Skip to main content

Path To Sunday

First Sunday of Advent

MARK 13:33

Be watchful! Be alert! You do not know when the time will come.

Full Gospel Passage: Mark 13:33-37

Can you believe it? It is only 21 days until Christmas; so much to do, so little time. Thank God Amazon delivers. While Advent is a busy time in which we prepare for Christmas by cleaning, decorating, and shopping, perhaps we should also prepare… just in case Jesus comes back. Can you imagine Christmas morning, Jesus knocking on your door and saying: “I heard you are having a party for my birthday, mind if I join you?” While it may seem far-fetched, we truly don’t know when Jesus is coming back.

He tells us in today’s gospel: “You do not know when the time will come.” If Jesus did come, would we wish that we had more time to prepare? More time to volunteer, more time to help our neighbor, more time to pray, read the bible… anything to prepare for his coming? I doubt we would wish that we had watched more episodes of our favorite TV show or YouTube and TikTok videos. I bet we would wish that we had given Jesus more of our time. We can start by giving our time here at St. James.

- Fr. Paul Stein


  • In the midst of the Christmas bustle, what specific actions or changes can you incorporate into your daily routine to ensure that you are allocating meaningful time to volunteer, help your neighbor, and engage in prayer or scripture to grow your relationship with Jesus?
  • Reflecting on Jesus’ return, what adjustments can you make in your priorities to align more closely with what you would value if Jesus were to arrive unexpectedly, such as dedicating more time to prayer, reading the Bible, and serving your community?

The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe


I say to you, whatever you did for one of the
least brothers of mine, you did for me

Full Gospel Passage: Matthew 25:31-46

In the Sistine Chapel in Rome, where the cardinals meet to choose the next pope, there is a monumental painting of the Last Judgment by Michelangelo. One of the reasons that painting was put there, back in the late 1500s, was to remind the cardinals that they would have to answer to God for the choice they make of the next pope. We too are going to have to answer to God for how we use the gifts he has given us: for self-indulgence, or self-giving.

Our choices and efforts in life matter to God; they have a lasting impact, for good or evil; they do mean something.

One of the greatest theological minds of our time, Cardinal Francis George, gave a famous saying before he died. He said, “The only thing we take with us when we die is what we have given away. The only things that endure are our relationships with God and with each other.” As we conclude the liturgical year, let each of us reflect on how we are living our life remembering the words of Jesus, “Whatsoever you do to the least of my people, you do unto me.”

- Fr. Michael Grzesik


  • How might the powerful symbolism in Michelangelo’s Last Judgment inspire you to bring your choices and responsibilities before God in prayer or seek guidance through Eucharistic adoration?
  • Consider the gifts you give away. How could these offerings deepen your connection with God and others, perhaps finding guidance in the Church’s teachings?
  • Reflect on living out Jesus’ words, “Whatsoever you do to the least of my people, you do unto me.” How can you bring this self-giving spirit to prayer, Eucharistic adoration, or contribute to the mission of the Church?

Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time


Well done, my good and faithful servant.

Full Gospel Passage: Matthew 25:14-30

In the parable of the talents from Matthew chapter 25, we hear the familiar lesson from Jesus about the master who gives his talents (money) to three of his servants. He gave them responsibility over very large amounts of money. Two of the servants were good and prudent stewards who invested the money, but the third buried his treasure out of fear. We are all given treasures by God, who may be asking us through this parable to seriously consider what we are doing with that gift.

Time, talent, and treasure are abundant gifts from a generous God. What does our stewardship look like? Are we imitating God’s generosity in building up others and the Church?

- Fr. Ed Pelrine

Prayer for Reflection

Lord Jesus, teach me to be generous. Teach me to serve as you deserve, To give and not to count the cost, To fight and not to heed the wounds, To labor and not to seek to rest, To give of my self and not ask for a reward, Except the reward of knowing that I am doing your will.

- St. Ignatius of Loyola

Thirty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time


Stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour.

Full Gospel Passage: Matthew 25:1-13

I remember the shock: it was 1995 and I was in college. A classmate with whom I had many classes in high school died at the age of 20. When you are young, you think you are going to live forever; as you get older, you realize time goes quicker than you think. Jesus’ words are just as true today as they were back then: “Stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour.” When I come before the Lord at the end of my life – which could be any day – what will I tell him that I did with all the earthen treasures that he entrusted to my care?

After all, he created the world; everything ultimately belongs to him. Did I freely and gladly return to him what is already his? Did I give of my treasure to the poor and to the Church? It is one thing to bequeath my money after I die and it is no longer any good to me, it is another to lovingly give it away now. I hope to love Jesus intensely now by giving back my treasure so that I may ultimately have treasure in heaven.

