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churchGreetings in the name of our Lord! I hope you are having a blessed Lent. As we continue in our Lenten journey towards Holy Week we are made more aware of our need for repentance and transformation. Indeed, the gospels are about transformation and about Jesus drawing us into his own life, and death, and resurrection. The gift of repentance allows us to admit that we have sinned, ask for God’s forgiveness, and receive God’s power to change – to be transformed. We are complex creatures and our sins are just as complex. In most situations where sin is involved many different factors are at work. Painful memories from the past, worldly influences, sensitive family issues, divisions, political, social, and economic differences waging conflict and confusion, selfishness, pride, irrational thinking, even unhealthy issues may be involved. It may be that we are not even aware of their presence.

The prevailing theme of this season, and more so Holy Week itself, is a focus on God’s invitation to repentance as a step towards transformation. The power of repentance lies in its capacity to destroy every one of these aforementioned negative influences. Scripture encourages us: “if we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). Far from being an opportunity for selfcondemnation or increased guilt, repentance is meant to be an experience of freedom and liberation by helping to release all the “baggage” surrounding our human weakness and brokenness.

The more we desire an intimate relationship with Jesus, the more eager the grace of repentance grows in and floods our hearts, drawing us closer and closer to experience and know his love more deeply. God’s grace is always available to aid us in our journey. It always seeks to teach us, empower us, and give us power to become who we were created to be. It always seeks to find us and bring us home. May Holy Week deepen the intimacy of our relationship with Jesus and prepare our hearts and minds to celebrate the Paschal Mystery of Easter.