Thursday, December 04, 2008

Advent and Penance

So I have been thinking.

(waiting for the comments about seeing smoke coming from my ears, and how you hope I don't strain anything. I can take it)

It is the season of Advent. The beginning of our new Church year. A time of great anticipation and preparation for the Season of Christmas (yes, you read that right, Christmas is a season, not just a day.)

The Mass readings leading up to Advent are a bit on the dark and twisty side, filled with doom and gloom. All about what will happen if we aren't prepared when Christ returns.

Then Advent comes and the readings, well they don't really change much. Repent, make straight the path, be changed, prepare the way of the Lord!

Part of that being prepared, is taking a really critically hard look at yourself so that you can smooth out the rough spots and make any course corrections you need to make to "make straight your path". When we do take a critical look at how we have been living, often we find it necessary to avail ourselves of the sacrament of Reconciliation to aide us in getting that path straight. Because while on our own we can't do much correcting, with the help of God's forgiving mercy we have the ability to do the work that is necessary to change.

That is why it is usual for Catholic parishes to have a communal Penance service during the Advent season. To remind us that while we have to do the work to change it might be a good idea to admit that without God's mercy and care we are helpless.

I hope you all find the time to avail yourself of the Sacrament this season.


1 comment:

Jackie Parkes said...

Great blog!