CALLING THE CANDIDATES TO CONTINUING CONVERSION

Homily ·Lent
By Archbishop Gomez
Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels
March 04, 2012


My brothers and sisters in Christ, and especially you dear candidates,1

This is a great joy for me to celebrate these sacred mysteries with you today!

I am especially happy to receive you, dear candidates! Today is a great day for each one of you and for your families and sponsors. But it is also a great day for our whole Catholic Church. There is great rejoicing in heaven today for each of you who are coming to Jesus Christ and preparing for full initiation into his Church!

From now on, your full participation in the sacramental life of the Church will help you to grow in the knowledge and love of Jesus Christ.

As I said to the Catechumens last week, there are no coincidences in God’s creation. Nothing in our lives is just a random happening. Each one of us is here in this beautiful Cathedral today because we are all seeking God. And each one of us is here because God is seeking us and calling us to fuller communion with him.

Our lives are a journey. And that is why it is fitting that we prepare for these rites of Christian initiation during Lent.

Our Lenten journey is meant to be a symbol for us, a reminder that our lives are a journey to God.

Un día de gran alegría para cada uno de ustedes, sus Familias, Parroquias, la Arquidiócesis de Los Ángeles y la Iglesia Universal. El cielo se alegra porque cada uno de ustedes esta respondiendo a la llamada de Jesús de seguirlo y se están preparando para su recepción en la Iglesia Católica.

Nuestra vida es una peregrinación hacia la Vida Eterna, la Casa del Padre Eterno y para tener éxito y llegar necesitamos ir continuamente rectificando el camino con una conversión permanente. Cada día debemos de crecer un poquito en el amor de Dios y para eso necesitamos la humildad de reconocer nuestras faltas y corresponder con generosidad a la gracia de Dios!

Every Lent begins with the story of Jesus’ temptation in the desert. And on the second Sunday of Lent every year, we hear the Gospel account of the Transfiguration.

By his Transfiguration, Jesus today is giving us a beautiful glimpse of our destiny and our “destination.” He is showing us what our earthly pilgrimage is leading us to.

The Transfiguration is a sign of Jesus’ resurrection. And the Transfiguration of Jesus is a promise of our own resurrection.

And the Transfiguration reveals to us the mystery of the Holy Trinity. The Holy Spirit comes in the form of a cloud and overshadows the mountain. And out of this cloud, the Father’s voice speaks and declares, “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him!”

My brothers and sisters, these are great words of hope and encouragement for us today. God our Father has given us his own beloved Son — to be with us, to teach us, and to intercede for us.

At the end of the Transfiguration today, the disciples found themselves looking around. And as we heard, they “no longer saw anyone but Jesus alone with them.”

This is a beautiful message for us, my brothers and sisters. Jesus alone is with us too. Jesus is with us when we are afraid and when we are suffering. He is with us when sometimes we cannot feel God’s presence or his love. He is with us when we are having difficulty finding purpose in our lives.

And if Jesus is with us — if God is for us, who can be against us?

Cada ano la Cuaresma empieza con el pasaje de las Tentaciones de Jesús en el desierto y el segundo domingo de Cuaresma con la Transfiguración de Jesús.

Con este pasaje de la Transfiguración, Jesús nos da una pequeña muestra de nuestro destino y del lugar al que estamos destinados. Nos ensena hacia donde nos lleva nuestro peregrinaje terrenal.

Dios Padre nos da a su propio Hijo para estar con nosotros, para ensenarnos y para que interceda por nosotros.

Al final del pasaje los discípulos se quedan solo con Jesús! Jesús esta con nosotros también y con El lo podemos todo! Siempre nos acompaña y nos hace sentir su presencia sobre todo en los momentos difíciles. Es El quien da sentido a nuestra vida!

My dear candidates, you are starting out on a great adventure! We are all praying for you as we make our way to the Easter vigil during these 40 days!

Let us examine ourselves these coming days. What are we still holding back from God? What do we have in our lives that is getting in the way? That is stopping us from giving ourselves completely to God?

My brothers and sisters, let’s not hold anything back from God!

Let us all take strength and encouragement from these readings today. Let us take up our cross daily and follow him more closely during this Lenten season.2

Finally, let us ask Mary, Mother of God and our Mother, to help us to listen to his Word and to follow his example, so your preparation for Easter will be a joyful time of knowing and loving her Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.

1. Readings (Second Sunday of Lent, Year B): Gen, 22:1-2, 9a, 10-13, 15-18; Ps. 116:10, 15-19; Rom. 8:31b-34; Mark 9:2-10. 

2. Luke 9:23.

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