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Sunday, April 3, 2016

Fr. Voigt- Command rejected; Credibility denied; Commendation forgotten.

Command rejected; Credibility denied; Commendation forgotten. 

Are you aware of the first command uttered by the Lord after He rose from the dead? Most are completely surprised to hear that Jesus after exposing His hands and feet breathe upon the apostles and told them:  "Whose sins you shall forgive; they are forgiven.  Whose sins you shall retain; they are retained."  The priesthood becomes the authority of Christ to forgive men's sins.  As ambassadors of this power to forgive the priests are to go forth and heal the souls of people bound by the sins committed.

In the world called "modern" sin has become a "psychological sickness" treated upon a couch.  Responsibility has become a dirty word.  In years past a personality was defined by his/her ability to accept responsibility for their words and actions.  Now we fail because we are sick.  In effect, the command of Christ to forgive sins has been rejected even in the Church He founded upon the weakness of the impetuous Peter.  The Menniger Institute of Psychology has produced a significant book entitled "Whatever became of Sin?"  If a person
were to accept the fact that man is fallen and that sin is in his blood then he has the potential to be forgiven.  Whence does this forgiveness come from?  

From the Credibility of the Author of all life we receive the assurance that our sins can be forgiven.  St. Thomas produced a great test for our Lord.  He said he would not believe in the resurrection unless he placed his fingers in the wounds of the hands and his hand into the wound on His Side.  This is a credibility test for only God has wounds as the poet remarks:

"Hast thou no scar on foot, side or hand?
I hear thee sung as mighty in the land,
I hear them hail your ascendant star,
Hast thou no scar, hast thou no wound?
Yet I was wounded by the archer's spent,
leaned Me against a tree and with encompassing beasts surrounding Me I swooned.
Hast thou no wound, hast thou no scar?
Yet as the Master so shall the disciple be; 
and pierced are the hands and feet that follow Me.
But thine are whole...Can he have followed far
who has no wound, no scar?

Every other "god" made by man rides to a throne amid a white stallion but our God didst stumble to a Cross to proclaim that Life shall conquer our greatest fear that of dying.  The deceit of the demonic is conquered by the Love that gave us life.  His wounds speak to our wounds today and He alone is credible because of His Scars.

Credibility has been denied by the Jewish philosophy of naturalism.  The supernatural, the sacred has been denied and the natural affirmed because we believe only what the senses tell us.  What a shallow life the naturalism of the Jewish elite offers us?  We want a heaven and we have been promised a heaven in the commendation that has been forgotten in our age:
"Blessed are they who have not seen; but believe."  
He Who conquered sin and death has spoken and His words are true and we are assured that there is a life beyond this world.  This trial is a short one and it demands that we never fail to love in spite of the hatred surrounding us.  Though they crucify us we return a blessing for they are sending us to our eternal home and setting us free from a world sick with sin.  "Blessed are they who have not seen; but believe."  

Brothers and sisters let us believe in the love that conquers death.  Let us believe in the freedom that comes from confessing our sins to the ambassadors of Christ, his priests. Let us not judge them, let that to God, instead let us pray for them and support them for they are greater than the angels.  Only the priests of God can say those powerful words:  "Thy sins are forgiven."  With sins forgiven then the words of consecration bring us the heaven we desire:  Union with Jesus, our Lord.  "This is My Body.  This is My Blood."  What angel can say these words?  None but a priest can utter these words and Christ is with us.  

May you continue to believe and live the Truth utter by God Himself.  Rejoice in this Easter season and accept the command; confirm the test and recall the commendation offered to us by our Lord Jesus Christ.

In the hearts of Jesus, Mary and Joseph,

Fr. Richard Voigt