Friday, 1st Week in Lent February 23, 2024

Father Rick’s Three Minute Homily for Friday, 1st Week in Lent

February 23, 2024, Matthew 5:20-26
https://bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/022324.cfm

Outside the Box.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid up to 50 times stronger than heroin and 1000 times more potent than morphine. Over 150 people die every day from overdoses related to drugs like Fentanyl. (Fentanyl Facts – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/stopoverdose/fentanyl/index.html.

It is easy to read these statistics and get on with what we are doing. But in reality, we are all in this together. Seriously, people in our society, especially young people, are hurting so much that they risk taking a drug that can kill them. They face a monster daily and want some relief from the pain.

In today’s first reading, the prophet Ezekiel speaks clearly about life and death. Turn away from sin, and you will live. Turning away from sin or anything that harms us is not always easy and, for some, impossible. What to do?

Don’t feel helpless. We have Jesus living in us, suffering with these people. Spend a moment or two praying for someone under the influence of a drug or sinful behavior. Ask the Lord to let you carry some of their pain with Him. We are the Body of Christ, and if one part of the body suffers, so do all the members (1 Corinthians 12:21-16)

Gospel Challenge:

God can use our prayers and sufferings for someone who can’t overcome their illness. He will bring into their lives a person who will connect with them. I have seen more people than I can count who came to the Lord on their knees, asking for His mercy. And they got it.

St. Faustina wrote what Jesus told her, “The greater the sinner, the greater right they have to my mercy.” (The Second Greatest Story Ever Told, Michael Gately.)

Love Your Neighbor:
Please join me in praying for all baptized Catholics to be faithful to Jesus in the Holy Mass every weekend. Hail Mary, full of grace…

Mother Mary, “I am yours now and forever. Through you and with you, I always want to belong completely to Jesus.” The Surrender Novena – InHeartland. https://inheartland.com/pages/the-surrender-novena

Peace be with you.

Fr. Rick Pilger, I.C.
pastor
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