Fr. Geary’s Letter, 3-19-2023

Dear Parishioners of St. James:

                 Praised be Jesus Christ!

                 Sin blinds us from seeing God as He really is and    ourselves as we really are. Jesus teaches that if we admit our sins (our blindness), then we will be given proper sight. But if we say that our sight is fine (that is, if we deny our sins), then our sins remain. Jesus said it perfectly, “I came into this world for judgment, so that those who do not see might see, and those who do see might become blind” (Jn. 9:39).

                 Jesus instituted the Sacrament of Penance so that our spiritual sight might be restored after we confess our sins. We cannot be forgiven if we do not admit our blindness. “If we say, ‘We are without sin,’ we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we acknowledge our sins, he (God) is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrongdoing. If we say, ‘We have not sinned,’ we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” (1 Jn. 1:8-10). 

                 On Wednesday, March 29th, priests will be available from 8:00 am – 6:00 pm at St. James Church to hear confessions of all who want God’s forgiveness. This extraordinary day is especially for those who have been away from the Sacrament of Penance for a year or more (those who come regularly should allow others to go to Confession on this special day so as not to discourage penitents by seeing long lines as they enter the church). Examinations of conscience will be available in the narthex to help penitents make a thorough confession of their sins in order to experience the infinite mercy and love of God.

                 The regular reception of God’s mercy in the Sacrament of Penance is encouraged for all so that our spiritual sight might always be sharp. Encourage those you know who are away from God’s grace that they might return to our Father’s house on the 29th. The Lord is waiting for them in the Sacrament of Mercy in order to show them His love and to restore them in His light.

God bless you,

 Fr. Geary

Published by St. James, Belvidere

Saint James Catholic Church, Belvidere, IL