When we have ‘Come and See’ vocation weekends the Sisters present share their own stories – how they came to be Sisters and in particular how they came to be Sisters of Charity of St. Paul the Apostle. When we do this it is amazing how many similarities there are. But the overriding one is that we met or knew someone in the order or somebody else did and pointed us in that direction. In this Gospel we have a similar situation right at the beginning – the Greeks went to Philip who went to Andrew (both incidentally Greek names) and they came to Jesus.
When we think back to those who brought us to our faith, to Jesus – for many of us it is our parents, teachers, priests, friends, colleagues. It is more than just being baptised and receiving the sacraments. Who helped us develop our close personal relationship with God? And here’s a challenge – who do WE bring to Jesus? Who do we help develop their relationship with God?
Later in the passage Jesus says ‘If a man serves me, he must follow me’. He is not just talking generally – He is talking to you and to me, to all of us. We have to be where He is – He is with the poor, the vulnerable, the needy, the lonely, the sick, the sad, the rich, the young, the old and all those in between. We are privileged to have this season of Lent as a time of reflection, a time to remind us what our faith means to us. It may also serve as a way of pushing us further, to live our faith at a deeper level, to develop our prayer life, our relationship with God but also to develop and build up our relationships with others.
Lent, therefore, can be a time to mend quarrels, seek out the lost, to help guide them back – members of our own families, friends or those who were members of our parishes in the past. It is always good to pause at this stage in Lent to see how we are doing – how is Lent going for us? Are we any different from what we were before Lent began? If not, why not? There’s still a couple of weeks to go – still time to change.
Sr. Margaret Mattison