An excerpt from Father’s book, Letters.
February 27th, 2009
Yesterday I saw something that struck me as out of place, or, perhaps, just the normal secular distortion of religion – imagine that! It was a passing note on a news broadcast, I believe, noting that “the somber and dark period of Lent has now begun.” I think they may have been comparing it to the mayhem and general debauchery that often takes place in certain places prior to Lent at Mardi Gras.
My dear friends, Lent is not a “somber and dark period.” I think at times, even among Catholics and other Christians, that notion has drifted about. Lent is the most hope-filled time we have, culminating in the blaze of glory that is Easter. It is the period of preparation for the Lord’s Paschal sacrifice. It is a time for penance and prayer, alms giving, and other works of virtue and charity. Most of all, it is a time to recall God’s infinite love and mercy for us, manifested in the life, mission, death, and Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ.
We recall, at all times, but especially during the holy season of Lent, that “even if our sins be as scarlet, they can be made whiter than snow, washed by the Blood of the Lamb.” Perhaps some of the folks that think Lent is a “somber and dark period,” also think that the sacrament of Penance or Confession is also somehow in the same category. How wrong they are. The great sacrament of Reconciliation is a sense perceptible manifestation of God’s love and mercy that effects (causes to happen) what it signifies. It takes away the guilt of sin. It reconciles the sinner (that’s every one of us) to God. It unburdens the heart, mind, and soul. In short, it is a cause for the greatest joy! Lent is filled with the Light Who is Christ.
I want you to have the hope, the peace, and the joy that comes from knowing without any question that God loves you. Have a blessed and joyous Lent, knowing that God’s mercy and love are there for all of us – and GO TO CONFESSION!
God bless you,
Fr. John Corapi