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Justice Perspective: The four verbs of welcoming strangers
Fri, Jan 12th 2018 01:05 pm
Happy New Year! That greeting resounds among friends, acquaintances, coworkers and even strangers. It lasts for more than just the day, and continues through much of the month of January as a wish for health, happiness and good fortune through the coming year.
Cultural Diversity: Many Journeys, One Family
Fri, Jan 12th 2018 10:00 am
This year, National Migration Week is from Jan. 7-14. This week has been celebrated in the Catholic Church in the United States for over 50 years. It gives us an opportunity to reflect on the circumstances confronting migrants, immigrants, refugees, children and victims and survivors of human trafficking.
Making a Difference: Game of North Korean-American brinkmanship
Sat, Dec 30th 2017 06:00 am
Remember the game of chicken? It's a foolishly high-stakes challenge in which two drivers, risking death, drive on a collision course towards each other until one of the drivers chooses to swerve away.
Taking Flight Dinner to benefit FICE on March 8
Wed, Dec 27th 2017 10:00 am
Growing up, my parents instilled in my three brothers and me that our Catholic faith was not what you do on Sundays, it's who you are. It is the constant celebration of the value of goodness, and this has had a profound influence on the way I think, behave and act.
Discovering God in the unexpected
Sun, Dec 24th 2017 06:00 am
Even the most avid of readers might pick up a book that intrigues them, and desire so badly to get into the book that they skip the preface. If we skip the preface during the Christmas season, we might miss the heart of the Christmas message. In St. John's Gospel, the well-known preface says, "The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us." God, who existed before time, broke through both time and space, and entered humanity. In Jesus, God became manifest as He revealed Himself in a complete way.
The ways we connect with the meaning of Christmas
Thu, Dec 21st 2017 08:00 am
Between Advent and all of the preparations for Christmas, December becomes one of the busiest months of the year, especially for a parish staff. Some believe that all of the happenings and "to-dos" distract us from the true meaning of the season. But I think that the true meaning of Christmas is made even more real by the very experiences we sometimes take for granted or that might even seem like distractions. For example: given the choice between watching a Christmas movie with all my cousins or taking time alone in prayer, I am hands down going to choose movie time. Even though prayer is an important part of spiritual preparation, time with family is a blessing and a reminder of how close to God we can be. The festivities we look forward to, the food we eat, and the family we see are experiences that help us fully realize an inward, spiritual celebration that builds with anticipation during Advent and that we celebrate on Christmas.
An angel and a star - shepherds and Magi
Sun, Dec 17th 2017 08:00 am
What's on the top of your Christmas tree: an angel or a star? And what would the Christmas scene be like if we only had Luke's Gospel? Or only Matthew's? Only Luke has the angel appearing to the shepherds, while only Matthew has the star leading the Magi.
Justice Perspective: Christmas can still change the world
Sat, Dec 16th 2017 08:00 am
As our season of Advent begins, it almost seems like we are late to the party. After all, Christmas has been a part of what has surrounded us in our culture for weeks already. We have lived through Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday, and on and on. We have been bombarded with Christmas music, Christmas movies, Christmas party invitations, Christmas sales and Christmas decorations.
Bishop Malone: Reflecting on an Irish pilgrimage
Sun, Dec 10th 2017 08:00 am
"What was the best part of your pilgrimage to Ireland?" I've heard that question a dozen times since our return from the "land of saints and scholars." The short answer is, the simple fact that I finally got there, for the first time, and just months before my 72nd birthday. Too long a wait, to be sure, but well worth it in every way. It was a truly blessed journey of faith and prayer, joy and beauty, history and ... fun.
Cultural Diversity: Make straight the way of the Lord
Sat, Dec 9th 2017 08:00 am
Advent is a time for us to prepare for the joy of the birth of our Savior. John the Baptist came to announce the coming of our Messiah and said, "I am the voice that is crying out in the desert; make straight the way of the Lord."
Collection provides needed support to religious congregations
Fri, Dec 8th 2017 08:00 am
For 30 years, the National Religious Retirement Fund has provided much-needed financial assistance for religious congregations. During those years, the generous donors in the Diocese of Buffalo have contributed more than $25 million to assist women and men religious with the care of retired members, who ordinarily have no pension and minimal Social Security benefits.
Making a Difference: After 50 years of Israeli occupation, enough is enough
Sun, Nov 26th 2017 08:00 am
Fifty years is a long time to endure forced suffering.
Justice Perspective: Open your eyes to the sin of racism
Sat, Nov 25th 2017 08:00 am
You may have seen the movie "Hidden Figures" (and if you haven't, you should). It's the story of a team of female African-American mathematicians who served a vital role in NASA during the early years of the U.S. space program. It is a story not only of their talent and their ability to overcome obstacles, but also of the challenges and roadblocks that African-Americans (especially women) faced in the early '60s.
