I attended Sunday mass tonight at 6pm at St. Christopher’s Catholic Church in Grandview, Ohio. They call it “Last Chance Mass” because it’s the latest mass there is at the parish and if you want to get in your chance at Sunday service, you better show up at 6pm. It was amazing!
Maybe it was because COVID-19 has been making me feel a little shipwrecked in my faith, or like I was Peter and I’d taken my eyes off of Jesus a little too long and I’m starting to sink in the water. This mass didn’t have any particularly special bells or whistles attached to it tonight, but it was awesome because it was just what I needed in just the moment I needed it. People were appropriately spaced out but welcoming. My mask was hot and stifling, but I felt lucky to be be out in public and glad the doors to the church were still open.
The contemporary music at this early evening mass was subtle, but heartfelt and moving. In a time when others are warning you not to sing for fear of the virus spreading, this sweet church’s music was flowing out and touching our very souls. In fact, one line of one particular song reminded us that our souls are not alone and that Jesus is in fact with us, even in our weakest, neediest hours. The music reminded me that while in doubt-ridden times we may feel as if our faith has been ship-wrecked, God is still with us. He never leaves us alone even if it seems as if we are on a desert island.
The gospel reading today from Matthew 13:1-9, reminds us about the parable Jesus told about the sower and the seeds. Jesus explained how some seed fell on the path and birds ate it up, while other seed was cast upon rock, other upon thorns, but the seeds that were planted in rich soil grew well. Jesus then told the crowd, “Whoever has ears ought to hear.”
Everything about today’s visit to church reminded me that God is among us. I left that church tonight on fire to tell you all about what I heard. He wants to get our attention and have us listen to him. I know sometimes we get bogged-down with the worries of the world; I know right now it seems like 2020 has dished out more than her fair share. But God is with us and his love will fix everything if we allow him to work in our hearts. We just need to listen.