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Recent Homilies

Reflections on Faith

Conversion Stories

Ask the Deacon

Suggested Links

Deacon Tom's Website: Homiletically Challenging -- Passionately Catholic.
(With apologies to my friends at Franciscan University in Steubenville, OH)

NEW! NEW!.... Look for Deacon Tom on the wonderful Catholic Family Website hosted by David and Allyson Sweeney. You can find them at www.catholicfamilypodcast.com -- and be sure to listen to David and Allyson on your computer, or your IPOD, or MP3 player. The Sweeneys offer a view of Catholic Family living as seen from the right....

Now read Deacon Tom at CatholicMom.com!

Homily Library

Oftentimes I am asked for copies of homilies. Here are some of the more popular ones, and I hope they touch your heart as they have touched others. If you would like to contact me, you can email me at ask@deacontomonline.com.

Vocation Awareness - People in need are helped by priests; priests in the making are helped by families who are close to Christ and the Church.

Lazarus and the Rich Man - How many poor people or babies will you help to save? Deacon Tom says we'll never know here.

What to Say? - 250 People attend Mass; Deacon Tom tries to speculate why they came and what to preach about

Intercessory Prayer - Boy Scouts are taught what it means to be an Intercessory Prayer partner for others

Lord Save Me - A young girl makes some bad choices in life & talks to a priest and learns about bad pennies.

Corpus Christi - Boy Scouts Learn About Corpus Christi: The Body and Blood of Christ

Pentecost - In the Upper Room there was damaged faith and wounded love. What the Spirit brought with Him was HOPE.

Tough Love - This weekend our readings and theme are about love. Deacon Tom was led to speak on Tough Love: fidelity to our bishops and schismatic behavior in Catholics.

Which Sunday is it? - Let's see: is it Vocation Sunday? No? Well is it Good Shepherd Sunday? Oh I give up. Just Tell me.

Easter Sunday - Are you a casual tourist about this Christ is risen stuff? Or are you a pilgrim on the way to Emmaus? Join Tom for this Easter 2010 homily.

Palm Sunday - On the day of Palms and Hosannahs, Jesus wasn't journeying into victory -- he was entering the brokenness and betrayals of Jews and Gentiles, apostles and disciples... and our own failings. Yet Jesus tells His Mother, ''Look, I make all things new.''

Humility - My name is Fr. Patrick J. O'Doherty and I'm a Recovering Sinner. Sound interesting? Check this homily by Deacon Tom for the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time.

The Epiphany - Imagine yourself as one of the Magi. What gift are you bringing to the Christ Child? Join Deacon Tom for this Epiphany Homily!

John the Baptist - Christ doesn't need quiet Christians. Nor Christians who blend in? Nor Christians who don't rock the boat. Words from this Sunday's homily on the call to become John the Baptist in our own lives.

The End is Coming - 245,000,000 hits on a search for END TIMES. Better to spend time with Jesus in the Eucharist rather than worrying about the end of your life or the end of the world. Even though it's coming to the end of our Liturgical Year.

What to do - The young man says, "Master, What Should I Do To Inherit Eternal Life?" There's a lot of lessons for us in this Sunday Gospel.

Look to the Cross - It's 3 AM and the baby is awake again. How does a tired mom react? Check in on this Sunday's homily message.

No Wonder They Call It the Real Presence - About Eucharistic Adoration

Scouting for the Lord's Presence - Jesus speaks to His Apostles and to 50 Boy Scouts

Divine Mercy Sunday - Who am I to offer the Father His only Son, Jesus? Only in Divine Mercy is this possible.

Jesus' Easter Message? - Go...Pay It Forward!

Teaching Us - The Old and the New Testaments Teach Us of Christ

Rembrandt and Reconciliation - The Return of the Prodigal Son

Jesus is Coming - Get Busy.

The Pope - A broken priest hears the pope's confession -- This is a repeat of an earlier story that has moved many. And it's timely again as we begin Advent.

