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June 23, 2024 – 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Our Great Journey


This week our theme is “even wind and sea obey” based on Mark 4:35-41 /Marcos 4:35-41

Faith is born of an encounter with the living God who calls us and reveals his love, a love which precedes us and upon which we can lean for security and for building our lives.

All pray the Sign of the Cross

Lord of all creation, you command all elements of nature to abide by your holy plan. Protect your people as we seek refuge; grant us your peace in what can be a hectic and confusing world. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.

Using the Bible, invite a family member to read the Gospel aloud.

Things to talk about:

  • Share a time when you were in a big storm. Were you scared? Did you pray to God for help?
  • What do you think it would have been like to watch the wind and sea obey Jesus’ command to be still?
  • Why do you think Jesus asked his disciples, “Why are you terrified? Do you not yet have faith?”
  • Have you experienced the sense of powerlessness the disciples felt? What types of situations might cause young people to feel fear or to feel like they don’t have control of a situation?
  • God worked miracles in the lives of his followers while he walked this earth, he still works miracles today. Share a time when you saw God’s hand at work in your life.

Things to do:


If you don’t have a storm like we hear about in today’s Gospel, create your own garden in a dedicated space in your backyard or in pots. Plant your seeds in rich soil and water them as needed. Be sure they get the right amount of sunlight. Over time, you can watch your seeds grow and reflect on how we too are Planted by God to produce great abundance!


Write out the verse from Isaiah 41:10 on your child’s bathroom mirror using dry erase markers. Or write it in a spot that will be a daily reminder for your family to trust God in times of fear: “Do not fear: I am with you; do not be anxious: I am your God. I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my victorious right hand” – Isaiah 41:10.

Closing Prayer

Prayer of St. Teresa of Avila: Pray this prayer before bedtime to let the peace of Christ envelop your family.

Let nothing disturb you, let nothing frighten you, All things are passing away: God never changes. Patience obtains all things, Whoever has God lacks nothing; God alone suffices.

Name those who need our prayers. Close with the Sign of the Cross.

Catholic Insights

Today’s Gospel reading tells the story of Jesus calming the storm. This can be a powerful image that many people connect with because we have all likely experienced rough times in our lives. Those situations can make us feel powerless because we have no control over them.

To see Jesus possessing the power to calm a storm reminds us to have faith in him. We also recognize the reality that our fear can control us and prevent us from being good and faithful members of the Body of Christ.

Although the reading itself may not be very long, discussions that this story prompt can often take a while and be quite worthwhile because of the universality of these types of experiences.

It is important to reinforce that while we can all relate the Gospel to the storms in our lives, we also have to ask what it means for our faith.

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One response to “June 23, 2024 – 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time”

  1. Fr. Raphel began his Homily Saturday night after Mark’s Gospel telling the story of Jesus in the boat with the disciples during the storm while Jesus slept in the stern of the boat, with a question to all of us: “Why are you afraid?” The next morning, I attended a service at a Methodist church with my daughter. The minister opened up his reflection with, “Why are you afraid?” Totally based upon Mark’s Gospel …Are you kidding me right now? Same weekend…Same reading from the Gospel of Mark! But different Denominations are hearing the same Spirit! This is amazing!

