Reconciliation restores communion among those whose bond of mutual belonging has been impaired or even severed.
The foundation of Reconciliation is a simple principle: what is common among human beings ought to prevail over every discord. This should especially be the concern of Jesus’ disciples, whose common bond through Baptism demands that they be responsible for building the unity of the Church and the missionary responsibility of building the unity of the entire human race.
The Paulist Fathers stand at the forefront of reconciliation through a wide pastoral process to address the needs of listening, healing, dialogue and reconciliation in the Church today.
Jesus Christ, present in Scripture and sacrament, is central to all that we do; he must always be the measure and not what is measured. Around this central conviction, the church’s leadership, both clerical and lay, must reaffirm and promote the full range and demands of authentic unity, acceptable diversity, and respectful dialogue, not just as a way to dampen conflict but as a way to make our conflicts constructive and a means to understand for ourselves and articulate for our world the meaning of discipleship of Jesus Christ.
Paulist Fr. Steven Bell is associate pastor of Newman Hall / Holy Spirit Parish at the University of California at Berkeley.
Paulist Fr. Frank Desiderio is first consultor, or chief advisor, to the president of the Paulist Fathers.
Paulist Fr. Thomas Kane is executive director of Paulist Reconciliation Ministries, Landings International and Paulist Pilgrimages.
Paulist Fr. Bartholomew Landry leads parish missions, revivals and days of recollection.
God of compassion,
You sent Jesus to proclaim a time of mercy
reaching out to those who had no voice,
releasing those trapped by their own shame,
and welcoming those scorned by society.
Make us ambassadors of reconciliation.
Open our ears that we may listen with respect and understanding.
Touch our lips that we may speak your words of peace and forgiveness.
Warm our hearts that we may bring wholeness to the broken-hearted
and dissolve the barriers of division.
Guide the work of your Church
and renew us with the Spirit of your love.
Help us and all people shape a world
where all will have a place,
where the flames of hatred are quenched,
and where all can grow together as one.
Forgive, restore and strengthen us through our Lord Jesus Christ.
I am convinced that this debate will not be settled by the changing of laws, but by the conversion of hearts.
Monday, Week two in Ordinary Time, January 20, 2020, Scripture, hecker 2: 18-22
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