Bishop Barron’s Sunday Sermons - Catholic Preaching and Homilies
Stand Strong in the Spirit

Stand Strong in the Spirit

September 27, 2022

Friends, this week, our second reading is from Paul’s Second Letter to Timothy. From prison, Paul writes to Timothy—the master to the disciple, the mentor to the mentee, the old soldier to the young soldier—and tells him to have courage, but to attach his courage to the weapons of wisdom and love. When one stands courageously, with wisdom, with love, with all the gifts of the Holy Spirit, then one is able to face down the powers of the world. When we try to fight them on their own terms, we try to conquer evil with evil, we make no progress toward the kingdom of God.

How Are You Caring for the Poor?

How Are You Caring for the Poor?

September 20, 2022

Friends, Pope Benedict XVI memorably said that the Church does three essential things: it evangelizes, it worships God, and it cares for the poor. This week, the words of Amos the prophet and Jesus’ parable of Lazarus and the rich man are meant to put us on the hook when it comes to the third task. How much do we care for those who are poor? Are we living lives of self-preoccupation and self-indulgence while our own brothers and sisters are suffering and starving at our gate?

Don’t Demonize—or Divinize—the Powerful

Don’t Demonize—or Divinize—the Powerful

September 13, 2022

Friends, the first and second readings this Sunday beautifully show both sides of Catholic social teaching: the balance between recognizing political, economic, and social power, and criticizing the abuse of that power. We should not demonize our leaders; we pray for them, and we recognize their importance. But we should not divinize them either; we are deeply aware of the ways that their power can be corrupted.

God Is Crazy in Love with You

God Is Crazy in Love with You

September 6, 2022

Friends, in this Sunday’s Gospel, we encounter the infinite, extravagant, radical love of the Creator for his creation. Jesus paints for us, in three parables, a portrait of God: he is, if I can borrow that lovely phrase from Catherine of Siena, “pazzo d’amore”—crazy in love with us, including the lost sheep and the prodigal sons.

The Fair-Weather Fans of Jesus

The Fair-Weather Fans of Jesus

August 30, 2022

Friends, there are a lot of people today who might be intrigued by Jesus. They find him interesting, remember him as a spiritual teacher, or have warm feelings about him. But in today’s Gospel, Jesus is saying to his fair-weather fans—those who are following him because he’s fascinating and charismatic—that being his disciple is not a walk in the park; it is something of supreme spiritual and moral importance.

Act Against Your Attachments

Act Against Your Attachments

August 23, 2022

Friends, at the heart of what St. Ignatius of Loyola teaches in the “Spiritual Exercises” is the idea of detachment. If we are to do the will of God, then we have to become detached from the worldly goods to which we are addicted. A basic principle of this detachment is “agere contra,” which is Latin simply for “to act against.” The idea is simple: if you are attached or addicted to some worldly good, then the best thing is to act against it—to press, aggressively even, in the opposite direction.

How Many Will Be Saved?

How Many Will Be Saved?

August 16, 2022

Friends, I am admittedly a bit reluctant to talk about the topic of our Gospel for today—namely, this famously controversial matter of how many will be saved. I have talked a lot and written a lot about this issue, and people have very strong opinions about it: everybody will be saved, only a handful will be saved, and everything in between. There is a lot of energy around this question. In this homily, I would like to get at the question in a new and fresh way by looking at Jesus’ answer in the Gospel.

Let Christ Light a Fire in You

Let Christ Light a Fire in You

August 9, 2022

Friends, the readings for this weekend are tough. Here is the principle behind them, one that is simple to state, but difficult to take in: in a world gone wrong, those who come to us speaking and embodying the truth are going to be opposed. In our first reading from Jeremiah and in Jesus’ harsh, challenging message in the Gospel, we encounter the disruptive, burning, cleansing quality of authentic religion.

Go on a Hero’s Journey

Go on a Hero’s Journey

August 2, 2022

Friends, Joseph Campbell and, more recently, Jordan Peterson are very interested in the Jungian archetype of the hero's journey. We see it all over the literature of the world and popular culture, from "The Lord of the Rings" to “Star Wars." But it is also on display very strongly in the Bible. In our remarkable second reading from the Letter to the Hebrews, the author reflects on faith as a sense of trust in God and a willingness to follow him on adventure—in short, as accepting the invitation to a hero’s journey.

You Can’t Take It With You

You Can’t Take It With You

July 25, 2022

Friends, all three of our readings Sunday speak of a primordial spiritual truth—namely, the need to detach oneself from the goods of the world. This has nothing to do with a hatred of the world or a puritanical spirituality of flight from the world; rather, it has to do with knowing how to wear the goods of the world lightly. These goods—wonderful as they are—all finally crumble, evanesce, and disappear; they are not our ultimate good, and we are not meant to cling to them as though they were.

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App