Tuesday 21st March – Tuesday of the 3rd week of Lent

Reflection: Matthew 18: 21-35


Each time I read through today’s gospel reading I see so clearly, the wickedness of the unforgiving servant. I see a person who could not even simply share the joy, excitement and freedom of being pardoned such a huge debt with a fellow servant by extending the same hand of forgiveness. I often say to myself: “…I can never be so wicked!” But is that completely true? Haven’t there been times when I have acted just the same way? Though I may not have anyone locked up in prison, are there not many people who are locked up in the prison of my heart because they have hurt me in one way or another?

Beloved, it is easy to claim to have forgiven a person who hurt you. The true test of your forgiveness is not what you say, rather it is your attitude to that person each time his name is mentioned in a conversation, or each time you have an opportunity to offer help to him/her. Christ asks us not simply to forgive with our “lips” but from our hearts. If you find yourself retelling the story of how unjust or untrustworthy a person is each time his/her name is mentioned, if you unconsciously keep talking ill of a person, then that is an indication to look into your heart. You may still have the person locked up in the prison of your heart.

Lent is a time to seek reconciliation with God and with our brethren. Lent is a time to examine our hearts and ensure that we are truly keeping in step with our master, Jesus. Examine your unconscious attitudes to those who have offended you in the past and ask the Lord for the grace to truly forgive them from your heart.

Prayer: Thank you Lord for forgiving me each time I come to you. Please pour out your grace into my heart that I may truly extend your perfect forgiveness to those who have hurt me. Amen.

Faith pearls: “For judgement is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy; yet mercy triumphs over judgement.” James 2:13 RSV-CE

Hide a treasure: YOUCAT 524 – What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”?

Merciful forgiveness—the mercy that we show to others and the mercy that we ourselves seek—is indivisible. If we ourselves are not merciful and do not forgive one another, God’s mercy will not reach our hearts.

Today’s readings: Dan 3:25, 34-43; Ps 25:4-9; Mt 18:21-35



Friday 10th March – Friday of the 1st week of Lent

Reflection: Psalm 130: 1-8


This was the theme for the celebration of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy in the Church all over the world in 2015/2016. As the church called each one of us to embrace God’s mercy and reconcile with Him, it equally called us to be like our Father in extending mercy and forgiveness to others.

The response to today’s psalm: “If you, O Lord, should mark our guilt, Lord, who would survive?” reminds us that we live by God’s mercy and grace. None of us can truly boast before Him. We make a covenant with Him in Baptism and despite His faithfulness we stumble repeatedly and very often, fall so badly. Yet He does not mark our guilt. Do we have a right to mark the guilt of others then?

When we hear Jesus’ parable of the unforgiving servant who had his fellow servant thrown in prison because of a debt despite being forgiven a much bigger sum by their master, we may be quick to see how wicked that servant was. Before we criticize him too much, let us look at the mirror of our hearts and recognize all those who guilt we are “marking.” Lent offers us a time to seek mercy and to extend it to others. Let us not let this opportune moment pass us by.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for your mercy; please help me to extend your love and forgiveness to others. Amen.

Faith Pearls: YOUCAT 524 – What does it mean to say, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us”?

Merciful forgiveness—the mercy that we show to others and the mercy that we ourselves seek—is indivisible. If we ourselves are not merciful and do not forgive one another, God’s mercy will not reach our hearts.

Hide a Treasure: “If you O Lord should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand?” Psalm 130:3 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Ezekiel 18:21-28; Ps 130: 1-8; Mt 5:20-26


Friday 4th March – Friday of the 3rd week of Lent

Reflection: Hosea 14: 2-10


Do you allow yourself to be hurt over and over by the same person? Do you trust the same person who has constantly hurt you? Do you find it easy to forgive people who have hurt you? It is only natural for our human mind to shield itself from emotional traumas most especially after recovering from one. However, God unlike we humans does not do this, irrespective of the number of times we consciously and unconsciously walk away from His presence. He is ever ready to forgive us due to the unconditional and unlimited love he has for us. It takes true love to be ready to draw nearer to God and likewise our neighbour through forgiveness.

Dear friends, it is of paramount importance that we show love to others by constantly forgiving them, for God does the same for us whenever we stray away from Him. Whenever we pray our Lord’s Prayer, we ask God to forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us (Matthew 6:12). Since we are all created in God’s image and likeness, we should be willing and ready extend the same mercy He show us to others. To love your neighbour as yourself thus requires that you show love to your neighbour through forgiveness. Forgiveness is truly “love in action”.

PRAYER: Merciful Father, fill my heart with love so I can forgive others as you forgive me. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 227Who instituted the sacrament of penance?

Jesus himself instituted the Sacrament of Penance when he showed himself to his apostles on Easter day and he commanded them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; If you retain the sins of any, they are retained”. Jesus forgave sins in the power of the Holy Spirit, and he handed that power on to his apostles. We fall into the arms of our heavenly Father when we go to a Priest and confess.

HIDE A TREASURE: “Happy are those who are merciful to others; God will be merciful to them!” Matthew 5:7 GNB

Today’s Readings: Hosea 4: 2-10; Psalm 81: 6-11,14,17; Mark 12: 28-34


Saturday 27th February – Saturday of the 2nd week of Lent

Reflection: Luke 15: 1-3, 11-32


The Sacrament of Reconciliation is one of the two sacraments of healing in the Church; it obtains pardon from God for the offense committed against Him and by the Priest’s sacramental absolution, God grants the penitent “pardon and peace”. In approaching the Sacrament of Reconciliation, the first step is Interior Penance; recognition of guilt with repugnance towards the evil actions we have committed. Next is a contrite heart; sorrow of the soul and detestation for the sin committed, together with the resolution not to sin again. Then comes the confession of sins to the priest after a diligent self-examination. Lastly, the Satisfaction; is fulfilling the penance given by the priest in order to make amends for the sin.

The Prodigal Son’s process of conversion stems from a recognition of his deep humiliation at finding himself obliged to feed swine, his reflection on all he had lost, a sorrowful heart for what he had done, his repentance and decision to declare himself guilty before his father; the journey home. Up to this point he had lived “outside “of himself; now in the language of the Gospel he “enters into himself”, that is, he begins to look inwards and see his true nature.

When he starts back, he finds that the father is out on the roadway ready to welcome him back. Forgiveness meets us more than halfway. The father’s generous welcome; the father’s joy – all these are characteristic of the process of conversion. The Beautiful robe, the ring and the festive banquet are symbols of that new life – pure, worthy and joyful – of anyone who returns to God and to the bosom of His Family, which is the Church.

Dear Friends, let us take time to reflect and identify areas of our life where we have strayed from God, let us be sorrowful for them and pray for the grace to fully complete our conversion process. Remember, no matter how bad your past might have been, you can always begin anew with God. Today God calls us to conversion; He calls us to journey home.

PRAYER: Lord, help me to remember always that my sins are not greater than your mercy. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: CCC 1470 – Effects of the Sacrament of Reconciliation

In this sacrament, the sinner, placing himself before the merciful judgment of God, anticipates in a certain way the judgment to which he will be subjected at the end of his earthly life. For it is now, in this life, that we are offered the choice between life and death, and it is only by the road of conversion that we can enter the Kingdom, from which one is excluded by grave sin.

HIDE A TREASURE: “Jesus spoke up “healthy people don’t need a doctor, but sick people do. I have come to call to repentance; I call sinners, not the righteous” Luke 5:31-32 CCB

Today’s Readings: Micah 7:14-15, 18-20, Psalm 103:1-4, 9-12; Luke 15:1-3, 11-32