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As We Forgive Those Who Trespass…

November 3, 2014

October 27, 2014: Thirtieth Monday in Ordinary Time. 

Ephesians 4:32 – 5:8.  Walk in love, just as Jesus.

Luke 13:10-17. This daughter of Abraham, ought she not to have been set free on the Sabbath day?


Gospel Reflection:

Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. Some of you here today may remember forgive us our debts.  But forgiveness isn’t just a remission of a debt, but a generous and loving expression to others of the same forgiving love Christ has shown to us.  We are all called to the imitation of Christ.

When he wrote the Church in Ephesus, St. Paul wasn’t just setting down how they should act, or talk or think in Jesus, but the bigger picture: he is telling us all, for all time, not to think only as the local Church, but for the Church’s mission on the world. We are to walk in love, just as Christ.

But how hard it is! I have been coming up her for about three and a half years, sharing with you some of the humble education I have received to this point, as well as my ideas on how the Scriptures teach to us even to this day, two-thousand years after the risen Christ.  It has been a great blessing in my life to share my inner most personal thoughts with you on what Jesus is asking of us.  Seventy reflections.  And almost to a one, they all pretty much summarize with this: We are called, each of us, individually and in strength of community, to shrug off the sin that weighs us down, and draw closer to God, in order to be successful in sharing this message of salvation.

And what is sin?  That which keeps us separated from God.  I spoke to a lady this weekend who – in despair – said she was just tired of being told she would go to hell for not attending Mass.    I argued and said that it wasn’t missing Mass, but that you were drawing further away from God.  To separate yourself from God.  And Hell, is the eternal separation from God.  But when you go to Mass, you are in His presence, you hear his word, receive his Body, and celebrate unity with his Church.  You can’t help but draw closer to God.

This is what Jesus is telling us in Luke. The woman had been crippled for eighteen years by a spirit.  She was bent over by what?  It could’ve been a spirit of greed, or lust, or gluttony, or any number of things.  Perhaps she really has alcohol as her god, or drugs, or gossip.  We don’t know – but we all know someone like that.

When we draw closer to God in these things, when we stand up straight, we find answers. For ourselves.  For our Church.  For our neighbor.  When we can mimic Jesus and His forgiving love, that is when the miracles occur.  That is when we share saving grace.  That is when we all become one in His Church.

Please pray for Viola, that she draw nearer to God. And continue to pray for me!  Amen.


To Jesus through Mary,




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