Home‎ > ‎Youth Ministry‎ > ‎Confirmation‎ > ‎

Gospel Reflection

We encourage you to read and reflect on the Gospel before you attend every Mass. During the confirmation year, the staff take turns sharing their reflections before each Youth Mass (2nd & 4th Sundays). Also check out the "God's Word, Your World" resource (click on the image below).

One suggested process is to:
  1. Read the Gospel
  2. Pick a word or phrase that speaks to you
  3. Read the Gospel again, slowly and prayerfully
  4. Look into your own lived-life experiences...how does this apply to your life and the lives of the people we serve
  5. Write your reflection
You can use another process to create your reflection. You are encouraged to do this with with your parents and/or confirmation sponsor.

20180422 - Forth Sunday of Easter

posted Apr 18, 2018, 4:54 PM by Domain Admin

Gospel of John 10:11-18

Kathryn’s Reflection

There is something to be said about unconditional love. I believe it's the same kind of love that the Good Shepherd has for his sheep...just like that of a mother to her child. This Sunday's Gospel really made me think of myself. I'm a mom. I have some of those same instincts as the Good Shepherd. There is nothing that I wouldn't do for my kids. I would die for them if I had to. I make sure that they know that they are loved and cared for and that they feel safe. Even if my kids would do something to really upset me, I would still love them. It just doesn't stop...that kind of love. It's a kind of love that bigger that me. Sounding cliche; it's beyond measure!! I can think of a great number of disappointments I've been to my parents, yet they still love me.

I know I am LOVED!! Beyond measure, Jesus Christ loves me no matter what! I have fallen and strayed...many times and I know I can come back because HE loves me so much. There was a post that the Christian music group, TobyMac recently put up on Instagram and Facebook. It was simple yet powerful. It said, "I have given Christ countless reasons to not love me. None of them changed His mind." -Paul Washer. The quote made my cry. It touched me in a way that made me realize that His love is infinite. It's bigger than me or you and nothing can get in the way of it.

I think of the ways that my love for others wasn't so deep. I sometimes give up too easily and then it's too late. Why couldn't my love be as encompassing as Jesus'? How do I move forward and try to be more like Him? I guess these are all lessons for me to still learn. I know I'm human and I'm not God. I know to be like Jesus, I need to forgive and be understanding. We need more forgiveness in each other and even more, forgiveness in ourselves. Forgiveness in everything leads us back to Jesus.

20180408 - Second Sunday of Easter

posted Apr 5, 2018, 5:01 PM by Domain Admin

Gospel of John 20:19-31

Vincent’s Reflection

The story of when Jesus resurrected appearing to his disciples after his death. The disciples had been in hiding in an upper room in house for fear of the Jews and what they would do to them after they have just killed their leader, Jesus. How often in our lives do we hide from the things that fear us most? Is it not enough to know that believing in Jesus will bring us salvation? Our faith is tested each and every day, but we as a faith community must unite in love to draw out fear.

“Peace be with you” is what stood out to me from this gospel as it is repeated multiple times. Jesus asks his disciples to put their faith in him and everything will be okay, not to fear. Jesus says, “As my Father has sent me, I send you.” Jesus had breathed on them giving them the Holy Spirit. What Jesus gives the disciples and us is assurance by revealing himself. Jesus shows us that he brings peace; our sins are forgiven, my slavery to sin is broken, Jesus takes our fears and cares, our life is settled for eternity which is peace. By this peace Jesus gives us, disciples, a mission. Jesus is the true servant leader.

Another part of the gospel is doubting Thomas which we cannot neglect. How much of our fears come from not being strong in our faith? Are we a people who go through the motions? Some of us are Thomas in our life right now, unbelieving of Jesus. That is okay, because Jesus assures us in some point in our lives that he is full of love, full of grace, full of compassion. He reveals himself on the 8th day of his first resurrection and Thomas is among the disciples. He asks Thomas to touch his wounds that he sustained on the cross, but it is the mere fact that Jesus tells Thomas to stop unbelieving and to believe. The term “seeing is believing” is what we has humans live on, and Jesus shows us that he is present if we truly believe in him. When we walk by faith and not by sight, peace is with us. God gives us a choice to put our faith in Jesus Christ. Doubt is never the destination for the believer, but a stopping point that we pass through, the destination is to believe and come to faith in Jesus. Jesus says to Thomas, “Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.” And Thomas says to Jesus, “My Lord and my God!” which we as believers need to come to in faith as Thomas did.

