This feast day took on new meaning for me when I entered the convent. I am a Sister of St. Joseph of Carondelet. Our Motherhouse is located in south St. Louis, MO. Our convent is big enough that we have our own chapel which is as big as our St. Pat’s church here in Green Bay.
Each year on this feast day the main altar was decorated in gold linens. The second you looked at the altar you knew this was a special feast day. I felt like a kid on Christmas morning when I walked in and experienced the beauty and the excitement that this feast generated. I’ve carried this experience with me through the years even though no church has ever captured the beauty of that first year in the convent for this feast.
What I have learned to appreciate over the years is that Jesus always intended for us to be part of his vision for our world. Jesus laid the foundation for a new world order and it has always been our responsibility to actually build that world.
Jesus literally turned the value system of first century Israel, under the auspices of the Roman Empire, upside down. Love your enemies, forgive those who have offended you, take care of the widows and the orphans, and the list goes on until there is no hunger, no homelessness, no slavery of any kind, no more war, no abandoned children, no abuse, no unemployment, and everyone’s human needs are met. This is the new world which is for the here and now and not only for after death.
Jesus paid a great price for this vision. If you asked him today, “Was it worth it?” what do you think he would say to you personally? Jesus tended to answer questions with a question of his own. Perhaps he’d ask you to show him what you have and are contributing to his world vision. What would you say?
Know that the Good Shepherd, Christ the King, looks on you with love no matter how you answer.
— Sr. Pat