Bishop Lucas recently addressed the sacramental economy in his weekly column in the Catholic Times, "Grace and Mercy."
"The traditional meaning of the term economy," he wrote, "refers to the system set up within a family or hoursehold to use resources to provide for the needs of all. It should give great cause for celebration to know that God provides the sacraments in the church as the means for us to participate in the salvation won by Jesus Christ."
As he encouraged the faithful to meet Jesus in the Sacrament of Penance, His Excellency said that through this Sacrament "God provides this powerful sign of his faithful love for us who have turned back to unfaithfulness after our Christian initiation."
Even though this Sacrament is "an effective encounter with the risen Christ in which real sins are taken away by an act of real forgiveness," he recognized that because receiving the Sacrament "can be painful and embarrassing to face our sins, we might avoid doing so, making the mercy of God seem to us not so important."
Because "there are some things only God can do" and because "our spiritual life is stifled by sin," Bishop Lucas said "we should not ignore this renewed invitation to live now as full participants in the economy of grace."