It’s never easy, but it is simple to live the Catholic faith. Will you believe in Jesus and put your trust in Him? As you go forth on your faith journey continue to be guided by the Holy Spirit. On that day of confirmation, you will be sealed with the Holy Spirit which gives you authority. If you truly believe in Jesus you have the authority and mission to serve God with love. Accept, believe and commit to Jesus Christ. “Peace be with you”.

God is good all the time,
Vincent Decierdo

20180325 - Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion

posted Mar 18, 2018, 9:48 PM by Domain Admin

Gospel of Mark 14:1—15:47

Kevin's Reflection

“Hosanna! / Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! / Blessed is the kingdom of our father David that is to come! / Hosanna in the highest!” On Palm Sunday, the community will rejoice together and proudly proclaim, “Hosanna!” We will come together and celebrate Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem and His entry into our hearts.

Our community has been stricken with fear over the last few weeks due to the accounts of violence that have accumulated. It has been difficult to celebrate and be hopeful for much of anything lately. But, I pray that on Palm Sunday, we have every reason to celebrate and to be hopeful, because we will be together and supporting one another as we celebrate the presence of Jesus.

As Jesus was entering Jerusalem, everyone was pulling out all the stops to make his entrance as lively and extravagant as possible. Even those who were skeptical and unaware of the value of this moment, were celebrating. The sight of Jesus entering Jerusalem is a very powerful experience to just stand still and witness. People had to actively prepare and show their admiration through “spreading their cloaks, and leafy branches.” When momentous occasions occur, they are powerful in their own right. But when the masses also are feeding into the celebration of the occasion, that adds more encouragement onto others to join in on the celebration. In this case, it is the moment of Jesus entering Jerusalem, and it is the Catholic community living out their faith.

I am aware of the massive turn out that occurs during Palm Sunday. I look around and think to myself, “Wow! There are a lot of people here. This is awesome!” But what also occurs to me is, “Where did all of these people come from? Where were they during all the other Sundays?” But I’ve learned to be grateful of any turn out size of any celebration because Jesus has impacted all of our lives in different ways. And we show our gratitude and our faith in different ways as well. I am not a perfect Catholic, nor do I even know what that entails. But I am living my life through Jesus. And It took me a very long time to understand what it means to live Him. What I understand that to mean at this moment is that I am practicing my faith. But more importantly, I’m living it, every single day, through every single choice I make, and do not make. And I will be very grateful as we all gather as a Catholic community to celebrate Jesus.

20180311 - Fourth Sunday of Lent

posted Mar 5, 2018, 9:37 PM by Domain Admin

Gospel of John 3:14-21

Erin's Reflection

This is probably the most quintessential bible verse that Catholics and even non-Catholics are familiar with and probably the most recited, but I’ll be honest and sometimes hearing this reading just goes in one ear and out the other. When someone begins with, “For God so loved the world…” I immediately think to myself, Yup, John 3:16 again.


And I shouldn’t. As repetitive as this passage can get, it is still a message full of power and LOVE and hope. Some people grew up fearing God, which I did when I was really young, but I learned to grow up loving Him. Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice and died for our sins so that the world might be saved through Him. Our faith teaches us that if we believe in Him we will be saved and have eternal life.

By that same token, our faith teaches us that if we do not believe in God we will not be saved. Scary to think that. I didn’t go to church all the time growing up. It wasn’t until 8th grade when I asked my mom I wanted to learn more about my faith and asked her to sign me up for CCD. Time and time again I always wondered if God was real or not and sometimes I doubted that he existed because of all the negative things happening in my life. God would come and go in my life and I didn’t always believe in Him. However I was pretty sure I wanted to go to Heaven because I certainly did NOT want to go to Hell.

Then I gained a better understanding of where God is present in my daily life and that is through the people that I love. It is through the good works that my family taught me to do. The gospel goes on about how God sheds light to His people so that we may do good in the world, and when people turn to darkness they also turn to evil. In simplest terms, light = good and dark = bad. Turning to darkness doesn’t always mean physical violence or hate, but it could also mean cyberbullying, leaving people out, being selfish and ungrateful, or being in unhealthy relationships. And I’ll admit I am guilty for doing all of the above. But the amazing thing that our faith tells us is that no matter how broken and imperfect we are, no matter how many times we can turn to darkness, Jesus will always be there to shine His light on us so that we can turn to Him. He forgives us time and time again because HE LOVES US. And that alone is truly amazing.

