Thought of the day
Friday, January 13, 2017

Friday of the First week in Ordinary Time

Commentary of the day Catechism of the Catholic Church §§ 976-982

Friday of the First week in Ordinary Time

Commentary of the day Catechism of the Catholic Church §§ 976-982

               "Child, your sins are forgiven."

“I believe in the forgiveness of sins” : the Apostle's Creed associates faith in the forgiveness of sins not only with faith in the Holy Spirit, but also with faith in the Church and in the communion of saints. It was when he gave the Holy Spirit to his apostles that the risen Christ conferred on them his own divine power to forgive sins: "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained” (Jn 20,22-23). 

“One baptism for the remission of sins” : our Lord tied the forgiveness of sins to faith and Baptism: "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation. He who believes and is baptized will be saved" (Mk 16,15-16). Baptism is the first and chief sacrament of forgiveness of sins because it unites us with Christ, who “died for our sins and rose for our justification”, so that "we too might walk in newness of life” (Rom 4,25; 6,4). When we made our first profession of faith while receiving the holy Baptism that cleansed us, the forgiveness we received then was so full and complete that there remained in us absolutely nothing left to efface, neither original sin nor offenses committed by our own will, nor was there left any penalty to suffer in order to expiate them.... Yet the grace of Baptism delivers no one from all the weakness of nature.  On the contrary, we must still combat the movements of concupiscence that never cease leading us into evil. 

In this battle against our inclination towards evil, who could be brave and watchful enough to escape every wound of sin?... The Church must be able to forgive all penitents their offenses, even if they should sin until the last moment of their lives. It is through the sacrament of Penance that the baptized can be reconciled with God and with the Church... 

There is no offense, however serious, that the Church cannot forgive. "There is no one, however wicked and guilty, who may not confidently hope for forgiveness, provided his repentance is honest.” Christ who died for all men desires that in his Church the gates of forgiveness should always be open to anyone who turns away from sin.