FORT WAYNE — “A man is repaired in an instant by divine grace,” said St. Thomas Aquinas.
How long has it been since you felt all the pieces were in place?
Be made whole again. The Lord is waiting to embrace those who seek reconciliation with Him, which is why a special invitation is extended to those who have been away from the sacrament of reconciliation to take advantage of “The Light Is On For You,” a Lenten opportunity to obtain the graces of the sacrament.
The Light Is On For You is a diocesanwide initiative that exists in addition to penance services scheduled in individual parishes through the period of atonement that is Lent. It will take place from 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, March 10 in all 14 counties of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend. During that time, all 81 Catholic churches will be open and prepared to receive those who wish to make a confession or sit in quiet reflection.
For many Catholics, both those brought up in the Church and those formerly of Protestant or non-Christian faiths, the sacrament of reconciliation can seem a bit frightening. For some it may have been a long time since they have made a confession. Perhaps they struggle with disbelief, despair, human weakness, addictions, lingering resentment or grief. And yet, how wonderful it is to be free from these chains.
The Lord longs for all people to seek reconciliation with Him, the Bible says, which is why a particular Light Is On For You invitation is extended to everyone who hasn’t received the sacrament for months or years. After all, these are the days of a renewed evangelization, for proclaiming glad tidings anew. Jesus says, “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest” (Mt 11:28) — which is the very essence of the Good News. Within the sacrament, the most merciful, loving, forgiving God will be waiting.
When a person goes to confession, Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades said in 2018, “we are making straight the way of the Lord in our lives. And then what happens? We experience joy, the joy of God’s mercy and forgiveness.”
Guides on how to make a good confession, examinations of conscience and prayers used during the Rite of Reconciliation will be available in the parishes for anyone unsure of how to participate in the sacrament.
All Catholics within the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend are also encouraged to attend a parish reconciliation service during Lent and to reach out and invite others to come back home on March 10.
For more information visit www.diocesefwsb.org/light. Those who wish to obtain the sacrament but require special assistance to do so should contact Allison Sturm, ministry specialist in pastoral care, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 260-422-4611 ext. 3384.
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