Monday, June 17, 2013

“It is in pardoning that we are pardoned.”

"Put up willingly with the faults of others if you wish others to put up with yours." – St John Bosco

Gospel Text: (MT 5:38-42)
Jesus said to his disciples:
“You have heard that it was said,
An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.
But I say to you, offer no resistance to one who is evil.
When someone strikes you on your right cheek,
turn the other one to him as well.
If anyone wants to go to law with you over your tunic,
hand him your cloak as well.
Should anyone press you into service for one mile,
go with him for two miles.
Give to the one who asks of you,
and do not turn your back on one who wants to borrow.”

We all know that our negative actions can certainly have unforeseen results. If a man is grumpy to his wife in the morning, she may pass that foul mood on to her colleagues at work all day, who may pass it on to their families, and so on. So why can’t the same be true when we act with kindness toward those who are unkind to us? Just as cool water puts out a raging fire, our calm and patient response to someone’s anger just may set off a cascade effect, as that person begins to treat everyone else with kindness!

Of course, there’s no guarantee that we will see such positive results. But that didn’t prevent Maria Goretti from forgiving her murderer. She died without seeing how her mercy would bring the man to repentance and conversion. And neither did it stop Pope John Paul II from visiting his assailant in prison. These acts of charity, and many more like them, still witness to us today. Like these saints, you too can be a “change agent.” Christ is in you, and he can teach you how to turn the other cheek—just as he did.

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