Fr. Raymond Gramata, Pastor
|November 29, 2015
From Your Pastor
As we continue reading Pope Francis’ letter from last week, let us listen carefully to his words and let them take root in our lives.
“One of the serious problems of our times is clearly the changed relationship with respect to life. A widespread and insensitive mentality has led to the loss of the proper personal and social sensitivity to welcome new life. The tragedy of abortion is experienced by some with a superficial awareness, as if not realizing the extreme harm that such an act entails. Many others, on the other hand, although experiencing this moment as a defeat, believe that they have no other option. I think in particular of all the women who have resorted to abortion. I am well aware of the pressure that has led them to this decision. I know that it is an existential and moral ordeal. I have met so many women who bear in their heart the scar of this agonizing and painful decision. What has happened is profoundly unjust; yet only understanding the truth of it can enable one not to lose hope. The forgiveness of God cannot be denied to one who has repented, especially when that person approaches the Sacrament of Confession with a sincere heart in order to obtain reconciliation with the Father. For this reason too, I have decided notwithstanding anything to the contrary, to concede to all priests for the Jubilee Year the discretion to absolve of the sin of abortion those who have procured it and who, with contrite heart, seek forgiveness for it. May priests fulfill this great task by expressing words of genuine welcome combined with a reflection that explains the gravity of the sin committed, besides indicating a path of authentic conversion by which to obtain the true and generous forgiveness of the Father who renews all with His presence...”
We know that the Pope is expressing a concern that continues to happen in our world on a large scale, but listen also to his words that express the loving forgiveness of the Father. Forgiveness is not something out there somewhere in the universe, forgiveness begins with us. It begins with us asking the Father to forgive us, but more especially asking ourselves to forgive ourselves. That is the more important step - to forgive ourselves. In order to have forgiveness take root in our life, we have to forgive ourselves. You may ask why? Because, in order to seek forgiveness from another, we must forgive ourselves first. If I cannot forgive myself I am missing the compassion of forgiveness that Christ has given to me first and I must imitate Christ. So in the coming Year of Divine Mercy, let us look at the loving reflections of the Savior upon us and imitate His actions to one another.