Sunday, June 12, 2016

Looking Ahead

Father Perry D. Leiker, pastor
By Father Perry D. Leiker, pastor

Quote of the Week: “When the power of love overcomes the love of power, there will be true peace.” — Sufi Wisdom.

At first sight, these readings seem to be quite a downer.

In the first reading, David sins to the point of causing the death of Uriah the Hittite, whose wife he essentially steals and eventually marries.

In the Gospel, a woman (known to be a public sinner), makes her way (uninvited) into the home of a well-to-do Pharisee in the middle of a dinner.

Both sinners recognize and confess their sin.

David does so openly and directly to Nathan; the woman does so openly, yet in an intimate expression by cleaning Jesus’ feet with her tears, and anointing and kissing them in public.

Although the scenes and the sins are different, the admittance of sin, guilt and sorrow are very much the same.

What is essential to true repentance is the acceptance of responsibility for the sins one has committed and a desire to change. In our faith, we have a tool that is enormously helpful to this process.

In the sacrament of reconciliation (more commonly known as confession), a person goes before the priest (both sinners) and tells his or her sins.

Accepting responsibility for one’s sins by openly, directly and simply admitting one’s guilt is required. By opening to let the sin out or telling it one finds themselves open even more to receiving forgiveness and actually experiencing a reconciliation deep within.

The woman in today’s Gospel does it publicly — and yet it is so intimate and so revealing. Many were aghast!

Jesus, however, defends her actions and notes how deep was her love.

A great truth is being expressed today which has to do with being imperfect, sinful, yet capable of true repentance.

How human! How encouraging! How filled with the mercy and love of God!

Father Perry D. Leiker is pastor of St. Bernard Church. Reach him at (323) 255-6142, Ext. 112; email Follow Father Perry on Twitter: @MrDeano76.

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