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June 1, 2008: God from the Inside Out - Fr. Satish

Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sunday Mass Readings

I heard two contrasting stories on National Public Radio this week. One showed the superficiality of our culture, the other the depth of the human heart. I heard a rather lengthy commentary on some Iraqi women’s sense of freedom in Iraq. It was the criterion that was used to measure freedom that baffled me – that in some part of Iraq women could now use make-up. I see all you lovely ladies here and some of you with make-up and you look beautiful. But you know and I that if our sense of security and freedom had to come from our make-up that would be rather superficial. When it is all said and done, make-up is exactly that – make-up. And then I heard another commentary. It was the story of a man who came to the United States from India when he was seven years old. He is now the Hindu priest of the Hare Krishna temple in New York. His own quest for the meaning of life began with a simple question - What is the cause of the uncertainties or fluctuations of life? And then he picked up the Bhagvad Gita – one of the main Hindu Scriptures. In them, he found his answers. It changed his life. He built his life around the answers he discovered and now he tries to help others to find their own answers. These two stories are contrasting examples of people’s search for meaning and purpose of life.

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May 25, 2008: Broken for the World - Fr. Satish

Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

Today's Mass Readings

If you have been to the groceries lately you may have noticed that the price of food items has risen enough to make us think twice about what and how much we buy. What we in more stable countries perceive as a price rise is only a symptom of what the United Nations has warned to be a serious food crisis. For example, food prices have risen by an average of 83% in the past three years. At least 100 million people could be tipped into poverty as a result. Food riots have broken out in at least a dozen countries. A range of factors have been blamed, including poor harvests, partly due to climate change, rising oil prices, the dash to produce biofuels at the expense of food crops, and speculation on commodities markets. The fact that there is much money to be made at the cost of other people prompted Jean Ziegler , a UN's official to comment, "This is silent mass murder." It is my opinion that our inability to banish hunger is a grave collective sin and that providing food security to the poor of the world would in itself be a great act of evangelization.

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May 18, 2008: The Fourth Dimension - Fr. Satish

The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity

Today's Mass Readings

Even at this moment humanity is dealing with two catastrophic natural disasters: the cyclone in Myanmar and the earthquake in China. I have to confess that I have had a difficult time dealing with the death of over one hundred thousand people in two weeks just to natural disasters. I have been afraid to look at pictures of the disasters. The one picture I did see was a naked and decaying dead body in the middle of an inundated rice field. “This body is made in the image and likeness of God,” I said to myself. There was a repulsion in me to even think that a holy thing like that should lie so desolate and so decadent. Of course, this is not the first time that the world has been affected by natural disasters of such magnitude. But as I read the readings for today – the feast of the Holy Trinity - I have struggled all week to reconcile these human tragedies with “God” who “loves the world so much that he gave his only Son…” (Jn 3:16). The question, then, is about making sense of human life as we experience it in relation to the life and nature of God.

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May 11, 2008: Babel Unplugged - Fr. Satish

Pentecost Sunday

Today's Mass Readings

Last Tuesday evening I was invited to a banquet organized by the National Youth Advocate Program, where I was to speak to foster parents of children who need critical care. There was a small group of wonderful people who in an act of overwhelming generosity take into their homes children who otherwise no one would want. They take in juvenile sex-offenders, critically ill children, and even children with serious psychological problems. While my talk was addressed to the foster parents I was totally unaware of who I was actually reaching. Two days later, I received a phone call that one of the staff at the Program was returning to mass after fifteen years. The Holy Spirit of God is still alive and working in our midst. The Holy Spirit works in ways we can never imagine. On this the feast of the Pentecost I believe the Spirit is truly alive in our midst.

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May 4, 2008: I Am With You Always... - Fr. Satish

Feast of the Ascension of Jesus

Today's Mass Readings

I studied in the seminary twelve years before I was ordained in the year 1994. About half way through the studies, I confronted a situation with the seminary’s rector which disillusioned me. It will take me too long to explain the situation but it will suffice to say that I realized that the rector’s stand on the matter was dishonest and unjust. I wanted to be a priest but was also aware that if I opposed the rector I would probably be shown the door for being rebellious. I decided that I would quit my seminary training rather than face such problems. I decided to write to my parents about my dilemma. It was mother who wrote back. She said I was welcome back home and that they would support my education. The very last line of the letter was really what decided my future course of action. She wrote, “No matter what you decision, I am with you.” I read that sentence again and again. I needed the reassurance. I could go back home because my parents were so supportive. But finally this is what I said to myself. “If my mother is with me then I am going to go ahead and continue my studies inspite of the problems.” The words “I am with you…” gave me the courage to face the situation rather than escape it. Those four words… they didn’t’ change the situation, but they changed me... changed me enough to face the situation and here I am.

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