A Call to Repentance

by Sr. Juliemarie McDonald, SND on 01/08/2015

in Ordinary Time

The Baptism and the Lord–Ordinary Time
January 11, 2015

“You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”
(Mark 1:11)

A Call to Repentance

With John the Baptist we wonder, “Why?”
Why would the Son of God ask John for the Baptism of Repentance?
Since Baptism of the Spirit unites humanity to God, perhaps
Baptism of Repentance united Jesus more fully to humanity.
John was calling the people to repentance.
Perhaps Jesus wanted the people to see he was human, too.

To be truly repentant, one has to change.
We are reminded to begin again.
Whatever your age, the Gospel reading is calling us to a “Do-Over!”

In Baptism you were given freedom from sin.
Sinfulness attached you again to slavery.
Jesus freed you once. Can he not free you again?

Look inward.
What is the greatest habitual sin you do over and over again?
Stop being remorseful.
“Remorse is impotence; it will sin again.
Only repentance is strong; it can end everything.” (Honore De Balzac)

Repentance cuts the cord of sin, freeing you once more.
Repentance is your “Do-Over.”
Live differently.

Walk the way of Jesus, not your sinful way.
His way leads you to the Father.
May the Father say of you what he said of his Son.
“You are my beloved Son/daughter; with you I am well pleased.”

For Reflection and Sharing:

  1. What is the difference between remorse and repentance?
  2. Why do you think Jesus ask for the Baptism of Repentance?
  3. What is the difference between Baptism of the Spirit and Baptism of Repentance?
  4. In what ways does sinfulness take away our freedom?
  5. What stands in the way of people changing from a sinful life to a life lived by Jesus?
  6. How can you help someone who habitually offends the Lord?
  7. Who might help you to overcome bad habits that take away your freedom?

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Jerry January 10, 2015 at 11:42 am

#6 asks ‘How can you help someone who habitually offends the Lord.’ One way is to simply ask that person to go to confession each time s/he does that sin. Simply, that is repentance. If I don’t have remorse the first several confessions, don’t worry, that will come.
The final sentence of the prayer says: “May the Father say of you ‘You are my beloved son/daughter;” Actually the Father DOES already say that to each of us. We don’t need to pray that he MAY, because he already looks on us as his sons/daughters. If we could understand that, it would be much easier to come to repentance, knowing we are not rebuffed.

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Sr. Juliemarie McDonald, SND February 26, 2015 at 4:09 pm

Thanks for your comment. I guess I was making a distinction in my own mind…writing for those not so aware of the Love our good God has for all of us. Jm

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