Called to communion with the entire community of saints
Sun, Nov 19th 2017 08:00 am
While many people lament the problems caused by the use of social media, there are countless pearls of wisdom that are shared every day on outlets such as Facebook and Twitter. While often the platform for instant news, political rants and the need people have to put themselves out there, inspiration can also be found in cyberspace. A recent tweet by Pope Francis was an attention getter. The pope tweeted, "Our contagious joy must be our first testimony of the closeness and love of God."
Genesis re-enacted: blessings over food and recycling
Sat, Nov 18th 2017 08:00 am
Rabbinic Jewish writings present their understanding of God and of our lives. Read what they write on the purpose of pronouncing a blessing/thanksgiving over food. Their insight occurs in a discussion of an apparent conflict between two Scripture verses.
Bishop Malone: A Time for Gratitude
Tue, Nov 7th 2017 11:00 am
If each of the months of the year were assigned a quality, it might be said that March is lucky and July is independent, but November is always grateful. Although the Thanksgiving holiday comes at the end of November, it lends an atmosphere of gratitude to the entire month. This month also marks the end of the Church's liturgical year, while the calendar year begins the last stretch toward the finish line. Thus, it is a fitting time to reflect on all that we have to be thankful for.
National Vocation Awareness Week celebrated in diocese
Fri, Nov 3rd 2017 03:00 pm
Each year, the month of November is an exciting time for the Vocations Office and the Catholic communities of the United States, because it brings the National Vocation Awareness Week, which will occur from Nov. 5-11 this year.
Cultural Diversity: Listen to what Jesus has to say
Fri, Nov 3rd 2017 02:00 pm
Last month, the Office of Cultural Diversity's African-American Commission brought in the well-known national speaker Father Tony Ricard from New Orleans. He is a tremendous storyteller as well as a comedian. He had the assembly roaring in laughter at times. His message was challenging and spiritually uplifting. It was an awesome three nights.
Sound Board: Gifts from God come with four legs and tail
Fri, Nov 3rd 2017 12:15 pm
Hope and Hudson. They are two of the most important words in my life.
Pondering with God's Word: Miryam, beloved leader and prophet of the wilderness community
Fri, Nov 3rd 2017 12:00 pm
One can wonder if Mary of Nazareth had a "patron saint." If so, was it Miryam of the wilderness account? One can never know, but the questions lead to a reflection on Miryam's biblical portrait.
Recognizing God is the beauty that is within and around us
Thu, Nov 2nd 2017 03:00 pm
American poet Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "Beauty is the handwriting of God." During a much earlier time period, St. Augustine said, "Late have I loved you, beauty so ancient, and so new; late have I loved you." In these magnificent quotes, the sacred and secular intersect and invite not only insight into God who is complete beauty, but also contemplation on God, who is love.
Making a Difference: Catholic Church is journeying back to its nonviolent roots
Tue, Oct 31st 2017 02:00 pm
The Catholic Church preaches, teaches and practices total nonviolence.
Cultural Diversity: The Spirit of the Lord is Upon Me
Tue, Oct 24th 2017 09:00 am
On July 7-9, close to 40 delegates from Buffalo went to the National Black Catholic Congress XII in Orlando, Fla. They are especially grateful to the Foundation of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Buffalo, who made it possible for them to attend.
Bishop Malone: World Mission Sunday
Mon, Oct 16th 2017 09:00 am
On World Mission Sunday, October 22, our celebration leads us to hear of our Christian faith - leads us to mission, as Pope Francis explains in his message for this year's celebration.
Bishop Malone: Fatima is the Miracle and the Message
Fri, Oct 6th 2017 04:00 pm
The recent solar eclipse reminded me of another celestial event of a very unique and enduring nature. As you may know, the Church has been celebrating the centennial of the Fatima Apparitions from November 27th of 2016 through November 26th of this year. It was 100 years ago this October 13th that the "Miracle of the Sun" occurred in a field in rural Portugal. This was the last of six apparitions made by Our Lady to three shepherd children - Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta.
Justice Perspective: Love your neighbor, share the journey
Fri, Oct 6th 2017 09:00 am
Since the beginning of his pontificate, Pope Francis has issued a call to create a culture of encounter, and to look beyond our own needs and wants to those of others around us. In the homily given at his first Pentecost as pope, he emphasized the importance of encounter in the Christian faith: "For me, this word is very important - encounter with others. Why? Because faith is an encounter with Jesus, and we must do what Jesus does: encounter others."
Pondering with God's Word: Seastorms in the Gospel and in daily life
Sat, Sep 30th 2017 06:00 am
Summer in Western New York finds marine forecasts on local weather reports. As local boaters know, serious storms can come up suddenly on Lake Erie. When I hear storm predictions, I am reminded of my own experiences with lake storms and of fear in the face of uncontrollable nature.
