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Saint Aloysius and Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church

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Trust In God's Forgiveness

Homily 03 17 2013
5th Sunday of Lent C


View the Readings for this day

A woman comes home one afternoon and tells her husband that the car won't start. She says it is water in the carburetor. Her husband not wanting to be rude said "Dear are you sure? I'm not trying to be mean but you don't know a carburetor from a spark plug." But the wife being ever so persistent said "I'm sure there is water in the carburetor." The husband finally says " Okay dear I'll take a look at it where is at." She said in the lake.


Have you ever had something you wish you could take back? Something you could do over again? I'd bet that wife does.

One day there was a woman who was brought to Jesus by the ruling authorities. This woman was a debtor. The debt that she owed was so high that there was no way that she could ever repay it. But the debt that she owed was not a result of unpaid taxes. But rather it was a result of unforgiven sin.

The authorities wanted her to pay the ultimate price. They wanted to condemn her to death by stoning. But before they carried out their plans, they brought the woman to Jesus to see what He might have to say about the whole thing. What Jesus did on that day changed her life forever. It gave her a brand new start.

Have you ever really messed up? Has there ever been a moment in your life when you needed a mulligan or do-over or second chance?

Unless your name is Jesus and you were born in Bethlehem, of course you have. We all have, that's one of the things we have in common. We've all made our messes and we are looking for a chance to start over.

We're looking for the kind of place described by Louise Fletcher Tarkington in her poem The Land of Beginning Again:

I wish that there were some wonderful place
In the Land of Beginning Again.
Where all our mistakes and all our heartaches
And all of our poor selfish grief
Could be dropped like a shabby old coat at the door
And never put on again.

The truth is that there is a place just like that.

You are in it.

Every time we gather for worship we are reminded that this is the Land of Beginning Again.

This is a place of do-overs and second chances through the forgiveness offered to us by Christ Jesus our Savior.

The passage from the Gospel of John may be the most beautiful and profound example of what that looks like. Dr. Bill McKnight wrote, "No other incident in [Jesus'] life, except his death, so clearly revealed the heart of God."

At the heart of the Gospel in our own lives there must always be this deep awareness that HE loves me, HE wants me, HE thirsts for me. How different are the actions of a person in love!

We see Jesus accepting the woman in the Gospel. She broke the rules, she sinned, she was clearly abandoned by her male lover...and Jesus does not condemn her.

Instead, Jesus looked for her well-being, trying to do what is best for her.

That is a description of love.

Today, far too often, love is confused with good feelings or physical attraction.

True love is about seeking the good of the other person, even if that puts us in a difficult situation or causes us to suffer.

We must be willing to give our lives up for the sake of others.

Do you remember Nathaniel Hawthorne's literary master-piece The Scarlet Letter?

The story takes place in New England, and the main character was Ms. Pryne, who was caught in adultery and had a child out of wedlock.

Her punishment is that she must wear a scarlet "A" on the exterior of her clothing so that her shame will be visible to all. However, her lover was never revealed.

Near the end of the book, her lover reveals himself to the community, he was Rev. Dimmsdale.

The whole time she had been wearing the exterior "A", he had been wearing a secret "A" branded on his chest. She had been forced to bear her shame publicly, but he had borne it secretly.

We all carry our letters publicly or privately. Only Christ can forgive us, saying, "Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more."

You think about that before you judge.

What Jesus says to the woman in the Gospel is what he says to us here today and to all, who would presume to choose between the justice of God and the mercy of God... for others and for themselves.

It is the exact same message he says from the Cross, as we shall soon hear again...

"Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do."

Those are the words God speaks to us. Do we dare hear them for ourselves? And if we do, what then are the words we speak to each other?

So, as we prepare for Easter and the celebration of Christ's Resurrection and final triumph over sin and death, the questions for today are...

  • What is it that is still weighing you down?
  • What is it that is still keeping you in the shadows?
  • What is it that you haven't let go of?

It's time to come out of the shadows and into the Light of Christ, in the Land of Beginning Again.

This is the Land of Beginning Again.

This is a place of do-overs and second chances through the forgiveness offered to us by Christ Jesus our Savior.

Step into the Light.

Step into New Life.


Home Homilies Homily 03 17 2013

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Mass Schedule

Saint Aloysius
Tue - Fri - 8:30am
Sat - 5:00pm
Sun - 10:30am

Holy Days
8:30am & 7:00pm

First Friday
8:30am followed by Adoration until 7:55pm

- After weekday Mass
- Before Sat & Sun Mass
- Mon - 3:00pm

Sat - 3:30pm - 4:30pm
Or by appointment

Our Lady Of Lourdes
Sun - 8:30am

Before Sunday Mass

Find Us

Saint Aloysius
211 West Mason Ave.
Buckley, WA 98321
Phone: 360-829-6515
Fax: 360-829-5190
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Office Hours
Tue - Fri 9am - 12:00pm

Our Lady Of Lourdes
506 Ash Street
Wilkeson, WA 98396
Phone: 360-829-6515
Fax: 360-829-5190
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