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CAC BAI DOC GIA GOI TOI - FR MARYKMOL-24TH SUNDAY PDF Print E-mail

"Seventy times seven"

"Forgive your neighbor's injustice; then when you pray, your own sins will be forgiven. Could anyone nourish anger against another and expect healing from the Lord?"​

Sirach 27:30-33
Dear Deacon Nguyen,

Peace—that elusive state of being that we all seek. Why does it seem so unattainable?
Maybe it's because we must first practice praying and meditating on God's Word before we can manage our anxieties. Maybe it's because we too often ask "When will they learn to live peacefully?" before searching our own hearts.

A 1981 United Nations resolution establishing a day "commemorating and strengthening the ideals of peace both within and among all nations and peoples" has brought hundreds of students to the UN in observance of Peace Day, and countless millions worldwide to commit to peace on September 21 every year. A wide array of goals is addressed through this multi-cultural gathering, not the least of which is ending poverty in all its forms. If we can commit to peace as a global community one day a year, I believe we can also do it the other 364.

Our Lord said "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you" in John's Gospel on the night before He was crucified. He also instructed Peter in Matthew's Gospel to forgive that same offending brother seventy times seven. Did our Savior mean we are to stop at 490? I think he meant we were to lose count. There should be interpersonal and international conditions of reconciliation—at home and in the world—not solely an effort to stop war.

Prayer for 24th Sunday in Ordinary Time​

I am tired, Lord, of forgiving
repeated and unrepentant insults
and countless slights and injuries.
I am weary, Lord,
of turning the other cheek
to those who only want to hurt
humiliate or ignore me.

And You, Lord God, answer:
"Yeah, me too!"

Lord, I sin so many times each day
doing evil and failing to do good
and countless times I return to you
begging Your mercy and love
and without hesitation
You bestow on me
Your gentle forgiveness.

Make me ever mindful then
of my infinite need for
Your boundless grace
and let me freely, joyfully
forgive others as many times
as You have forgiven me.

Amen.

~ Father Joseph R. Veneroso, M.M.
Dinh, if we're still harboring un-forgiveness, if we're still wearing our offenders' crimes against us like medals of war, then perhaps the third line of the "Our Father" might help convince us: "Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us." The measure with which we forgive is in exact proportion to that which will be doled out to us someday, and He'll stop counting if we do.

Sincerely yours in Christ,
Father Raymond J. Finch, M.M.

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