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Sunday Soundbites
Sunday Soundbites is a weekly, 90-second radio homily based on the Sunday readings, written and read by Fr. Greg Friedman, O.F.M. Sunday Soundbites is also heard on Catholic radio stations around the country.

Program for Sunday, October 19, 2014
(Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time)


Sunday Soundbites Archive

Hello, I'm Franciscan Father Greg Friedman, with the Sunday Soundbite for the Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time. 

We often say, “Religion and politics don’t mix.” Our nation has a tradition of separation between Church and state. But today’s Sunday Mass readings bring these two realities together.

The first reading comes from the book of the prophet Isaiah, a text written in the sixth century before Christ, some two hundred years after the original Isaiah prophesied. The situation: the people are in exile, under the domination of the king of Persia, Cyrus. He’s a pagan king, but the prophet calls him God’s “anointed.” God will use this pagan king to restore his people to their homeland. In the Gospel, the civil ruler in the spotlight is the Roman emperor. Here the religious-civil issue is raised by the Pharisees. Seeking to trap Jesus, they want his opinion on paying taxes. (It seems like the subject of taxes is a timeless human issue!) At any rate, you know the Lord’s response: Give to Caesar what belongs to him; but give God what belongs to God.

It’s all a matter of priorities. The state is an institution that commands our response to legitimate responsibilities. Christians have an obligation to be good citizens. But God can and will call on us for a response which comes first. Our American bishops have taken pains to instruct us on the duties of citizenship, and the values of faith which must assist us in our response. Today let’s allow our Lord’s timeless priorities to guide us.

I’m Father Greg Friedman with the Sunday Soundbite from St. Anthony Messenger Press, on the web at FranciscanRadio.org.

Meet Father Greg Friedman
Father Greg Friedman, O.F.M. Franciscan Father Greg Friedman is the former creative director of the Media Production Team at Franciscan Media, and former host of American Catholic Radio. During his years at St. Anthony Messenger Press/Franciscan Media, Father Greg wrote and directed Assisi Pilgrimage: Walking in Faith with Francis and Clare, which appeared on ABC-TV stations nationwide, and received a 2008 Telly Award for Excellence. He also produced the popular faith-formation series Catholic Update Video, used in parishes around the U.S. For four years he served as pastor of St. Francis Seraph Parish, located in the inner-city neighborhood of "Over-the-Rhine" in Cincinnati, Ohio. Currently on sabbatical, Father Greg is stationed at the Franciscan Monastery of the Holy Land in Washington, D.C.
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