Celebrities are recorded doing or saying bad things and increase their celebrity.
Politicians are caught in sin and scandal and go on to greater power and prominence.
Leaders of corporations, unions, and even churches bring great harm by their stewardship and seem unaffected.
Today’s first reading (Daniel 9:4b-10) gives us an example of recognizing one’s own sin and shame, as individuals and as a nation: the first and necessary step of repentance and recovery by the power of God’s grace.
We have sinned, been wicked and done evil;
we have rebelled
and departed from your commandments and your laws.
We have not obeyed your servants the prophets,
who spoke in your name
to our kings, our princes,
our fathers, and all the people of the land.
Justice, O Lord, is on your side;
we are shamefaced even to this day:
we, the men of Judah, the residents of Jerusalem,
and all Israel, near and far,
in all the countries to which you have scattered them
because of their treachery toward you.
O LORD, we are shamefaced,
like our kings, our princes, and our fathers,
for having sinned against you.
But yours, O Lord, our God,
are compassion and forgiveness!