Friday, March 15

Today’s Prayer and Reflection:

You will be thrown into prison. (Matthew 5:25)

J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings centers around a magical ring that gives its wearers a dark power over others. The ring is so evil that even those who don’t want to exercise that dark power find themselves falling under its spell.

What that mythical ring did to its wearer, anger can do to us. When someone has hurt us, especially someone we trusted, the anger that we feel can be so strong that it takes hold of us. We may even hold on to it because it gives us a kind of power over that person—they can’t reconcile with us as long as we remain angry at them.

That’s why we need to take Jesus’ warning about anger seriously. He describes a scenario in which anger leads to a man being thrown in prison. Tolkien’s ring has the power to, as the book says, “in the darkness bind them.” Similarly, we can bind people in darkness when we let our anger harden into bitterness and resentment. But ironically, we too are left bound up and in spiritual darkness if we persist. We end up in a kind of prison of our own making.

The only way out is to forgive. If you want to be free, then work on setting free whoever has made you angry. It’s not always easy, and it’s not always something we can do on our own. Thank God we have Jesus, whose mercy has the power to melt our hearts so that we can forgive!

If there is someone you are struggling with, try visualizing that person for a moment. Now put Jesus into the picture. Imagine he is standing with both of you and looking at each of you with love. Think about how his forgiveness extends to both of you. Then say a simple prayer, something like “Jesus, help me let go of my anger. I want to feel your love and mercy for this person so that I can forgive.”

Genuine, heartfelt forgiveness may not happen all at once. But God’s mercy always wins. If you can keep praying for the grace to forgive, he will unlock your prison door and bring you into his freedom.

“Lord, help me to live in the freedom of your Spirit and to renounce all anger and bitterness.”

Reprinted with permission of The Word Among Us, 7115 Guilford Dr #100, Frederick, MD 21704,

Today’s Announcements:

  • Happy Birthday to Matthew Chouest! Celebrating a birthday this weekend are Kaline Cibene, Cayden Caillavet, Mrs. Jean Benoit and Mr. Orin Eleuterius!
  • We will be having a St. Patrick’s Day Dance for our junior high students (grades 7-8) on Saturday, March 16, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. The cost to attend is $5. There will also be a parent social for parents of junior high students.
  • St. Vincent de Paul is hosting a Beach Clean Up on Sunday, March 24, and they are seeking volunteers to assist. The event begins at 2 p.m. at the Long Beach Pavillion next to the harbor. Please let Mrs. Rosetti know if you are interested in assisting.
  • Good luck to the varsity track team as they participate in Pass Christian’s track meet on Saturday – the start time is 10:00 a.m.
  • Science Olympiad team members need to see Ms. Moon as soon as possible.