REPENTANCE

APOSTOLIC INSIGHT ~ What can the Apostles and Church Fathers tell us about our times? What advice do they have for our problems? Here are some of their thoughts—

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We live in a time of moral indiscretion that happens everywhere from Washington, D.C., to your home town. While people may feel they can get away with these transgressions, the truth is they are building a burden in their own souls. Sooner or later, they must seek relief. No matter how much they kid themselves, they will eventually know they need to find forgiveness. Everyone needs insight and direction in finding help. Here is some of what the first spiritual guides offer us in seeking direction.

St. Ephraim the Syrian
The sins of those who ask for pardon are forgiven. But see that you do not harbor hatred for your brothers when you ask for forgiveness of your sins.

St. Thalassios
As wax melts before fire, so does an impure thought before the fear of God.

St. Basil the Great
Repentance consists in no longer doing the same things. For he who reverts to the same sin is like a dog returning to its vomit. (II Peter 2:22), and like the person who cards wool into the fire, or pours water into a container full of holes.

A Desert Father
It was said of an old man that when his thoughts said to him “Relax today and repent tomorrow,” he retorted, “No, I am going to repent today. And may the will of God be done tomorrow.”

St. Isaac the Syrian
Repentance is the ship, and fear is its helmsman, while love is the divine harbor. Fear leads us aboard the ship of repentance, takes us across the fetid sea of life, and guides us to the divine harbor, which is love.

St. Clement of Rome
For whatever our transgressions, and whatever we have done through the attacks of the adversary, let us pray that we may be forgiven… for it is good for a man to confess his failings rather than harden his heart.

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