“Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” Imagine the enormity of that statement! God comes to us in the flesh, the Trinity is made manifest, and then Christ comes out and tells us that the only appropriate response to all of these incredible things, is to change the orientation of our lives…and repent.
…There are many in the outside world that would look upon this custom as odd, just like they do at so many of the other mysteries (sacraments) of the Church. From an outside perspective, these mysteries of the Church seem like a bunch of hocus pocus, useless rituals that have no purpose, and no way of changing mankind and the world. But it has been the teaching of Christianity from the very beginning, that it is through the sacraments that the human race is truly transformed….
Beginning with the Annunciation, we see an angelic message of FAITH. Mary, although she did not understand what was happening, listened to the angel Gabriel when he told her that she was going to have a child conceived by the Holy Spirit. God was asking Mary to step out on faith rather than on her own understanding. Mary’s faith in God allowed her to respond: “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38).
“…We often think about sin as being something invisible and if there is no outward appearance, no one, including ourselves, has any idea of the weight that we are carrying. It is like the woman in today’s Gospel lesson, who is so weighed down by the extent of the “demons” that she has been carrying on her back that she cannot even lift her head. This is the question that we are asked to consider today: What is the weight of our sins?”