Thursday, February 9, 2017





Mar, Jan (holding "Sophie"), Ron, Phyllis and Gary

Gary and Phyllis

Jan, Mark and Phyllis

Jan and "Sophie"

Tuesday, February 7, 2017




June 1997

April 1997

I am honored to be welcomed back on a regular basis, after twenty years, to the very pulpit I designed. Here I am in my favorite pulpit recently - on December 4. 2016

I am so happy to be back on a regular basis after being gone for twenty years.
I will be leading a parish mission March 6 and 7 at 7:00 with my gospel music group
REFLECTIONS. It will be a wonderful time together. Please come and bring your friends - Catholic, non-Catholic or people of no particular church. 

Sunday, February 5, 2017


“Choosing the Weak, Making Them Strong”

Rev. Ronald Knott
                      February 5, 2017               

I came to you in weakness and fear and much trembling, 
and my message and my proclamation were not with
words of wisdom, but with a demonstration of Spirit 
and power, so that your faith might rest not on human 
wisdom but on the power of God. 
I Corinthians 2:1-5

(Since I will be leading a parish mission here soon, using the idea of being light and salt, I decided to go with the second reading of the day today.)

One of the great disappointments of priesthood has to be that Monday after your ordination and first Mass. As much as you would like to think you are a different person, the truth of the matter is that you wake up feeling just like you did the day before you were ordained. You realize quite quickly that you are same person with the same weaknesses and same sins.  

I have never felt “good enough” to be a priest. I often wonder why God picked me. I don’t worry too much about God. I know that God has a long standing practice of choosing the weak and making them strong. I don’t worry too much about God, but I do worry about what people think because they sometimes expect more out of me than God himself. Sometimes I think they expect too much. 1500 years ago, Saint John Chrysostom sympathized with priests like me when he wrote, “The priest’s shortcomings simply cannot be concealed. On the contrary, even the most trivial soon gets known. For as long as the priest’s life is well regulated in every particular point, the intrigues cannot hurt him. But if he should overlook some small detail, as is likely for a human being on his journey across the devious ocean of life, all the rest of his good deeds are of no avail to enable him to escape the words of his accusers. That small offense casts a shadow over the rest of his life. Everyone wants to judge the priest, not as one clothed in flesh, not possessing a human nature, but as an angel, exempt from the frailty of others.” No, God doesn’t scare me as much as people’s expectations of me!  
So many Scripture readings make me feel a whole lot better about myself. In Scripture we read about a whole bunch of “losers” being picked by God for important work.  When Isaiah is called to be a prophet, he tries to beg off by pointing out to God that he is not worthy of such a job because he has a foul mouth, from a family of foul mouths! God is not fazed by his excuses. He simply sends an angel to him carrying a hot coal to purify his lips! Does that hurt or what? When Paul was called, he had actually been killing the followers of Jesus. God knocked him off his high horse, cleaned him up in a bath of grace and said, “Make a u-turn in your thinking, brother! I've got something for you to do!” When Peter was called, he resisted in shock, asking Jesus to get away from him, calling himself a “sinful man.”  Jesus simply told him not to be afraid because he had another kind of fishing for him to do.
The Scriptures are full of stories about losers, thieves and idiots being called by God for his work. The Scriptures are full of passages about God choosing the weak and then making them strong. St. Paul writes, “What proves that God loves us is that Christ died for us while we were still sinners.” (Romans 5:8)  The Letter to the Hebrews says, “They were weak people who were given strength.” (Hebrews: 11:34) Paul continues in the First Letter to the Corinthians. “Those whom the world thinks common and contemptible are the ones that God has chosen.” (I Corinthians 1:28) He continues in today's reading when he writes, "I came to you in weakness and fear and much trembling, and my message and my proclamation were not with persuasive words of wisdom, but with a demonstration of Spirit and power so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom but on the power of God." (Corinthians 2:1-5) St. John writes, "You did not choose me, no, I chose you and I commissioned you.” (John 15:116)
Jeremiah is a perfect example of all this. He was a young man when he was called by God to be a preaching prophet. He tried to beg off because of his disinterest, his young age and his total lack of public speaking ability. But like the over-aged Abraham and the tongue-tied Moses, God would hear none of their excuses. The words of St. John really apply to him. “It is not you who chose me, it is I who chose and commissioned you.”  
Fellow believers! God also has something for you to do in this world that no one else can do for him. You may not have thought if it; you may not yet have an interest in it; you may not even feel that you are worthy or capable of carrying it out, but if God wants you God is going to hound you. You can run, resist, hide, deny or try to wiggle out of it, but if you don’t answer the call, you will go though life with a dull, chronic feeling of having missed something very special. If God has indeed called you to that work, he will equip and strengthen you to carry it out, and if you do carry it out, you will experience a deep down feeling of peace in your life. Failing to act is also a form of “no.” 
Let me end this homily with two of my favorite quotes, the first from George Bernard Shaw and the last from W.H. Murray. “This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; the being a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world (church) will not devote itself to making you happy.”  (PAUSE) “The moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way.” In other words, find out what God wants, really commit to it and God will shower you with more help than you can imagine. 
Forget your unworthiness! Forget your inexperience! Forget your fear! Forget that you are not the sharpest pencil in the box! When God calls, say  ‘Here I am!” Send me!” To be able to hear what God is calling to, you have to, of course, shut up and listen. You have to spend some quality time with God, because when God talks, he whispers!