A retreatant's reflections on the Spiritual Exercises in Daily Life
Thu, Sep 28th 2017 08:00 am
What is it like to have peace within? What is it like to know God loves you regardless of your faults? What is it like to love God, to know Him more and want to do His will?
Called to Abundant Life: Moving from welcome to accompaniment
Sat, Sep 23rd 2017 08:00 am
Fall is naturally a time of new beginnings and excitement in many households as children return to school or begin school for the first time, young adults are off to college, and parishes launch their complete schedule of ministries. New beginnings and welcomes mark this time of the year, and at the heart of it all, there is hope for all the future holds. Words of welcome and welcome back echo through these days.
Sound Board: Music be the food of love, life and faith
Fri, Sep 22nd 2017 03:15 pm
Music, a universal language. It evokes thoughts, feelings, and memories. For teenagers, music is an essential part of life. We listen to music while we get ready for school, do homework, or when we are just relaxing. As I have grown, my music choices have developed as well. There are also special songs that I will always remember and love, like "This Town" by Niall Horan or "Caroline" by Amine. When I hear certain songs from my childhood it brings back memories from church, and suddenly I am 7 years old again sitting with my family in our favorite pew.
Making a Difference: Over 20 million people facing starvation - and we should care
Tue, Sep 19th 2017 08:00 am
Think to a time when you were hungry. Remember how it felt, a bit uncomfortable, right? You may have even said, "I'm starving!" But you knew that in a short time the next meal would be there for you. Knowing that a good meal was awaiting you allowed your slight hunger to actually whet your appetite.
Justice Perspective: Stand in support of DREAMers
Fri, Sep 15th 2017 02:00 pm
Parents will do just about anything for their children. Sacrifice is a quality that seems built into being a parent, and protecting your children from danger, suffering, or threats to their life and well-being is both natural and expected.
Bishop Malone: Hope amid an epidemic of violence
Fri, Sep 15th 2017 08:00 am
Turku, Finland. Barcelona and Cambrils, Spain. Charlottesville, Virginia. Stockholm, Sweden. Paris, France. Manchester and London, England. The Middle East, Africa ... and Buffalo. There are so much more, just in recent months, including 3,000 preborn children's lives snuffed out through abortion every day in the United States.
Strangers No Longer: Together on the Journey of Faith
Wed, Sep 13th 2017 10:00 am
Jesus was a refugee and friend of outcasts. What about you and me? Will we dare to follow in Jesus' footsteps?
Cultural Diversity: Celebrations of our unity in Christ
Sat, Sep 9th 2017 08:00 am
Over the next couple of months, we have plenty of opportunities to experience celebrations and times of worship from the various cultures we have in our diocese. We all know that, in the wake of all that has happened in Charlottesville, we must turn to our Lord in prayer for peace in our country. It is important that we all come together to pray for each other, and with each other. The Lord calls us to love one another as he loves us.
There is much to applaud in our diocesan schools
Mon, Sep 4th 2017 09:00 am
As we begin the 2017-2018 school year, there is much to applaud. Our 2017 graduates garnered almost $4 million in high school scholarships, and our high school graduates secured over $300 million in college awards. We expect no less of the Class of 2018.
Called to Abundant Life: Summer is a time for living the Gospel
Mon, Aug 28th 2017 09:00 am
Summer picnics and family get-togethers, walks in the park and at Canalside, ice cream and lemonade, parish festivals, and taking time to enjoy the sunset over Lake Erie - all are hallmarks of the season in Western New York. Undoubtedly, the deep refreshment and relaxation of summer are things for which everyone yearns. With the waning days of this precious season soon approaching, and in the heart of our "ordinary time" in the Church, the Sunday Gospels of August give us pause to consider our faith as a source of refreshment.
Evangelization: What's a Catholic for?
Wed, Aug 23rd 2017 08:00 am
Pope Francis calls us to be "missionary disciples." In recent messages, he speaks of a "new" evangelization and two notions that to some ears sound opposite: a missionary (someone who is sent away) and disciples (called to accompany, or be with, those who are near). Which is it?
Cultural Diversity: The Spirituality of Marriage and Family
Sat, Aug 19th 2017 06:00 am
This year's Hispanic Family Day at Fatima Shrine is on Aug. 26. The theme of the day is, "The Spirituality of Marriage and Family." The celebrant for the 10 a.m. Mass will be Father Erick Viloria, from the Diocese of Rochester, who will also speak at the 1 p.m. workshop on the section of "Amoris Laetitia" that we chose for the theme of the day.
From the Bishop: A Book review or three
Wed, Aug 16th 2017 10:00 am
As I write this column, I am in Massachusetts, the "land of my birth," where I have been blessed to step out of the whirlwind for a few quiet summer days of R and R. I should add a third R to Rest and Relaxation, as a vacation priority for me always is to catch up on Reading.