Deacon's Corner


Published in the St. Mary's Church Bulletin 

Week Of Jan. 14th, 2018- 

   Instructions on preparing the night before to put the next pinball in play (Examen). 1st invite the Holy Spirit: "Come, Holy Spirit to help me and to guide me". 2nd put on an attitude of gratitude by reflecting on the many things to be thankful for that day. 3rd replay the day in your head and see where internal lights went on when you acted and where you missed opportunities to put internal lights on by not taking some action. 4th take time to consider the next day and how you might approach it differently to encounter more of God's light (personal epiphanies) and talk it out with God (spontaneous prayer). Finally, close by slowly saying a vocal prayer that places yourself into the hands of God (e.g. Our Father). Follow these steps daily and you will soon, with the grace of God, become a spiritual "pinball wizard".
~Deacon Dennis Donahue


Published in the St. Mary's Church Bulletin 

Week Of Jan. 7th, 2018- 

   In the 1990's I attended a lecture by Fr. Adrian Van Kaam, a noted theologian and psychologist. There I first heard the idea of a personal epiphany which his colleague described as an aha experience in our spiritual life. In psychology, an aha experience is defined as an emotional response when something previously baffling becomes expectantly realized or comprehended.

Over the years, I have come to find that these little guiding lights happen quite frequently in our spiritual journey if we simple spend a few minutes a day in spiritual reading, silent listening and emotional examen. If you have not regularly tried this set of simply practices in your day, do so for 7 consecutive days and let me know if it triggers personal epiphanies for you.
~Deacon Dennis Donahue



Published in the St. Mary's Church Bulletin 

Week Of Dec. 31st, 2017- 

   Jesus is born and there are a folks who have been waiting anxiously to meet him. Both Simeon and Anna are righteous and devout having stayed close to the temple and faithful to the worship of God. As a result, they can easily recognize Christ when he comes even in the guise of a helpless infant. As we begin this new calendar year what might you do to draw closer to the Church and deeper in your faith so that you can recognize Christ more assuredly when he appears to you in many guises in your daily life?
~Deacon Dennis Donahue



Published in the St. Mary's Church Bulletin 

Week Of Dec. 24th, 2017- 

   This Sunday morning we hear the annunciation of the angel Gabriel to Mary and this Sunday evening we hear at the Christmas Vigil the annunciation by an unnamed angel to Joseph in a dream. Both Mary and Joseph respond quickly and affirmatively to God's messenger and message regardless of method. Yet, Zechariah, a priest and holy man, only a few months earlier is struck dumb for second guessing God's unnamed messenger who delivers in person. What seems to be the difference in these three situations is Mary and Joseph discern with the heart while Zechariah wants to discern with the mind. Being struck dumb he is then been force to listen with the ear of the heart and is therefore able to respond appropriately. We must learn to listen with the ear of a well trained heart if we wish to hear God's message and respond affirmatively in God's time.
~Deacon Dennis Donahue



Published in the St. Mary's Church Bulletin 

Week Of Dec. 10th, 2017- 

   Today we hear the opening words of Mark's Gospel. It was the first of the four Gospel books to be written and as you see it contained no nativity scene but rather presents us right up front with the Good News of Jesus Christ "the Son of God". In this New Church Year and Year of the Eucharist we focus on Mark's Gospel where more often Jesus humanity as "the Son of Man" is presented as he follows the will of the Father for the greater glorify of God. At the same time Mark shows the less then perfect and one could say quite flawed faith of Jesus disciples not as discouragement but rather a encouragement to the faith community under persecution for bringing others to Christ in the Eucharist. During this Advent season let's make it our mission in spite of our own flaws to bring one fallen away Catholic back to the table of Christ this Christmas!
~Deacon Dennis Donahue



Published in the St. Mary's Church Bulletin 

Week Of Dec. 3rd, 2017- 

   HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! "So what New Year's Resolution have you made in this Year of the Eucharist?" "Oh, you forgot, well let me suggest something I read about last week in The Word Among Us; giving presence to God in our hectic life!" It is really simple. 1st pick a daily time and place free from distraction where you can be quiet with God. 2nd when you enter that special place consider all the marvelous things God has done in your life. Finally, pray simply the words "Lord, show me that you are with me" and wait. We know God is ever present and this resolution, if practiced consistently, will over time help you recognize how near God truly is through the consolation increasingly feel in God’s presence.
~Deacon Dennis Donahue



Published in the St. Mary's Church Bulletin 

Week Of Nov. 26th, 2017- 

   This morning Cindy was clearing off a cupboard and I asked her what she was doing? Her answer was "making room for Jesus!" She was getting ready to put out the manger scene. On this the last Sunday of the Church Year we are asked to think about Last Things as a way to consider what we need to clear off in our life in "making room for Jesus" in the upcoming Advent and New Church Year. Take time this week to consider resolutions you may make starting next Sunday to become a more fit missionary disciple of Christ.
~Deacon Dennis Donahue



Published in the St. Mary's Church Bulletin 

Week Of Nov. 19th, 2017- 

   We continue where last week's Gospel ended with another parable on watchfulness and preparedness. This week's parable focuses more on being prepared by applying the "talents" the Master has given us in a way that we provide a positive return on His investment. Next week's Gospel picks up where today's Gospel ends and speaks to us of the Last Judgement; completing Jesus fifth and final discourse as we celebrate the final Sunday in this Church Year. Take this week to considered all that God has given you in your life and what account you can give for a return on investment. Then consider if it is time to rebalance your portfolio of time, talent and treasure more in favor of God as you begin the New Year in the Church in two weeks.
~Deacon Dennis Donahue