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Thursday, September 16, 1999

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Pope St. Cornelius
St. Cyprian

1 Timothy 4:12-16
Psalm 111
Luke 7:36-50

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whole-body repentance

"I tell you, that is why her many sins are forgiven — because of her great love. Little is forgiven the one whose love is small." —Luke 7:47

The Lord calls us to be baptized in repentance, that is, immersed in it. We should repent not only with our hearts and minds but with our whole bodies. In today's Gospel reading, a woman known as a sinner used her eyes to repent as she wept for her sins (Lk 7:38). She used her feet when she stood behind Jesus at His feet (Lk 7:38). She dried Jesus' feet with her hair (Lk 7:38). She used her hands to anoint His feet and kissed them with her lips (Lk 7:38). Let us repent from head to toe. Let us love enough to repent so deeply and thoroughly that we will love the Lord in thanksgiving totally and forever.

Examine your conscience. Cry for your sins. Go to Confession. Confess your sins. Do penance by serving the least of the brethren (Mt 25:40) and washing their feet (see Jn 13:4ff). In this way, we touch Jesus and wash His feet (see Mt 25:40). Greet the members of Christ's body with a holy kiss (e.g. 2 Cor 13:12). Repent with your whole body and your whole being.

Prayer:  Father, I hate sin because I love You.

Promise:  "Be a continuing example of love, faith, and purity to believers. Until I arrive, devote yourself to the reading of Scripture, to preaching and teaching." —1 Tm 4:12-13

Praise:  St. Cyprian was condemned to death for his faith in Jesus. To the decree, "It is decided that Thascius Cyprian should die by the sword," Cyprian responded with "Thanks be to God!"

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, February 22, 1999

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 24, 1999