franciscan - January 1999
© Copyright, The Society of Saint Francis, 1998
. . . this little room
by Paschal SSF
Near the chapel, overlooking the garden, there is a small room with a chair, a kneeling desk and a crucifix . . . if only the walls of this little room could talk! If so, these walls would rejoice over burdens laid down, the fear faced and the hope grasped. Here, in the transparent meeting of an individual with God, the Divine Comedy is effected and joy replaces sorrow, laughter follows tears, here, time after time, year after year, regularly or just once in a lifetime, Jesus Christ smiles the bruised Christian into smiling again.
As a teenager, I discovered that ‘Confession’ was always a returning to someone . . . to Christ. When I failed in friendship with Him, with others or within myself. I knew that there was always a way through the consequences of my ‘gone-wrongness.’ I needn’t be paralysed by my mistakes – what a relief to discover that I could ‘begin again’ and have another go.
Now, as a Confessor, who sits often in this little room, I assist others to discover the reconciliation that is
offered by God in Christ. The aspect of penitence and reconciliation, of ‘dying and rising’ from self to Christ
is at the heart of the Christian experience. In an undiluted way, I’m involved in the regular assurance of God’s
promise of new life for wounded hearts and lives.
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