All Souls - walking among the dead... and taking life into the voting booth

Respect Life - Truth and Sister Briege & Oprah Winfrey

Pro Life - In Your LIFE -- What are the Non-Negotiables? A teaching on the Five Non Negotiables for Catholics.

God's Vineyard - Visiting California Wine Country and God's Vineyard

Relationships - Biblical Teachings for Healing of Relationships

Pro Life - Without Life -- Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness Aren't Possible!

Ecumenism and Youth - www.Tylersride.com

The Transfiguration - You've been Transfigured -- and may not have realized it!

Corpus Christi Eucharist - What did two Lutherans find out about the Eucharist and the Mass? What did the Mass look like in the year 155 AD? Deacon Tom tackles these and more in this homily on the Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ.

The Way, The Truth and The Life - Deacon Tom reflects on his ordination day when he became a deacon -- and then looks at the call of Jesus to follow Him who is the Way, the Truth and the Life.

Road to Emmaus & The Eucharist - A Baptist comments on the similarity of worship in her Texas church to when she visits the Catholic Church. But did she understand how the disciples recognized Christ among them? It was in the 'breaking of the bread.' Join for this homily related to the early hours of the Church -- and the early hours of the Eucharist. It was meant to challenge folks about false witness when they visit other faith worship services.

MEETING JESUS - There were many different views of this man they called Jesus... the one that the poor waved palm branches at and called him the Messiah... there was the Jesus who got 'in the face' of many in authority... or the Jesus who gently corrected the woman caught in adultery. Which Jesus are you going to meet this Holy Week?

RAISING LAZARUS - Lazarus, come out! Christ lets us know that he can get by the 'stench' of death.... and the stench of our sins.

LIGHT AND BLINDNESS - Jesus -- I only want to see you.... Help me to see you and to get past my blindness.

WATER - A holy woman who lives on a mountain top outside of Estes Park, Colorado understands well what today's readings tell us about the need for moisture. But were the Jews simply searching for water -- or was it for something deeper, something inside?

BEATITUDES - In Europe, an atheist left his property to the Devil... what results is found in a view of what property... family (and church) can be like if people aren't drawn into Beatitude -- empowered by an indwelling of the Spirit. Join Deacon Tom for this 'just before Lent' Sunday Homily.

A UNITED DREAM - Like Martin Luther King, Deacon Tom says, "I have a dream." It's a vision of a people united in their faith... united before the Blessed Sacrament! Join for this 3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time sermon on Unity.

RESPECT LIFE - Deacon Tom's Sunday Homily is on the Respect For Life March in downtown Tucson, AZ on Saturday January 19th, 2008. He then challenges us with the necessity to listen for and respond to the 'call of Yahweh.'

BAPTISM OF THE LORD - So what do you think? Should the priest or deacon baptize anyone who wants a baptism under any circumstances? Look at this homily for the Feast of the Baptism of Christ.

FEAST OF THE HOLY FAMILY - Would you kneel before the Pope? How about your parish priest? Join for this homily on being family.

ADVENT - Deacon Tom just received his assignment from the Bishop of Tucson. This 2nd Sunday of Advent homily is Tom's introduction and homily at his new Arizona parish.

LET US PRAY - The powerful uses of prayers, and how it touches us all - even across thousands of miles. (Deacon Tom's last homily at his Colorado parish).

POOR MAN LAZARUS - ''THE ANAWIM AND THE NEW AGE: God 'speaks' to Deacon Tom! Alas, He gives Tom a tough message. It's about the rich man and the poor beggar Lazarus. And about New Age thinking. Dear Jesus -- do we really have to challenge people?''

HOPE - ''Did the disciples in the Upper Room have faith? Did they have love? The answer to both questions is 'yes.' So what was missing? Why were they there with doors locked in fear? Join us for this Pentecost and Memorial Day Homily on the gift and the virtue of HOPE.''

BREAKING UP - Breaking up is oh-so-hard to do! This weekend -- I took the opportunity to talk about the importance of unity in the Church... in our faith communities... and being in unity with the Church's leadership. And then I shared about going away and leaving a wonderful mountain parish. Please join me for this 6th Sunday of Easter homily.

