In the Gospel reading today Jesus tells us that reconciliation should take precedence over an offering to God.

His teachings here are similar to Mark 11:25 where Jesus says “Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone; so that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.” Grudges do not just separate us from others, they separate us from God.

Lent is a time for repentance, but not just within the Confessional. Jesus wants us to forgive our brothers and sisters. He gave us the words “forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” Jesus’ spirit of forgiveness should be on our minds throughout our Lenten Journey.

Remember that, as the Psalm of today says, “For with the Lord is kindness and with Him is plenteous redemption.” Jesus is continuously telling us to forgive others and to not harbor resentment. When was the last time you received the Sacrament of Reconciliation?  Who do you need to reconcile with right now?

—Devyn Buschow is the Director of Youth Ministry at Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Duncanville, TX. She currently lives in the Dallas area with her husband, Justin, who also works in Catholic youth ministry.