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"Amen I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise."

First Sunday of Lent

February 21, 2021 •

Father Miller will offer a reflection on the Seven Last Words of Christ throughout Lent.

The Fathers of the Church tell us that these two thieves represent every human being on earth. You are either one or the other, there's no third option. You fit into one of those two categories. ... It's important that we understand them, how they are similar and how they are different, and why Jesus gave such a consoling message to one, and spoke nothing to the other.

They are both public sinners and criminals. They both committed the same offense against society and against God. They are being punished in the exact same way for those offenses. They both know what they did and know they deserve what they are getting.

The only difference we know between them is what is revealed by their words.

The "bad thief" - whose name we will never know - reveals his mind and heart to us in what he says to the Lord. ... He refuses to take responsibility for what he has done. He doesn't believe in Jesus as the Messiah. ... He wants to avoid suffering by any means necessary, even when it is deserved, let alone for love's sake. That's all that he cares about, and such an individual cannot be saved for one simple reason: they deny their own sin. They refuse to repent.

Now Saint Dismas is the complete opposite. He's the same kind of sinner, no better or worse in regards to the sins that he commits. But what he says to the Lord tells us everything we need to know about him and about his faith....

What does St Dismas do that we can imitate?

Gn 9:8-15; Ps 25:4-5, 6-7, 8-9; 1 Pt 3:18-22; Mk 1:12-15

Homily begins at 13:33

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