PUTTING THE PIECES TOGETHER - The readings for this weekend seem unrelated.... ranging from the Apostles being dismissed from the Sanhedrin to the Book of Revelation and worship of the Lamb on the throne to Peter being 'grilled' by Jesus. Can we tie these together into a theme or lesson? Come join us for this Third Week of Easter homily.

DINNER WITH THE POPE - The Pope has just invited you to dinner. And what if you hadn't been practicing any faith and you received the invitation to dine with the Holy Father? What would you do? Here's a homily with a story in which this really happened.

RESUME TO JESUS - Okay fellow Christian, here's the assignment for today. Sit down and write a resume in application for a position as disciple of Christ. What would you say? Would Jesus see potential in your resume? Join us for this homily!

SLAIN IN THE SPIRIT - An Irish priest that I know says that all stories are true -- and some of them actually happened. Have you ever been 'slain in the Spirit?' Here are some stories relating to Gifts of the Spirit -- Gifts from God.

PENTECOST AND THE HOLY SPIRIT - What kind of a deacon preaches about fear of the night -- and about whistling in the dark? This one does -- and also tells about being chased by a big 700 pound momma elk. Join us for this reflection on Pentecost and the Holy Spirit.

MARRIAGE AND THE EUCHARIST - Many Catholics know of a little publication called Magnificat. I found a sentence in it that gave me pause: "Marriage is Christ's answer to hell." What an unusual... perhaps an odd statement! And as I pondered the readings for the 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time -- I found much to reflect on about Marriage and the Eucharist -- two Sacraments that aren't usually talked about in the same talk. Please join us for this homily.

THE ULTIMATE TRUTH - A Baptist lady friend told me that our Sunday Mass was just like the worship service in her church back home. This got me to thinking about how some folks process things in these days of 'super tolerance' and the waning concept of ultimate truth. Do you believe in ultimate truth? Do you believe that in tolerance, that almost anything is okay? That's what we shared about in this Sunday homily.

HEARING GOD SPEAK TO US - Moses may have heard God's voice speaking from a burning bush -- but not us! Most all of us would love to be in a more certain awareness of God's voice in our lives. Today and for four days following, we'll delve into this subject: Hearing God Speak To Us."

HEARING GOD PT 2 - "..... so I hear this deacon saying to read Scripture and I'll hear the word of God. Well I opened the Bible and what do you think I see? It tells me that Noah was 600 or more years old! I mean -- give me a break... how can I hear God speaking in this kind of story?"

ROSE OF LIMA - "Yesterday, we talked about hearing God's voice in Scripture. But sometimes -- between the shower radio and the Today Show and ordering pizza for supper -- the Good God can't get a word in edgewise. Will you -- can we quiet our hearts and to know that God speaks to us -- but only when we let him. Don't 'drown' Him out! Sometimes -- He speaks to us in our suffering because that is when we are forced to reflect on Him.... his voice."

OH GOD, PRAISE GOD - "Do you remember the movie O GOD? Maybe 20 or more years ago? How wonderful it would be to hear God's voice in our hearts and minds. Here are some thoughts about giving up four little segments of life each day -- perhaps starting with just four minutes.... but with a goal of so much more... A goal of hearing God's voice in your life... for real!"

SPEAK LORD - "Have you ever had a time when you HAVEN'T experienced God in Church or in the Sacraments? Well I have -- and it was just recently. And yet -- in not experiencing God -- I did experience God... Here's the story.... and I ask you to consider that God's voice is waiting to speak to us -- even in those times and places when we thought he had failed us!"

AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL - "What do the towns of Hays, Kansas and Burlington, Colorado - and red barns painted with the American flag have to do with each other? What do horses and Mennonite buggies clip-clopping nearby in Woodbury, Pennsylvania have to do with anything? All of these helped me to thank the Good Lord for the gift of America the Beautiful as expressed in this short homily the day before the Fourth."
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