So instead of acting like a robot every time I hear this passage, I remind myself to listen to the gospel intentionally and really hear the message, not just recite it in my head like I passed a “Name This Passage” Quiz. It gives us an understanding as to why we live our faith the way that we do and it’s simple-- God loves us, so we should love and serve others, for others. Just like in the last verse, “But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God.”

20180225 - Second Sunday of Lent

posted Feb 19, 2018, 9:07 PM by Domain Admin   [ updated Feb 22, 2018, 6:59 AM ]

Gospel of Mark 9:2-10

Jerico's Reflection

The gospel talks about how Jesus journeys with a group of his most trusted friends up a mountain and he is transfigured (transformed). When I hear the word transformation and how Jesus was transformed, I think about my own transformation.

The way I grew up, I couldn't have done it alone. I am the person who I am today because of those who I have journeyed with. Just like how Jesus had his friends with him when He was transformed, I was blessed to have people in my life that I call companions on the journey. They have helped me see what life is like and have taught me lessons that no book can ever teach me. I have had people who have held my hand, offered a shoulder for me to cry on, and have given me so much support that I feel that it is my turn to do that same thing.

Transformation happens for me everyday. I'm not trying to say that I change everyday, but I am transformed by what I experience. My life experiences and the people I encounter each day help me see life with a different lens.

As a teacher and coach, I also blessed to see the transformation within my students and athletes. I love seeing young people be inspired and to move in a direction that helps them reach their full potential. Its that look that they give to tel me that they get "it". There is a fire burning within their soul and you can see it in their eyes.

That fire within is the burning love of God! It shows his wanting to be close to each of us and provides us that light to shine in the darkness and to lead a path for others to be inspired.

Transformation is cycle. We each can inspire others and each of those people can inspire other people and it continues going. God light shines and our transformation only helps us grows closer to Him and it moves from person to person.

My question for you is this, who are the people that have helped us transform? and why do you believe God chose for you to transform you in that way that you did.

20180211 - Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

posted Feb 10, 2018, 12:14 PM by Domain Admin   [ updated Feb 10, 2018, 7:23 PM ]

Gospel of Mark 1:40-45

Sheila's Reflection

When you’re healed, you are WHOLE.

When you’re whole, you realize you are HOLY.

When you’re whole and holy, you are fearless and free. Easier said than done? Maybe. Or… maybe not… Either way, we need to work for our relationships to have good ones. Our relationship with God is no exception. It can be hard work, but definitely worth it.

It’s a bit easier to acknowledge affliction or pain when it is outward and physically, like in this story with the Leper. He has a physical ailment. When the ailment is emotional, mental and internal, it can be difficult to understand, identify or detect. It’s easier to push it aside. It’s HARD WORK to acknowledge it. In the gospel this week, the Leper understands that he is unclean. It starts with his DESIRE to be whole and clean. Given his desire, the Leper has motivation, humility and courage to kneel before Jesus. Wow. I can barely have the courage to go to someone in authority to ask for a favor much less someone i know to ask for or give forgiveness. The leper gathers enough courage to bring himself before the Son of God! Epitome of courageousness. Asking for healing is akin to asking for forgiveness. And we have all at one time either needed to ask forgiveness or to forgive.

The gospel gets better: Jesus treats it like ‘it ain’t no thang!’ Jesus completely accepts the Leper. And models for us how to forgive and heal.

This is a beautiful, simple and short story of faith, strength, compassion, humility, love and FORGIVENESS displayed by BOTH the Leper and Jesus Christ. WOW. How awesome is that?

To forgive is to heal. To be healed is to be whole. Returning to wholeness we have the ability realize our holiness. With holiness in our lives, we can be in the full and complete relationship that God has always desired and intended. This is powerful. And it's right there for the taking.

20180128 - Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

posted Jan 22, 2018, 10:16 PM by Domain Admin

Gospel of Mark 1:21-28

Samantha's Reflection

In this Gospel Jesus goes to the synagogue and begins preaching. Since he carried himself a certain way and spoke with authority, he wasn’t like the others who also taught at the synagogue- the people noticed something different about him. Then there was a man with a demon in him and after Jesus commanded for the it to come out, it did. The people were in shock. They asked themselves, “What is this?”

Different aspects of this reading led me to a few reflection questions:

  • The idea of teaching with authority stood out to me and made me think, Do we share our faith boldy with others? Or do we think too much about what others may think?

