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Father Kirby’s Korner

Today, we hear part of the first chapter of John.  It is a dialogue between John the Baptist and the Jewish priests and Levites from Jerusalem.  They are concerned with the things he has been proclaiming, the way he has been acting and his baptism.  Baptism would not have been surprising to Jewish people of the time, it was mostly connected to a form of humility before God and a form of asking for forgiveness for sins (not necessarily as complete as reconciliation as Christians/Catholics understand today).

The dialogue is almost humorous if taken out of context, but perhaps the reason John felt inclined to include it in his gospel was because it can be seen as a literary device to explain who John is and isn’t.  At the same time, it is a way of explaining who Jesus is and is not.

Last week, I talked about John’s ability to point to Christ, which challenges us to look and point to Christ’s presence in our life as well.  In today’s Gospel John continues to point and explain who Christ is to his adversaries, while at the same time, explaining who he is not.  In a sense John Points to Jesus and away from himself.  This is humility displayed at its finest.  Another lesson from John, we must stop pointing to ourselves, but rather point to Jesus instead.

Below is information about Dowling’s Terra Livre Mission, which I intend to be a part of in March.

Dowling Catholic Terra Livre Club:

2018 is Dowling’s 13th year supporting the Terra Livre organization, which is a non-profit organization that offers educational and support services to underprivileged and at risk children. Over spring break, 30 Dowling students will be traveling to Brazil to help support Terra Livre. Join us for a fun night of Trivia sponsored by the Dowling Catholic Terra Livre Club on January 26th, at Holy Trinity Church.  Doors will be open at 6:00 pm. Food, beverages and on site baby sitting available. Cost is $25 per couple or $100 for a table of 8. 100% of the proceeds from Trivia Night will go to the children of Goiania, Brazil and will not cover student trip or travel expenses. To register contact Erik Smith at


James Kirby