This past Sunday afternoon, I came home to recover after two wonderful Kirkin' o' the Tartan worship services. I ate lunch and watched the Falcons play another inspired game. But then I changed the channel and started watching the Pope's Mass in Philadelphia. Almost a million people were gathered outside to attend this event.
I have to admit I was not expecting that much when it came to the Pope's visit to the U.S. But something special took place this past week. I have not seen anything like it in my lifetime. The Wall Street Journal created a whole section dedicated to the Pope's visit. Every page talked about what he was saying and what it all meant. I can't recall ever seeing that much coverage of the positive side of the Christian faith.
Listening to Pope Francis' simple but profound words moved me to tears. I am not exactly sure why. Maybe it
was the hope that people would hear these words of Christ coming from such a genuinely authentic person, and folks would be open to taking the next step in their faith journey -- coming closer to God.
I was amazed at how almost all of the media coverage was so positive. For a period of time, everyone focused on things that really matter. Positive comments came from a wide range of folks - Catholics and Protestants -- but also those who did not seem to be particularly religious, yet found something appealing and winsome in how the Pope shared and lived out his message.
Philadelphia's streets were packed with smiling faces of people who seemed glad simply to be there. When the Pope invited folks to "pass the peace" -- everyone reached out with a handshake or a hug to greet each other. The walls that often divide us appeared to come down -- if only for a while.
I am grateful for how this Pope models the love of Christ. I want to learn from him how to do that better. I hope you will pray with me that what we are seeing is the working of God's Spirit changing our world for the better!
Prayer for Today
Thank you God, for your servants like Pope Francis, who show us the humility of Christ in how they serve others. Help us all to do the same. In Christ we pray. Amen.