Thursday, November 12, 2009

Confession: Letting the Lord Draw Us Close

. . . Like the 72 disciples sent out by the Lord, he [the Bishop] must be one who brings healing, who helps to heal man's inner wound, a person's distance from God. The first and essential good which man needs is closeness to God himself. The Kingdom of God of which the Gospel passage speaks today is not something "next to" God, not some worldly condition: it is simply the presence of God himself, which is the truly healing force.

Here the Holy Father, in his homily for the Ordination of Bishops, reminds us of something that is essential to every person’s spiritual health – our closeness to God. Pope Benedict says that it is closeness to God that is our first and essential good. In other words, it’s what’s best for us. To be near God, in fact to be taken up into the great mystery of the Holy Trinity in heaven is the goal of our lives. Yet we are wounded with the wound of sin which distances us from God. It is the Bishop, and the priests who are extensions of his ministry, who bring healing to this wound and restore closeness with God.

This is why the Sacrament of Penance is so important. In that Sacrament the wounds of sin are healed and we once again, like the prodigal son, find ourselves in the house of our loving Father. How long has it been since your last confession? A month? A year? Five years? However long it has been, the Lord is calling to you…He desires to heal your wounds, He desires to draw you close.