    It was the early summer of 2011. I had just graduated with a BS in Sociology. 2 of 4 my daughters also graduated; My second eldest with her master’s in education, the youngest from High School. We were all so enjoying such a time of celebration. But it was soon to be hit by a horrible storm…Soon afterwards, my eldest daughter at 29 years old had an acute attack of ulcerative colitis. In 3 places her large colon perforated. She tried to explain to me on the phone at 6am from the hospital that she would have to go into surgery to have her large colon removed. She went septic. All her major organs went close to organ failure. I testify with everything in me as I write this, that my time with Jesus prepared me to only cry out these words, “God, I need you NOW-Right NOW…this is way over my head!” From that moment on in July of 2011 all through to March of 2012, each day was a walk of pure faith-that Jesus was in this storm-For me, He became ‘Lord of the Storm!’ She underwent 3 surgeries-Several times we came close to losing her! I thought when my marriage of 23 years when it ended in 2005, 6 years earlier, was a storm and it was-my first real one; that it came with hurricane force winds that left my family dealing with relationship wreckages of varying degrees and our finances in bankruptcy took such a toll on me as a woman who loved Jesus but in many ways did not know Jesus as ‘Lord in the Storm’…Could he be “God in the middle of this, my storm’ for me? Could he keep me together for my children? Could he preserve me and carry me through each and every on-going rippled crisis where my emotions, my abilities and resourcefulness could not save me.
    As I was aware that I was plugged into a relationship with Jesus, and that Jesus was my compass, the captain, the force on my ship that was barely being held together, my heart still felt all the tremors, all the worries, fears, doubts, all the breakings and anxieties-But when I prayed and cried out to Him, the Peace and Quiet would come! Everything that I had learned from my bible studies, from teaching Catechism, embracing the sacramental life and having fellowship with believers, all came together to equip me to ride these storms-and not always textbook perfectly. I did not have to be perfect…I just had to learn how to ‘enter his rest’. Like a riptide, I had to learn how not to fight, but to abide! Even when my belief was being attacked by fear-the fear of getting that 3am phone call from the hospital reluctantly informing me that ‘they had done all they could…and were terribly sorry…’ I had to combat that fear with relying upon God to help my unbelief!’ as my tears drenched the carpet that I was clenching with my fingers and saying, “No! She’s going to come through this!” At this time my daughter’s father had passed away in 2010 due to Cancer and as a parent, I was fighting these fears it seemed on my own. But as I entered ‘His Rest’, I didn’t have to fight the fears as much…Trust CAME…Abiding CAME & I could feel myself entering into the eye of the storm and then rising above it…The truth was I had prayer warriors coming alongside me who were outside of the storm supporting me and my family! Family members, church members from different denominations…!

    So, this Saturday night after Mass, I spent the night with my grandchildren babysitting them. Together we watched True Spirit, the true story of Jessica Watson [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jessica_Watson] A 16-year-old Australian teenager who solo circumnavigates the oceans and endures horrific storms and survives! My faith in my personal relationship with Jesus Christ was the anchor I held onto during such personal storms. Such storms that bring all of our professional and personal abilities to a place of utter fear and terror of death are such that will expose our utter dependence upon God to survive! No drug, no drink, no level of professionalism or personal ability will save our souls from damnation! God gives us storms to test and expose our need for Him! He has ETERNATY in mind when it comes to each of us. He doesn’t care how much we know-it’s if we know Him and He knows us! “Many will say, “Lord, Lord…” When we get a storm, and it appears as if God is sleeping-I say it is because He wants to hear each of us call out to Him. The disciples in the boat that day were tested. Some of them were expert fishermen who had been on the Sea of Galilee all throughout their lives-yet they were reduced to calling out in fear of their lives to Jesus! How many financial experts, legal experts, medical experts, subject experts and others recently have been called to the carpet due to storms that have hit their areas of ‘confidence/ pride / self-resourcefulness: financial failures? legal mishandlings? Medical malpractices? Falsehoods in expert opinions? Are they crying out to God? or are they running to some other savior? It isn’t a coincidence that Pastors and Ministers who are seeking from the Lord a message to give their flocks are coming up with the same message: “Why are you afraid? Ye of little faith?” When the storms hit me I didn’t run to drugs, alcohol, or to an affair…I ran to Jesus. Jesus saved me early on in the 1990’s when I accepted him as my Lord, Savior and King…I gave my life to him. I began going to bible studies. The Holy Spirit was drawing me to fellowship with others who wanted to be with Jesus and talk about him. I am not boasting in myself but only witnessing that without Jesus, I would not have survived these horrific storms and thrived beyond. Miracles occurred. Doors of opportunity opened at timely moments that could only point to the commanding presence of God, his faithfulness, sovereignty, mercy, absolute grace and love for me…when all was coming against me, He was for me. When I was being rejected, He wrapped his mighty arms around me. God’s love is beyond what we could ever hope for or imagine. And sometimes it takes a storm or two in our lives to experience the awesome power of God’s love for us!
    Today my daughter is 42. She is thriving! She just bought her 1st home this past fall and has redesigned the inside with fresh paint & some new molding which has increased the value from 299k to 375k! She is a beautiful trophy for God’s faithfulness as she loves Jesus and reads her bible every day. As Psalm 46 speaks the word of God to us, “Be Still and Know that I am God.”

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