Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

Homily Podcast



Homily 206 – 3rd Sunday of Easter

April 22nd, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

Called to Witness

The following homily was given at the St. Lawrence Catholic Campus Center at the University of Kansas

What a contrast we see between Peter and the apostles before Pentecost and then the radical change afterward. They get such courage from the Holy Spirit. They are a great example for how each of us is called to give our testimony about Jesus. Peter boldly proclaims, “We are witnesses.” The Greek word here is martyroi…”martyrs” in English. We shouldn’t expect it to be easy to preach the good news about Jesus. Yet, if we really know what good news it is, then nothing should hold us back. We too are called to be His witnesses.

Homily 205 – Easter Sunday

April 8th, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

You Are The Evidence

“He saw and believed,” is says of St. John in today’s Gospel. What did he see that caused him to believe that Jesus was raised from the dead? What evidence is there for the resurrection? If you go to Jerusalem you can see the same thing that John saw on that first Easter…an empty tomb. Something about the empty tomb touched the faith of St. John that allowed him to believe. Why do we believe? What evidence do we have? Probably many of us can describe an experience when we have in fact encountered Jesus. Our challenge this Easter is to go share the good news. Other people need to know about Jesus. We are called to be witnesses; we are called to be living evidence of the resurrection.

Homily 204 – Good Friday

April 6th, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

Making This Day Good

This day marks the most tragic event in the history of the world. God loved us so much that he came in person to show us his love…and we killed him. Yet, as Jesus hung dying on the cross he prayed, “Father, forgive them. They know not what they do.” If we realize today how much we need God’s mercy and are willing to change our lives to put God first, then we will have something to celebrate tomorrow night. If we are willing to ask for forgiveness then we can even dare to call this darkest of days…good.

Homily 203 – Holy Thursday

April 5th, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

The Night of That Last Supper

This evening we sing an ancient hymn composed by St. Thomas Aquinas for the Mass of Corpus Christi in the 13th century. While most people will probably never read much of the volumes of theology he wrote, almost everyone is familiar with the words of his famous chant, Pange Lingua. We use the last two verses which begin with the wordsTantum Ergo in the liturgy of Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. Tonight this chant serves to accompany the procession at the end of Mass whereby we spiritually follow Jesus as he leaves the upper room and goes to the Garden of Gethsemane. Tonight we sing of his glorious body and receive that same body through the gift of the Eucharist. Tonight we are Jesus’ “chosen band.”

Sing, my tongue, the Savior’s glory,
of His flesh the mystery sing;
of the Blood, all price exceeding,
shed by our immortal King,
destined, for the world’s redemption,
from a noble womb to spring.

Of a pure and spotless Virgin
born for us on earth below,
He, as Man, with man conversing,
stayed, the seeds of truth to sow;
then He closed in solemn order
wondrously His life of woe.

On the night of that Last Supper,
seated with His chosen band,
He the Pascal victim eating,
first fulfills the Law’s command;
then as Food to His Apostles
gives Himself with His own hand.

Word-made-Flesh, the bread of nature
by His word to Flesh He turns;
wine into His Blood He changes;
what though sense no change discerns?
Only be the heart in earnest,
faith her lesson quickly learns.

Down in adoration falling,
This great Sacrament we hail,
Over ancient forms of worship
Newer rites of grace prevail;
Faith will tell us Christ is present,
When our human senses fail.

To the everlasting Father,
And the Son who made us free
And the Spirit, God proceeding
From them Each eternally,
Be salvation, honor, blessing,
Might and endless majesty.

Homily 202 – Palm Sunday

April 1st, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

A Week We Call Holy

How quickly on this Palm Sunday the cries of the crowd change from “Hosanna” to “Crucify Him.” It is a reminder to all of us that our faith can be very weak at times. All seems well in a moment of triumph, but then a moment of weakness finds us abandoning God. We need to strengthen our faith, to “keep watch and pray.” This week has been given to us as just such a time. This week we recall the greatest mysteries at the center of our Christian faith. It is a week to be set apart gaining spiritual strength and love. A week we simply call “holy.”

Homily 201 – 5th Sunday of Lent Year B

March 25th, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

Be Open To Something New

In the first reading today, the prophet Jeremiah foretells that soon God will do something new. He will make a “new covenant” with his people. If we really want to grow in holiness, we have to be open to God working in new ways in our life. This may mean getting out of our comfort zone and trying something new. Ultimately God wants everything from us, our entire life. Yet, he does not ask for it all at once. He gives us little opportunities to say yes to him everyday. If we give God just a little to start with, like a small grain of wheat, God will allow us to bear fruit abundantly.

Homily 200 – 5th Sunday of Lent Year A 3rd Scrutiny

March 25th, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

Allow For The Unexpected

By the end of Jesus’ public ministry, perhaps people had gotten used to the way he worked, even in his miracles. If someone was sick, or lame, or blind, you bring them to Jesus and he will heal them. As miraculous as that sounds, it had become somewhat commonplace with Jesus. Perhaps that is why in today’s Gospel Jesus does something so unexpected. He wants to stretch his disciples and show them that he is victorious not just over sickness and suffering, but over death itself.

Homily 199 – 4th Sunday of Lent Year B

March 18th, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

The Banner of Victory

Perhaps it seems strange that we as Christians would use the cross with such pride, that we carry it as a banner of victory. On the cross Jesus looks like he’s been through war and looks defeated. Yet we know this is not the end of the story. Jesus indeed fought and died for the price of our freedom, but his death brought life to the world. If we follow Jesus, we must take up our cross. When we do, we shouldn’t be so surprised that we will end up looking like him, as though we’ve been through war. May we fight well this earthly battle that we may indeed share in the victory to come.

Homily 198 – 4th Sunday of Lent Year A 2nd Scrutiny

March 18th, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

Chosen for the Light

Our catechumens received a new title at the beginning of Lent. They are now known as the elect. The work elect means to chose and these men and women have been chosen for baptism this Easter. All of us should reflect on how special it is that God has chosen us. The gift given us in baptism is even more radical than if we were blind from birth and all the sudden could see like the man in the Gospel. In our baptism we were called from a life of darkness to walk in the light. May all of us use this Lent to strengthen this most important commitment of our baptism.

Homily 197 – 3rd Sunday of Lent Year A 1st Scrutiny

March 11th, 2012, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink


A human being is full of desires. These were put there by God. Yet they are not ends in themselves. God’s plan is to lead us by our desires to him. In today’s Gospel, Jesus uses the ordinary thirst of a Samaritan woman to lead her to life-giving water in the spiritual life. Where are our desires leading us? Are they perhaps out of control? Lent is a great time to reorder our desires toward God, the only one who can truly fill us.