Friday of the Third Week

Readings

Is 56:1-3a, 6-8
Ps 67:2-3, 5, 7-8
Jn 5:33-36

Reflection

The third week of Advent is all about Joy. Every year my family gets together post New Years Eve to democratically elect a word for the year. This year it was joy and I have been really cognizant of everything joyful around me. In today’s reading we see the phrase “make joyful in my house of prayer”, which really excites me about the type of place heaven can be. Heaven is a place where you can be joyful and share in love.     

As a child I would always picture Heaven as having a large gold gate with a temple in the clouds. There were staircases on each side leading up to a couple of chairs that God would sit with Jesus, Mary, all the saints, and disciples around them. At this age I was imagining heaven being a place where only the best children went and I would have to be serious and prayerful when I got there.

This image of heaven as a child has changed through out my life to a loving home of diversity and great joy. Today’s reading says, “For my house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples.” When reflecting upon this text I think about how important it is to be a person who welcomes diversity in their circles and around their dinner tables. We as Catholic’s more often than not get caught up in the hype of making it into heaven; with a specific image of what it means to be a “good Catholic” only affiliating ourselves with each other. Today’s reading touches upon “foreigners” and how they will be welcomed into the kingdom of God. I want to ask anyone who reads this reflection to look in the mirror and ask yourself the last time you welcomed diversity or a foreigner into your community and home.

Founder’s Chapel is a house of prayer filled with great joy and diversity. After Mass there is always time to connect with friends in the courtyard to catch up and share in laughs. I want to empower those in the tight university ministry circle to break it open and invite in diversity and foreigners during this post mass celebration.

Life is love and joy is spread a lot faster through a communal effort rather than an individual. With this God calls us to go as a community spreading love to others of every color, religion, and sexual preference. 

-Stephen Jordan '19