Saturday, January 14, 2017

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 229 - Part II.

YOUCAT Question n. 229 - Part II. What prepares a person for repentance?

(Youcat answer – repeated) The insight into one’s personal guilt produces a longing to better oneself; this is called contrition. We arrive at contrition when we see the contradiction between God’s love and our sin. Then we are full of sorrow for our sins; we resolve to change our life and place all our hope in God’s help.

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 1432) The human heart is heavy and hardened. God must give man a new heart (Cf. Ezek 36:26-27). Conversion is first of all a work of the grace of God who makes our hearts return to him: "Restore us to thyself, O LORD, that we may be restored!" (Lam 5:21). God gives us the strength to begin anew. It is in discovering the greatness of God's love that our heart is shaken by the horror and weight of sin and begins to fear offending God by sin and being separated from him. The human heart is converted by looking upon him whom our sins have pierced (Cf. Jn 19:37; Zech 12:10): Let us fix our eyes on Christ's blood and understand how precious it is to his Father, for, poured out for our salvation, it has brought to the whole world the grace of repentance (St. Clement of Rome, Ad Cor. 7, 4: PG 1, 224).

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) The reality of sin is often repressed. Some people even think that guilt feelings should be dealt with in a merely psychological way. But genuine guilt feelings are important. It is like driving an automobile: When the speedometer indicates that the speed limit has been exceeded, the speedometer is not responsible, but the driver is. The closer we come to God, who is all light, the clearer our dark sides come to light also. Yet God is not a light that burns but, rather, a light that heals. That is why repentance impels us to go into the Light in which we will be completely healed.

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 1433) Since Easter, the Holy Spirit has proved "the world wrong about sin" (Cf. Jn 16:8-9) i.e., proved that the world has not believed in him whom the Father has sent. But this same Spirit who brings sin to light is also the Consoler who gives the human heart grace for repentance and conversion (Cf. Jn 15:26; Acts 2:36-38; John Paul II, DeV 27-48).    

(The next question is: What is penance?)

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