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Get into the ring! How this works...

This is easy! Each week on Thursday I post my homily main focus for preaching this coming Sunday. What I am hoping for is a reaction from people in the pews. Does my "focus" connect with your daily life, faith, and experience? Or not? Either affirm the direction I am going in (by giving me an example from your life) or challenge me, ask for clarification! Questions are the best! Reaction rather than reflection is what I'm looking for here. Don't be afraid, get in the ring. Ole!

Friday, April 25, 2014

"Forgive or Forget It"

-Last Sunday's homily is available by email
-This Sunday's Scriptures can be found at
-I will be celebrating mass this weekend at 5:30 Sat, 9:30am and 6:00pm Sunday

Sent to Forgive

I am entitling this homily "sent to forgive" because I cannot decide which of these things is more pressing-that we are sent or that we are called to a mission of forgiveness. I am thinking that the mission of God (to be in communion with his beloved human creatures) would vote for:  forgiveness. What I mean is that Jesus' great work was reconciling humanity with God(that involves the forgiveness of sin). Because of our Godlikeness and our Christlikeness we humans cannot be reconciled with God without being reconciled with our brothers and sisters. There is the forgiveness piece.

I am reading a new book entitled "facing forgiveness". Evidently, those who are happy identify forgiveness as the quality most associated with their happiness.  This forgiveness/reconciliation is the crux of the Paschal mystery that we have just celebrated in the Lenten/Easter event.  

Forgiveness is also the most troubling and difficult act/mystery for Christians who are serious about their spiritual life. Forgiveness or mercy is certainly the least attractive or recommended virtue by our secular culture. We do not have good examples from public life of those who forgive or how to forgive or the benefit of forgiving.

Would you like to learn more about forgiving?


anon 1 said...

Matador, I like this combination of messages very much - being sent to forgive. Since first reading your reflection, I've been turning it over and over in my mind. "Loving" is so often the first and ready answer a Christian would give when describing the mission we all share. But as I digest your message, it strikes me that "forgiving" is its steady companion - and an obvious key component of our mission, as well. Jesus shows us this very clearly.

Over these last many weeks, you've been describing the pull on us from society to take on the values of the secular world - and they are values that favor a person to having a sense of power. Winning and success are the name of the game. If one is hurt or injured in any way - the "right" response according to the world is anger. I suppose the power that comes from that emotion is why the world likes it so much.

But as you say, Christlikeness is entirely different - and forgiveness is anger's worst enemy. It is a right partner with loving because the deeper the love, the deeper the potential of hurt. Only a matching (or surpassing)depth of forgiveness is the true power to restore communion - and that is the ultimate goal of the Christian life.

As Jesus tells us in another Gospel text - anyone can love those who don't hurt them. There is nothing special about that. But when in relationship with others, hurt is unavoidable - and forgiveness is the only means that will allow love to continue to grow. Those are the only relationships worth their "salt".

Anonymous said...

forgiving is also a way to build one's trust in God.

Anonymous said...

To be forgiven = knowledge of the experience of love

To forgive = freedom and the opportunity to experience the divinity and holiness of Christ

I believe it's only through God's grace that we can ever forgive anyone's offenses.