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Sunday, February 21, 2010


Today's Gospel is about Jesus' temptation in the desert. As I was preparing my homily, it occurred to me that Tiger Woods' words on Friday were a good illustration of how temptation can sometimes lead to our ruin. So, I shared some of his words in my homily:

I knew my actions were wrong. But I convinced myself that normal rules didn't apply. I never thought about who I was hurting. Instead, I thought only about myself. I ran straight through the boundaries that a married couple should live by. I thought I could get away with whatever I wanted to. I felt that I had worked hard my entire life and deserved to enjoy all the temptations around me. I felt I was entitled. Thanks to money and fame, I didn't have far -- didn't have to go far to find them.

I was wrong. I was foolish. I don't get to play by different rules. The same boundaries that apply to everyone apply to me. I brought this shame on myself. I hurt my wife, my kids, my mother, my wife's family, my friends, my foundation, and kids all around the world who admired me.

As Woods himself acknowledged, simply having said the words of apology doesn't make everything better. This will only happen over time (so true for all of us and our struggles with temptation!) But I thought his words were a good example of the kind of self-reflection which Lent invites us to.