A crowd of Catholics arrived to celebrate the sacrament of reconciliation.
This sacrament prepares one to receive the Eucharist at Mass. An examination of conscience was led by the presider as he walked the assembly through the ten commandments. Short, vivid questions were asked of those present as they assessed their daily living.
Did money, power, or sex dominate my love for God primarily, was one such question.
Such behavior violates the first commandment: I am the Lord your God. You shall not have strange gods before me. Biblical basis for them emerge from Deuteronomy 5 and Exodus 20 where the commandments are noted.
Participants approached one of several confessors to audibly voice violations of God's laws.
After a penance and absolution was given to the penitent by the priest, those present returned to their pew to pray an act of sorrow or contrition resolving to sin no more.
This powerful sacrament is healing in many ways.
Scriptures state that it is important for believers to confess their sins one to another.
Even more importantly, Jesus is to have told apostles that they may forgive sins.
Advent, a time of joyful preparation for the anniversary of the birth of Jesus, involves four weeks to make a difference.
Trappist Thomas Merton said this:
"We do not understand that this business about the crib is the real revolution that once for all turned everything upside-down so that nothing has ever been, or can ever be, the same again."
Advent is an appropriate time to return to the Lord, the real Jesus as Christians know him as the historical Jesus and the Christ of faith.
Jesus is far from a plastic Jesus made in one's own image and likeness.
No, believers imitate his real presence as it is recorded in sacred scripture.
How far have we distanced ourselves from the Jesus of two thousand years ago?
If one is to know Jesus, one has to hang out with him in his Word, and, in prayer.
We come to know family and friends, and, spouse, by spending quality time with them, no?