17 Jun

“In the Gospel [at yesterday’s Mass] we have the theme of ‘forgiveness’. The scene is a meal given by a Pharisee at which Jesus had been invited. A woman comes in, with a bad name in the town, and weeps on His feet, wiping away the tears with her hair, and then anointing and kissing them. Jesus reprimands the Pharisee for his lack of proper greeting and welcome, and he delights in the welcome and attention of this woman. Jesus says to the Pharisee, ‘I tell you that her sins, her many sins must have been forgiven her, or she would not have shown such great love… Then he (Jesus) said to her, ‘Your sins are forgiven.’

An author wrote a true story concerning a preacher. He preached a sermon on ‘forgiveness’ in a church. Later he received a letter from someone who had been in that church and had heard his sermon. The letter came from a woman whose husband has suffered terribly as a result of a vicious crime that had been committed against him. The letter contained the question, ‘How could you expect me to forgive those despicable people who made my husband suffer so much?’ The preacher wrote back, ‘No, dear friend, I don’t expect you to forgive these despicable people who did that to your husband, for I am a frail human being like yourself. But JESUS CHRIST expects it of you and expects it of me. No matter what happens, we must try to love our enemies, Christ so taught us and so lived.’

St Teresa of Avila wrote, ‘The saints rejoiced at injuries and persecutions, because in forgiving them they had something to present to God when they prayed to Him.'”
– From “Spiritual Thought from Fr Chris”


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