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Province of St. Albert the Great, USA

Know Before You Go

Know Before You Go is a ministry of the provincial office to help people prepare to hear the readings and preaching of the approaching Sunday's Mass. You can sign up and receive an email each morning with the latest Word of Hope.

  • Pentecost Sunday

    Fr. Brian Walker, OP recalls the great events of Pentecost, when the Spirit united believers from different lands and of different languages so that they could come together and understand each other. Yet in the church today, we see many divisions, Catholics against Protestants against Orthodox, liberals against conservatives. We need to reopen our hearts to the Spirit that can unite.
  • The Ascension of the Lord

    Fr. Scott Steinkerchner, OP unpacks the readings for the celebration of the Ascension of the Lord, explaining why it was necessary for Jesus to leave in his physical form so that he could return in an even better way through the Church, the new body of Christ.
  • The Sixth Sunday of Easter

    Fr. Donald Goergen, OP breaks open the readings for the Sixth Sunday of Easter, which let us know that the reason for our hope is the gift of the Holy Spirit that lives within. Since this Spirit is the Spirit of Truth, let us not despair that we can live the truth, and rededicate ourselves to be people of truth.
  • The Fifth Sunday of Easter

    Fr. James Marchionda, OP breaks open the readings for the Fifth Sunday of Easter, which are both reassuring and challenging. Jesus reassures us that he is going ahead of us to prepare a place for us in heaven, but then he challenges us that we could do even greater works than his own. Will we?
  • The Fourth Sunday of Easter

    Br. Joe Trout, OP breaks open the readings for Good Shepherd Sunday, explaining how God protects us and frees us from sin so that we can join in the salvific work of God and have life more abundantly. Also, we enter into this state through Jesus, who is the gate, though the Sacraments.
  • The Third Sunday of Easter

    Fr. Andrew Carl Wisdom, OP asks us to let the Resurrection of Jesus rewrite our understanding of our own journey, putting all of the struggles in our own lives into a new context of God's ongoing work in the world in letting us become Eucharist for others.
  • The Second Sunday of Easter

    Fr. Brendan Curran, OP reminds us that each of us, at some time in life, has the doubts of Thomas the Apostle. Let us acknowledge these doubts so that we ca confront them and get to a deeper faith, as did Thomas.
  • Easter Sunday

    Fr. Scott Steinkerchner, OP explains how the many readings for the Easter vigil outline the history of God's slow, saving work, which culminates in Jesus. At the same time, however, the Gospel reflects that first moment of people learning about the resurrection, when many struggle to believe and most don't understand. At this moment in time, society seems to be in the same place, where we have heard about the Resurrection, but we still live under the oppression of death and the fear of death.
  • Palm Sunday

    Fr. Brian Walker, OP unpacks the celebration of Palm Sunday, pointing out that we need a whole week, Holy Week, to unpack the meanings contained in the Lord's death, and his welcoming us into his salvific work even now.
  • The Fifth Sunday of Lent

    Fr. Donald Goergen, OP unpacks the readings for the Fifth Sunday of Lent, pulling out several quotes on resurrection, speaking of it as communal, personal, and universal. Though we cannot say precisely what the resurrection will be like, we are challenged to understand that there is more to life than this life we are living now, something beyond our imagining. God does not abandon us at death.
  • The Fourth Sunday of Lent

    Fr. James Marchionda, OP reminds us that there is no darkness in God, even though they called Jesus evil for healing a man born blind on the sabbath. In the same way, the Apostle Paul reminds us that once we are baptized, we are children of light, and the darkness can no longer overshadow us.
  • The Third Sunday of Lent

    Fr. Scott Steinkerchner, OP provides background information about the Gospel Reading for the Third Sunday of Lent, the story of Jesus' encounter with the woman at the well, explaining the relationship between the Samaritans and the Jews and the sorts of encounters that happen between men and women around wells in the Bible.
  • The Second Sunday of Lent

    Br. Joe Trout, OP breaks open the readings for the Second Sunday of Lent, including the Transfiguration, pointing out the many ways God speaks to us and wondering if we will listen and experience the fullness of the Resurrection come Easter.
  • The First Sunday of Lent

    Fr. Andrew Carl Wisdom, OP, breaks open the readings for the First Sunday of Lent about the temptations of Jesus, asks us to consider if God is at the center of our life, or have we fallen victim to the Father of Lies?
  • The Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

    Fr. Brian Walker, OP breaks open the readings for the Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, wrestling with the huge task of trying to "be holy, as God is holy." One way we do this is by opening ourselves to others, recognizing that the holiness that resides in us resides in them as well, since we are all made in the image of God.
  • The Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

    Fr. Brendan Curran, OP breaks open the readings for the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time, including a long Gospel passage on the teachings of Jesus, which could sound like a lot of do's and don'ts, but are really an invitation to live out our faith more fully in a variety of ways.
  • The Fifth Sunday of Ordinary Time

    Fr. Donald Goergen, OP, citing the prophet Isaiah, asks us to look at our life and see if we are truly motivated by core principles of our faith such as caring for the poor and the homeless, and feeding the hungry.
  • The Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

    Fr. Scott Steinkerchner, OP breaks open the readings for the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, offering background information about Gideon and the Battle of Midian, the lands of Zebulun and Naphtali, and on the beginnings of Jesus' ministry.
  • The Second Sunday of Ordinary Time

    Br. Joe Trout, OP breaks open the readings for the Second Sunday of Ordinary Time, challenging us to see more deeply the many layers of meaning in scripture, and how we constantly need to struggle to reinterpret our faith through Christ. As examples of the struggle to understand, he asks how it is that Israel is to be a light to all the nations (from Isaiah); how it is that Christ is light to all the nations (from John), and how it is that John the Baptist, Jesus' cousin, claims that he does not know Jesus (from Mark)?
  • Epiphany

    Fr. Brian Walker, OP celebrates the Epiphany, when Christ was made known to all the nations. Let us extend that peace to all, no matter their origin, color, political party, or any other difference that might divide us.
  • Christmas Day

    For Christmas, Fr. Don Goergen, OP speaks of the three-fold coming of Christ—in Bethlehem, at the end of time, and in our heart every day.