23.22 Sun. Homily: Compete Well
Deacon Stephen invites us to look at the end of our life. What difference will you and I have made? Do we ever think about that; what difference our life will have made?
10.16.22 Sun. Homily: What We Need
Deacon Stephen teaches us that God wants us to go to him in prayer. He wants us to be persistent and constant. He wants us to raise our hands to him, and to gather friends around us in prayer on behalf of the world and ourselves, but more than anything, God wants us to be with him forever in heaven–that’s the goal.
10.5.22 CCD Homily: Please and Thank You!
Deacon Stephen tells the youth that the most basic thing in the world is to say please and thank you. To God, that is prayers of petition and thanksgiving...that's Eucharist.
10.2.22 Sun. Homily: Right Relationship
Deacon Stephen explains that faith is the relationship we have with the invisible God--because of our faith we trust and believe in the promises of God in Scripture and through the community of faith. And like any relationship, faith can grow if we nurture it with prayer, reflection, and adoration.
9.28.22 CCD Homily: Do Good, Always
Deacon Stephen explains that our goal is simply to do good! Not because we want a reward, or to avoid punishment, but because it's good to be good. We just servants doing God's will for our lives--humble servants doing God's will.
9.25.22 Sun. Homily: A Great Separation
Deacon Stephen explains that the great separation between Lazarus and the rich man began long before the situation of the parable. The separation began every time the rich man separated himself from those who suffered around him. He created the separation that lasted for eternity...and so do we.
9.21.22 CCD Homily: God Still Calls
Deacon Stephen speaks to the youth of our parish, reminding them that God has not revoked the call to discipleship. He continues to call us to witness to our faith through the gifts we've been given.
9.11.22 Sun. Homily: Would You?
Deacon Stephen asks whether we would be courageous enough, irresponsible enough, or loving enough to go after the one that got away...Jesus does.
9.7.22 CCD Homily: How to Live, How to Love.
Deacon Stephen explains that the Gospels today teach us both how we are called to live, and how we are called to love.
9.4.22 Sun. Homily: Go Play
Too often we try to control what is not ours to control. We are angry or frustrated, scared, or anxious. The book of Wisdom has much to say to us, doesn’t it? There is only one way to have peace in this life–and that, quite simply, is to let go of the wheel and allow God to be the Lord of our Life. It was easy to understand when we were a child–mom and dad got the last word, but as adults we too often forget the important lesson we had learned time and time again as a child; we’re not in charge.
8.28.22 Sun. Homily: Humility
Deacon Stephen talks about the danger of greed. Greed creates a desire in me to have more than what is mine, or what is due to me. Greed causes me to want what is rightfully anothers', and even to plot how I might have it. It was king David’s sin when he first took Uriah’s wife, Bathsheba, and then had Uriah killed in battle. Greed makes me want what is not mine to take, and do what should not be done.
8.21.22 Sun. Homily: Discipline
While in college, I wrote an unpopular essay titled, “Spare the rod, spoil the child.” That saying comes from the Book of Proverbs 13:25, “Whoever spares the rod hates the child, but whoever loves will apply discipline.” Parents and children would do well to read the Book of Proverbs daily–there are some real gems in there. Gems that our parents and grandparents were well-acquainted with, but, sadly, have been lost on our generation–the effects of which are nowadays quite visible.
8.14.22 Sun. Homily: Take Your Stand
I am a Christian today because I like Jesus. I like how he loved people and had a tender heart toward them. I like how he healed people whether he knew them or not. I like how he fed people who were hungry, and I like how he spoke courageously to anyone–religious leader or Roman leader. He didn’t care if you were rich or poor, gentile or Jew, slave or king. He said what was true because, well, it was true. The earthly Jesus was just a good man, a courageous man, he was not afraid of anything or anyone– and I think that’s a pretty good way to live our life, don’t you? I try to live like Jesus. I’m not there yet, but I do try.
8.7.22 Sun. Homily: Be Prepared!
The Gospel we heard today is not meant to instill fear in us, but it should cause us to reflect a bit about the quality of our work in the Lord’s absence. Our Lord Jesus, the Son of man, is a good and generous master too. He has put us in charge of his children, his Church, the earth, and all that is in it.
7.31.22 Sun. Homily: Possessed Much?
Jesus tells the crowd, “Take care to guard against all greed, for though one may be rich, one’s life does not consist of possessions.” I think there are many good people who fall into the trap of letting their possessions, possess them. Amazon Prime, Door Dash, and other immediate delivery services have made it very easy for us to spend our money.
7.24.22 Sun. Homily: A Sinful City
Deacon Stephen explains that the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is not a window through which we judge others, but a mirror in which we reflect on to what degree we are living right, living God's commandments, and striving mightily to remain in the center of his will.
7.3.22 Sun. Homily: Godly Labor
Jesus’ disciples return with great joy, celebrating the power with which they were able to carry out the Lord’s work. The harvest was abundant–there was a lot of work to do–but the laborers were few–it seems there is always a labor shortage both in the Church, and in the world.