This past weekend there was quite a lineup of events and this next weekend seems to be panning out to much the same. At any given hour there can be an event in the church building each appearing vastly different from the other. There is of course the regular Mass schedule of Saturday morning and then the weekend Masses. Confessions are thrown in. There are weddings, funerals, and baptisms all requiring sensitivity toward those in attendance. Sitting before the Blessed Sacrament I wondered if I was much like the news anchor putting on an appropriate face for any particular story. This disturbed me. Church needs to be sincere and what makes what we do here any different than the T.V. anchors?
One major difference seemed to leap out. There is one common thread in the Church that ties all of these seemingly disparate events together. Whether we are laying a sister or brother to rest, uniting two people in marriage, welcoming a soul into the Church, or what have you, they are tied together in hope: the hope of a blessed life in Christ, the hope of a loving marriage, the hope for eternal life. Our celebrating of these events are not about simply emoting through a story, but to connect all of these stories to the greater story of hope. We come together to remind ourselves that our part of the story is not the whole thing, there is something greater – greater and more wonderful. All of our sacraments keep lifting us into that unity of hope in the greater story which is as unchanging as the façade of the church building itself. Her doors open to those crying and lost and to those laughing and praising alike. The façade does not change because the message does not change. Here is hope. Here is the connection to the greater story of which you are an important part. Here you come not to act out your story, but to live it more fully, more truly, with greater significance, with community, with God, with hope.