Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Forty days from now we will find ourselves at the foot of the Cross. Each day of Lent should bring us closer to the summit of our salvation.
So how do we prepare ourselves for this? Our Lord’s words at the very beginning of His ministry set the direction for our journey to Calvary: “Repent, and believe in the Gospel”. These words are not unfamiliar to us for indeed we may have heard them on Ash Wednesday when we were sprinkled with the burned remains of last year’s palms. We began our days of penitence not in gloom and doom, but with a renewed vitality to live the Faith handed down to us.
We recognize that we are sinners and that sin carries with it a burden that the Lord does not wish to be a ball and chain around our souls. He came to set us free, and continues to set us free, as many times as we need, through the joyful Sacrament of Reconciliation. Next week God’s little lambs, our children preparing for their First Confession, are filled with that simple trusting joy as they prepare to meet the Lord of mercy. These little ones are our teachers. They remind us how to approach the Lord in trust and confidence NOT in hearing and trembling.
So many souls these days are looking for assurance and certainty in a very uncertain world. These can be found in precisely what Our Lord has left us: His mercy without end in the Sacrament of Forgiveness. Confession is a wondrous gift and the peace that comes from making a good confession cannot be met by anything in the world other than receiving Our Savior in the Holy Eucharist. For anyone who has forgotten the abundance of heavenly grace that fills our souls as a result of Confession, I invite you to come and see the Mercy God has waiting for you. How can we possibly turn down such a gift?
With blessings for a fruitful Lent,