Ransomed from the prison of our hearts, minds and souls

Fr. Steven Voss - Pastor - Saint Joseph Catholic Church - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521A PBS special on Christianity more than 10 years ago remains fresh in the mind of Fr. Steven Voss, our pastor, because of the woman who could never forget a certain Advent hymn. Unchurched since childhood, the woman did not understand the hymn, but whenever she was in trouble, she remembered the melody and the words to its first verse. “Every time she sang those lyrics or hummed that tune, she was praying to the only entity who could ever bring her peace,” says Fr. Steven. “I believe she was receiving great grace that would come to help her.”

On Gaudete Sunday we celebrate the truth of this grace, and like the Israelites thousands of years ago, we look forward to being ransomed from prison, be it self-imposed or physical, by the birth of Jesus Christ. Fr. Steven reminds us that we can begin to prepare now in earnest for Christmas and urges us to say to the Lord, “Let my gift to you be the fullness of who I am, both talents and gifts, and brokenness and sorrow. And Lord, I accept your gift of healing love and peace with great joy.” A final gentle reminder from Fr. Steven: The Devil would have us believe the gifts and trappings of Christmas are what make us happy, when in fact they are symbols of enduring love and the great gift we receive in Christ himself. Have you guessed the hymn yet? For the answer and to listen to Fr. Steven’s complete December 14, 2014 homily, click on the video above or this link.

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About Karin Livingston

Mrs. Livingston taught at Saint Joseph Catholic School with a State of Colorado teaching license for 15 years before moving into the parish-school technology coordinator position in 2006. Mrs. Livingston was instrumental in piloting the technology aspects of the school literacy program, including introduction of the Accelerated Reader reading practice program, and the Student Teacher Assessment of Reading (STAR) program. Mrs. Livingston has been a parishioner at Saint Joseph Catholic Church since 1993. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications with an emphasis in Science from the University of California at Davis. Mrs. Livingston blogs and is the author of the young-adult equestrian novel, Winning Bet.
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2 Responses to Ransomed from the prison of our hearts, minds and souls

  1. annette demeyer says:

    I enjoyed hearing Fr. Voss’s homily from Gaudete Sunday once again. In fact I wish a lot of his Sunday homilies would appear on the website as I have a hearing loss and miss some things….this would really be true for Father Tom’s homilies as well.

    Thank you for posting this.

    • Karin Livingston says:

      Hi Annette — Thanks for following Fr. Steven! We post homilies to YouTube time permitting. Our goal is to always add more. Thanks for your feedback.

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