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All Issues > Volume 25, Issue 2

<< Tuesday, March 10, 2009 >>
Isaiah 1:10, 16-20
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Psalm 50 Matthew 23:1-12
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"Though your sins be like scarlet, they may become white as snow; though they be crimson red, they may become white as wool." —Isaiah 1:18

No matter how scarlet our sins are, we can "reason together" with the Lord (Is 1:18, RSV-CE), "set things right" (Is 1:18), and wash ourselves clean by repenting of our sins (Is 1:16). We repent by:

  1. hearing "the word of the Lord" (Is 1:10),
  2. putting away misdeeds from before God's eyes (Is 1:16),
  3. ceasing to do evil (Is 1:16),
  4. learning to do good (Is 1:17),
  5. making justice our aim by redressing the wronged (Is 1:17),
  6. hearing the orphan's plea and defending the widow (Is 1:17).

In effect, we repent by obeying the Lord (Is 1:19). Obedience has to do with our ears and His eyes, with stopping evil and starting good, and especially with doing justice. Repentance is not just a decision. It is actually several decisions leading to a new lifestyle. Repentance so changes ourselves and our world that God's kingdom comes on earth as it is in heaven (see Mt 6:10).

Therefore, the Sacrament of Reconciliation is reason to celebrate. We can understand why the angels and saints in heaven rejoice over one sinner who repents (Lk 15:7, 10). Through repentance, your Lent can change the world.

Prayer: Father, may my next Confession result in hundreds of people ceasing to do evil, learning to do good, and caring for the basic needs of thousands.
Promise: "Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled, but whoever humbles himself shall be exalted." —Mt 23:12
Praise: Marcia has the honor of seeing the joy and freedom on the faces of teenagers after receiving the Sacrament of Reconciliation while on retreat.
Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") for One Bread, One Body covering the period from February 1, 2009 through March 31, 2009.
†Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 11, 2008.
The Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil Obstat agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.
Volume 25, Issue 2
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