  • Jesus showed who he was by his words and his actions- it made him stand out. Do we stand out as followers of Jesus through our words and actions?

  • The idea of unclean spirits made me wonder, What is God asking us to remove from our own spirits that are not in line with His own?

Hopefully this Gospel can call us to share our faith with courage, be better Christians through what we say and do for others, and to cleanse our spirits.

20180114 - Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

posted Jan 9, 2018, 8:23 AM by Domain Admin   [ updated Jan 22, 2018, 10:08 PM ]

Gospel of John 1:35-42

Collins' Reflection

In this Sunday’s gospel John shares with two of his disciples who the messiah is referring to Jesus and inviting them to follow him. John and his disciples follow Jesus and question where he is going and Jesus response is most appropriate instead of just telling them where he is staying he invited them to see for themselves. Jesus calls us to serve and be in a relationship with him but never forces us. That is the beauty of having free will. When we are ready to pick up our crosses and follow him he is there with an open invitation. He will call you by name as he did for Simon Peter. Jesus loves us more that we can ever understand.

20171126 - The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe

posted Nov 22, 2017, 2:53 PM by Domain Admin

Gospel of Matthew 25:31-46

Sally's Reflection

I have heard this reading so many times and every time it stops me dead in my tracks. I pray on my daily life choices. Jesus tells us life may seem unfair at times; the consequences of good behavior and bad behavior get mixed up. He tells us not to worry because he will separate the good from the bad. Jesus wants us to be doing good things for others, especially those that live in the “shadows” (the hungry, the imprisoned, the ill, the naked…).

What is the meaning of my life? I have so many needs and desires of my own. But it’s not about me. What matters most is not what I do, but who I am. Does my life reflect my faith and values? Am I someone who loves, who gives, who serves?

It’s about loving our neighbors. Christ teaches us throughout the Gospels by word and example how to serve the spiritual and material needs of our brothers and sisters, through Christ, with Christ, and in Christ.

Jesus Christ is the kind of King who is not interested in power and glory but in serving the needs of others, with Love. We try to strive to live according to his will. Our King is found on society’s ‘shadows,” like the faces of the homeless, and the hungry people at St. Anthony’s Dining Room. In the end, all that will matter is what we have done for Christ and our neighbors. We will not be asked how much money we made, how many awards we won, how many achievements we accomplished. We will be asked one question: “What did you do for me in your neighbor?”

I ask Jesus for the help needed to serve Him through the people around us, especially the least ones among us. For this Christmas season, I choose one or two ways to serve God’s least. I pray for the ones I serve and to serve them in Love.

Whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me. (Mat. 25:40)

20171112 - Thirty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time

posted Nov 7, 2017, 11:35 PM by Domain Admin   [ updated Nov 7, 2017, 11:39 PM ]

Gospel of Matthew 25:1-13

Alfred's Reflection

I missed the opportunity to capture a special photograph at the Youth Rally Mass a few weeks ago. The church was awash in soft, beautiful, twilight shades of red and orange. Towards the end of the distribution of Communion, a married couple served the Host side-by-side. I got lost in my thoughts while they served. I reflected on their lifetime of service to others as Youth Ministers, the wise words that they dispensed, the love they shared freely from their hearts, and all the lives they have touched. I watched as they walked shoulder to shoulder to the altar table, returned the ciboria, bowed in unison in front of the sanctuary, and returned to their seats. There were peaceful smiles on their faces. It was a beautiful, blessed moment.

As they sat down, two realizations sunk in: 1) that the moment was over and gone and 2) that I failed to capture the moment with my camera. I failed even though I was holding my camera in my hands, attached to a monopod for stability, all set up for me to point and shoot! I took hundreds of photos at the Youth Rally throughout the day. I captured images in the church just a few moments earlier during the distribution of the Eucharist but zero images of this blessed couple serving Communion together. As a photographer, you never know when an opportunity to capture a special moment will come. Keeping your equipment ready and paying attention are important or you’ll end up with a missed opportunity like me.

In this week’s Gospel, Jesus tells a story about being ready at all times. In our modern times, it may be hard to understand the importance of having enough oil for lamps. Maybe the story would make more sense if you replaced lamps with cellphones and oil with battery packs. The gospel talks about being prepared, being ready, being vigilant and attentive in order to go to the ultimate feast. Are you ready? Are you paying attention? Are you doing the things you should be doing? What’s at stake is not taking a picture and it’s not missing a wedding feast. What’s at stake is your chance to go to heaven.

1-10 of 14