Appleton, WI

Jan 10 Homily Connect: We are more than achievements or weaknesses

Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

IS 42: 1-4, 6-7 ACTS 10:34-38, MK 1:7-11


It happened in those days that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized in the Jordan by John.  On coming up out the water he saw the heavens being torn open and the Spirit, like a dove, descending upon him.  And a voice came from the heavens, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”

Well Loved Story – Finding the Eagle Within

Jesus’ Moment-Sealing the Deal

  • Jesus emerges from the Jordan glimmering with the Holy Spirit
  • Hears the loving voice of His Father: My Beloved Son, I am pleased!
  • He understood more deeply who He was
  • Now equipped by the power of the Holy Spirit for His mission

A Mural of Jesus’ Baptism

  • Found directly above the entrance at St. Thomas More Parish, Appleton

Remembering Our Baptism on the Feast of Jesus’ Baptism

  • Just as important as our birthday’s
  • Fr. Bill was baptized on January 2, 1955 at St. Margaret Mary’s in Neenah
  • Do you know what day, year and where you were baptized
  • Find out and write on your calendar

Exactly Who Are We?

  • We are more than our savings accounts, achievements or weaknesses
  • We are God’s beloved daughters and sons
  • We are the brothers and sisters of Jesus
  • The Lord says to us, “I am pleased with you. I love you.”
  • “There is nothing you can do that will stop me from loving you.”

Our Identity

  • Who we are flows from the Lord’s magnificent and marvelous love for us
  • Sometimes we struggle or haven’t felt God’s love for us
  • Sometimes we are trapped by our past guilt or shame
  • These thoughts diminish our dignity

We are filled with the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit

  • We are given gifts of wisdom and understanding, knowledge and fortitude, right reason and reverence and awe in the Lord’s presence
  • We are given the fruits of love, joy, peace and kindness, gentleness, goodness and generosity, faithfulness and self-control

We Prepare for Our Mission in Jesus

  • We share in the sacred responsibility in making Jesus’ love known wherever we are
  • It is love not hate, kindness not spiritedness, truth not lies, light not darkness
  • We will change our world by living for others, not ourselves
  • We continue Jesus’ mission so the Holy Spirit can renew the face of the earth

Questions for Reflection

  • What impacted you from today’s Readings and/or homily?
  • What is the most difficult thing about understanding yourself as beloved?
  • Do you consider the gifts of the Holy Spirit in your life’s journey?
  • How do you use them to continue Jesus’ mission on earth?

Live Connected

  • Reflect upon how you might live the power of Holy Baptism’s gift of the Spirit this week.