We find ourselves now well into that lengthy liturgical period termed Ordinary Time. For some of us, there is a tendency to take this season at its name, to treat these weeks as a ho-hum, colorless gap bridging the feasts of Corpus Christi and Christ the King. Give us Lent and Advent, when we can focus on the tough stuff!
If we could have traveled to a poor sharecropping farm in central Italy early in the 20th century, we would have seen a humble building – formerly a cheese factory – sheltering two families of tenant farmers.
“I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”
Lack of forgiveness blocks the grace of God in our lives. It brings death–spiritually, emotionally, and often, physically. Examine your life. Where do you need to forgive? Pray for the grace to do so.
We’ve all done it from time to time – had a spat with someone and refused to let go – but when these “spats” go on for years, and are based in much more than a simple misunderstanding, how do we let go and bring our families back together again?
I clearly remember walking up the pathway to the rectory door that night to make my first confession in 15 years. The mere thought of having to sit face-to-face with someone and tell him what I had done made me want to turn around and run for my life. Just as I rang the doorbell, I looked back at the car and thought, “Go! It’s your last chance!” but it was too late. The door opened and there was Father Alex.
It was a scene she would never forget – the sight of her spiritual mother lying in a pool of blood on the basement floor – and then seeing the killer come at her with the same knife, stabbing her over and over until she managed to escape. For years she lived with the physical, mental and emotional wounds of that tragic day until one act of forgiveness finally set her free.