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Since 1732, the Redemptorists — a congregation of missionary priests and brothers — have followed in Jesus’ footsteps, preaching the Word and serving the poor and most abandoned.
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Lent 10: Friday of the first week

What was the “righteousness of the Pharisees” our Lord was complaining about in today’s Gospel? Simply put, the Pharisees liked looking good rather than being good. They were interested in fine clothes, places of honor, and grandiose titles.

Sound familiar? The Pharisees are not dead. They live on—sometimes in people like you and me.

Why is Facebook so popular? Perhaps because it helps people preen and show off with photos, clever quotes, and inflated narratives. Who will know?

But Lent is a time for seeing ourselves as Jesus sees us. His standards go to the heart—our hearts. He sees not just actions but motives. He wants us to honor our neighbor in word and deed, to be concerned about the needs and struggles of others, no matter who’s looking. He wants us to live for God and his kingdom alone.

That’s why the sacrament of confession is so important during the Lenten season. It helps us face Jesus in humility and truth.

“Make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit” (Ezekiel 18:31).

Father E. Patrick Lynch, C.Ss.R.
Christiansted, St. Croix, Virgin Islands

Scripture readings for today: Ezekiel 18:21-28; Psalm 130; Matthew 5:20-26