Dear Brothers and Sisters,
This weekend, as we celebrate Laetare Sunday (not to be confused with Gaudete during Advent), marks the middle of Lent. The color rose, which is allowed to replace the traditional purple, reminds us that Lent is not only about sadness and mortification, but rather, it points to Easter, the dawn of salvation. Thus, the color rose representing the Sun of the resurrection.
The Gospel this weekend is a well-known story of the prodigal son. However, each time that I hear that story, it always strikes me in a different way, especially after reading a great book by Henry Nouwen with the same title. The other day, while speaking at the confirmation class, God helped me to appreciate the point in which the son realizes what he has done and decides to ask his father for forgiveness. That’s also known as Examination of Conscience. He stops to reflect what he had done, and how he was suffering without need. At that point, he converts, that is, turns back, and returns to the house of the father, who was waiting each day looking out for his son. I invite you all to have this same experience in confession. Maybe we are not fully aware of our actions yet, but looking at a thorough examination of conscience, we might realize that there some mortal sins we have committed whether unaware they were mortal, or even things we might have forgotten. As we have the schedule for Holy Week here below, lets prepare ourselves for the most wonderful time of the year. Here in the parish Fr. Kevin and I are always happy to hear confessions for as long as necessary, so let’s take the opportunity that God gives us and return to the house of the Father.
Father Steven Clemence