SAINT AGNES CATHEDRAL 533 South Jefferson Springfield, MO 65806 EXTRAORDINARY FORM OF THE MASS: Celebrant Rev. Jeffery A. Fasching
December 11th, 2011 Third Sunday of Advent (Gaudete Sunday)
Epistle: Phil. 4: 4-7
Gospel: Jn. 1: 19-28
Mass Schedule December 12th through December 16th
Monday-Feria of Advent-NO LATIN MASS
Tuesday-Saint Lucy, Virgin & Martyr
Thursday-Requiem Mass + Deacon Bill McNamee
Christians are a people of joy! When we sin we lose our joy because we offend God. However, if we repent and purify ourselves in the sacrament of penance God will always forgive us. True peace and joy is the result of nothing other than remaining faithful to God and embracing the Cross. We must remember that Advent is a season of repentance and penance. Those who know God realize that enduring afflictions with patience and faith will always strengthen our faith and ultimately lead to joy.
John the Baptist preached repentance and exemplified a life of penance. Concerning the value of penance, the Council of Trent teaches: “…penances greatly detach penitents from sin; they act like a bridle to keep them in check, and make them more cautious and vigilant in the future. They also heal the after-effects of sin and destroy evil habits acquired through a bad life…Besides, when we suffer in satisfaction for our sins we conform ourselves to Christ Jesus who made satisfaction for our sins (cf. Rom. 5.10; 1 Jn. 2.1f)…; this gives us the surest pledge that, while suffering with him, we shall also be glorified with him (Rom. 8.17).”
Penance atones for sin, satisfies the demands of God’s holiness and justice, pays the debt of temporal punishment due to sin, restores glory to God, and averts divine punishment. It focuses the penitent’s mind more clearly on God and increases sensitivity to spiritual values. Penance intensifies sorrow for sin and desire for holiness. It repairs and heals the harmful effects which sin has done to one’s self, to other persons, and to the social order. Furthermore, penance weakens the bonds of sinful attachments. It gives the penitent better control over unruly nature and deters the penitent from committing sin in the future. Penance strengthens the penitent’s resolve to overcome sin and advance in virtue. Finally, penance conforms the penitent to the likeness of Christ’s passion and therefore prepares the penitent to share the glory of His resurrection!
Sincerely in Christ,
Rev. Jeffery A. Fasching