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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, August 24, 2014
(Twenty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time)


Sunday Soundbites Archive

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

In 1995, former Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara re-ignited debates over the Vietnam War with his book, In Retrospect. In the book, McNamara revisited his role in the American involvement in Vietnam, and concluded that he and other leaders failed to come to grips with the reality of the situation, both at home and in Vietnam. Whether one agrees with McNamara or not, his book is a fascinating study of political leadership.

Today's Gospel deals with leadership in the Church. Jesus calls Peter “the rock,” on which Christ will build his Church, and he promises Peter the “keys to the kingdom of heaven.”

This Sunday, I suspect many Catholics will think of the papal transition which took place after the death of John Paul II. That event focused the world’s attention on the papacy, and connects directly with this Gospel story.

Matthew’s account reminds us that the Church, while established in the here-and-now, points to a further reality. Our faith is incarnational--it is rooted in both the human and the divine. Unfortunately, we often concentrate on the human aspects: The temporal business of the Church sometimes preoccupies all of us, including our leaders. The challenge of God's word today is to keep a "heavenly" perspective in our understanding of leadership and service—for all who have that role in the Church.

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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