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Please note that Diane Shaddix has passed away this past Friday. Her funeral Mass is scheduled for Saturday, September 16th at 10 AM at Sacred Heart with a reception directly following in the Parish Hall.
Thank you to our shepherd Fr. Bernard for his gracious and warm words to his flock. Thank yous to all Eureka parishioners for your loving assistance with the welcoming celebration for our beloved Fr. Bernard. Thanks to the hard work of the planning committee and Donna Dodd everything went smoothly. Many thanks to the Knights of Columbus and other hard-working individuals who set up the tables, decorated the Sacred Shed and took charge of the BBQ. The banner was lovely and the food delicious. May God bless our family in Christ.
Once again we are going to reflect on the virtue of forgiveness this week. Forgiveness is a cardinal ingredient of Christian living. This is a gift we can receive from an Almighty merciful God and at the same time it is our goal to offer it in abundance to others. The basic question asked in today’s Gospel is “should you not have had pity on your fellow servant, as I had pity on you?” A repentant erring brother begs for mercy and it would be very unchristian of us if we abstain from offering mercy and forgiveness.
The real motivation for forgiveness is “love.” I love and I do not want to lose my brother; therefore I ask for mercy. Refusing to forgive is refusing to love; that is why it is unholy to go without being compassionate and merciful. Love and forgiveness are complementary to each other and they go hand in hand. When I am forgiven, my reaction is deep appreciation and joy. Similarly if God has forgiven me I need to sing His praises.
A delicate CAUTION: while offering forgiveness the relation between love and forgiveness and the difference between forgiving a wrongdoer and enabling him/her to continue his/her wrong doing should be understood. Love bestows the goodness on the beloved. A person loves the sinner but condemns his/her sins. A wife who continues to accept the beating of her abusing husband could be an example of enabling him. There is nothing loving or forgiving about enabling a person to become worse. His good requires, first of all, that he stops hurting her and then that he repents his terrible treatment of her. If he is unrepentant, if he rejects goodness and love, then his wife’s forgiveness would be like a gift that can’t be given because he won’t receive it. He is creating no
space for her forgiveness to come in. She still loves him, but not his sins.
Similarly, what exists between us and God is our willingness to receive the gift of forgiveness offered by God. Repentance is the sign of willingness and it springs from our love for God. If we accept it the gift of God’s love and forgiveness will be given and received in abundance.
“Lord forgive me, I am a sinner.”
May God bless you.
Fr. Bernard D’Sa
The hours for the Sacred Heart Church office have been changed to Monday-Wednesday, 9:00am-4:00pm with a lunch break from 12-1pm.