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People Want to be Forgiven II

Today’s readings (3/27/13), contrast two “people”.  In the reading from Isaiah we hear of the Suffering Servant.  Ultimately this prophecy finds fulfillment in Jesus but we can all fulfill in some way as Christian disciples seeking to God’s Will.  In the gospel reading, we hear how Judas Iscariot goes to the chief priests and ask what they will give him if he hands Jesus over to them.  Judas is the one who betrays Jesus.

Clearly, the Suffering Servant is the model we should follow, not Judas Iscariot.  Are there times when we are like Judas?  Do we betray Jesus?  What does it mean to betray?  The definition used with regards to Judas is to turn one over to the enemy.  Another definition of “betray’ is to fail to follow the person’s teaching.

We don’t hand Jesus over to the enemy but do we fail to follow Jesus?

Of course, ideally the answer should be no but the reality is that we do.  We call it sin.  We need forgiveness for our sins.  We want to be forgiven.  Last week I wrote about our desire to be forgiven in coming to the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  It continues this week.  Last weekend, we have a small group of parishioners on retreat.  Saturday morning I joined them to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation with them for almost two hours.  In the afternoon, I heard regular confessions in the parish which lasted for almost another two hours.  Yesterday was our Diocesan Day of Penance with the opportunity for individual confessions scheduled from 12:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Honoring the Seal of Confession, I cannot and will not say anything about the individual confessions.  Starting the day, I figured a few people would come but that I would have signficant periods without anyone there.  I was wrong.  I entered the confessional at 12:28 p.m. and heard confessions continuously, except for one restroom back, until 9:00 p.m.

It’s not that we are terrible people but neither are we perfect.  It doesn’t take a genius to figure this out.  God was very much aware of this when He sent his Son Jesus to die for us on the Cross.  That’s what we will celebrate on Good Friday.  Come and hear the story and know God’s forgiveness.

To learn more about the Sacrament of Reconciliation check out http://renewaloffaith.org/ls/reconciliation.htm.

Peace,

Fr. Jeff

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