Monday, March 9, 2015

Go to Confession this Lent: Parish Bulletin--3-8-15

            Jim Gaffigan (comedian) declared that the pig is the greatest recycling program in the world.  Why, you may ask?  He argues that if you feed a pig an apple it makes bacon.  If you feed a pig slop, it makes bacon.  If you feed a pig garbage, it still makes bacon!
            Personally, I thoroughly enjoy bacon.  I am so grateful that Jesus declared “swine flesh” clean and that we can enjoy bacon and eggs, BLTs, bacon on donuts (yes, many bakeries now offer maple long-johns with bacon on top!) or even bacon on water chestnuts. 
            This being said, there is an even better recycling program in the world.  It’s called Confession.  A three to five minute conversation with a priest and all your sins will be forgiven!  Now I understand the nerves, awkwardness or fear in confessing sins to a priest.  I get it.  I go to Confession myself (ideally weekly) and I make my confession to some of my best friends—and that’s not always easy!
            Yet think about the trade off.  A few moments of awkwardness, embarrassment or fear and you will receive a clean slate, no matter how long it has been since your last Confession.  If you come to Confession after a week, year, several years, several decades or on your deathbed—your sins will be forgiven. 
Be not afraid of the confessional.  As a priest, I am there to show Christ’s mercy.  I am not there to yell, laugh, point fingers or condemn.  I have heard it all and promise you will not shock, surprise or scandalize me.  After all, sin is boring and we sin in the same ways based on our gender and state of life! 
I recommend that everyone older than ten come to Confession every month.  Think to yourself—have I been to Confession this month?  If not, why?  Why not receive forgiveness for all your sins?  Could Jesus make it any easier for us to know of his forgiveness?
There is no better time to come to Confession than during Lent and I want to highlight our regular and added times of Confession for your convenience:
·      Saturdays at 4:00pm (St. Thomas Aquinas)
·      Sundays at 8:00am (St. Columban)
·      Sundays at 10:00am (St. Thomas Aquinas)
·      Friday, March 27th at 8:00pm (St. Thomas Aquinas)
o   This will be our Lenten penance service and we will have five or six priests joining us as part of our 40 Hour Devotion
·      Thursday, April 2nd following Holy Thursday service (starting around 8:00pm)
·      Friday, April 3rd following Good Friday service
o   St. Thomas Aquinas—starting around 4:00pm
o   St. Columban—starting around 8:00pm
·      You are always welcome to schedule an appointment for other times.
Please come to Confession this Lent!
God Bless!

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