- Fr. Paul Stein


  • How am I presently stewarding the earthly treasures entrusted to me by God, considering the transient nature of life?
  • How can I more actively share my treasures with the needy and support the Church, embodying a spirit of selfless generosity in the present?

Thirty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time


You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.

Full Gospel Passage: Matthew 23:1-12

We read today Christ rebuking the Pharisees and the practice of their priestly work for the gratification of themselves to be seen by others as being holy. They took the opportunity to show their piousness by expanding their phylacteries (small leather pouch or box that carried the law) and lengthening their tassels. They wore the façade of holiness yet were all too eager to accept places of honor at banquets, seats of honor in synagogues, greetings in marketplaces, and the salutation ‘Rabbi.’ They were not living their purpose to shepherd the people of Israel back to God but expand their influence and status, as well as their material comfort and benefit. As a result, there were factions within the Jewish community that purported to know the fullness of the law and that if the Jewish people wanted to be truly faithful they should follow them.

Christ shows us how we are to avoid those pitfalls and look to Him and His Church: Call no one on earth your father; you have but one Father in heaven. Do not be called ‘Master’; you have but one master, the Christ. The greatest among you must be your servant. Following Christ and knowing Him personally is what we long for. He is the way the truth and the life and He’s given us a Church that provides us with Sacraments, moments to experience an outward sign of inward graces, to experience Him and His unending love for us. We are called to move towards Him, not to tie ourselves to worldly vices that detract from Him. To move as siblings in Christ building up His church and inviting souls outside the Christian family to join us. The parish today is the primary vehicle we can achieve that, and providing the parish with our talent, treasure, and time and seeing that those three “t’s” belong to God helps us move the mission of the Church forward, to make disciples of all nations.


  • When have you placed appearances and worldly recognition ahead of genuine faith and service, as the Pharisees did?
  • How can you invest your time, talents, and resources to strengthen your Christian community and the Church’s mission?
  • In what practical ways can you ensure your material wealth is used to strengthen the Church’s mission and deepen your connection with Christ while avoiding worldly distractions?

Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time


You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.

In the gospel passage from Matthew 22:34-40, we are presented with a profound encounter between Jesus and a scholar of the law, who, in a quest to test the Lord, inquires about the paramount commandment within the divine law. In response, Jesus imparts divine wisdom, offering a succinct yet deeply profound answer: "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments."

These words encapsulate the very heart of Christian spirituality. The first commandment underscores the supreme importance of our sacred connection with God, emphasizing that loving Him with the entirety of our being is a call to complete surrender, unwavering devotion, and steadfast faith. It's a reminder that our talents and gifts are divine blessings that should be used to serve Him and His Church.

The second commandment redirects our focus to the world around us, admonishing us to extend the love we bear for ourselves to our fellow siblings in Christ. In doing so, we're also called to share our talents and gifts with others, providing Christ and His Church with our unique abilities and skills. By serving our neighbors and the Church, we become instruments of God's love in the world.


  • How am I currently utilizing my God-given talents and gifts to serve both the Church and my fellow siblings in Christ?
  • In what ways can I deepen my love for God with the entirety of my being, and how does this devotion influence the use of my talents in His service?
  • As I consider the call to love my neighbor as myself, what specific actions can I take to better share my unique abilities and skills with others, becoming a more profound instrument of God’s love in the world?
Put This Reflection Into Action

Give of your talents by contributing to the Liturgy of the Mass by joining a choir or serving as an usher or a greeter.

Contact Tamaron Conseur, Director of Music and Liturgy to get involved

Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time


Then repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.

In today’s Gospel reading, Jesus tells us: “repay to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.” It is, in a sense, a trick question. To be sure, the government has its area of responsibility, so do pay your taxes, stop at red lights, and don’t be a terrorist. But what belongs to God? God created the universe out of nothing; it is His. The government must conform itself to God’s laws.

In our lives, we can be tempted to compartmentalize, thinking that we give God His hour on Sunday, but the rest of the week is ours. We tend to think that we can volunteer for a parish group such as St. Vincent de Paul, and then spend the rest of our time the way we want. We should volunteer and we do have other things to do.

Yet, when we volunteer, we are not giving to God and the Church community like we give to Caesar. We are giving back to God what is already, truly His.


  • Do I isolate Church contributions, like volunteering, or see them as returning what’s already God’s?
  • In using my talents, am I aware they belong to God, actively considering contributions beyond specific times or activities for His service?
  • Am I restricting my devotion to God to certain times or activities, instead of recognizing everything as His?
Join us for our Mass livestream Watch Online