The paralyzed man is healed, body and soul, because his friends were an unstoppable force of getting this guy to Jesus. He can’t walk there? No problem. They get a stretcher.
Then the crowds are so dense that they can’t get him anywhere near Jesus. Do they give up? Decide to try again next time? Not them. These guys climb onto the roof, drag their paralyzed friend up, proceed to dismantle the roof, like you do, and lower the guy into the presence of Jesus. What an extraordinary love these friends must have had for each other (Luke 5:18-19).
Amazingly, though, I know two different people who have kind of a similar story. Both were immediately converted from nothingness to Catholicism—which I think we can agree is its own form of miraculous healing—by being brought to Mass by a friend.
My daughter’s godfather was invited to midnight Mass by his Catholic roommate. He left that Mass in the wee hours of Christmas morning convinced of the Truth of Christianity, and is now a Benedictine monk.
Another friend was a young gal working at a family-owned ice cream parlor. The mom of the family offered to give her a ride home, if she didn’t mind stopping at a daily Mass on the way. She went, and knew by the end of Mass that she wanted to be Catholic. She converted, married a Catholic fella, and now has eight kids.
The roommate and the ice cream mom were just as daring as those rooftop stretcher-bearers. It takes a unique kind of courage to invite a friend to Mass. After all, there are plenty of things that might go wrong. Maybe she’ll say no. Maybe she’ll say no and laugh in your face. Maybe she’ll say yes, but hate it. Maybe she’ll want to go, but the Mass is really crowded and you’ll have to lower her down through the roof. Those are all possibilities (although, admittedly, the roof one seems pretty remote).
But another possibility is that she will say yes, and Jesus will work a miracle in her, and YOU will get to be part of that.
Did you see this blog post from last year on books for converts? It's such a helpful list!
Kendra Tierney is a forty-two year old mother of nine and wife of one living in and working on a big old fixer-upper house in Los Angeles. She's a homeschooler and a regular schooler and is relishing the new freedom from carpooling that's come with a sixteen-year-old in the house. Her new book, The Catholic All Year Compendium, Liturgical Living for Real Life, is here. You can find her first book, A Little Book About Confession, here, her blog here, and her word art here.