My eyes darted between the descending steps and the sweeping sunset as I skipped toward the bus and away from the archbasilica. An exhale forced a surrendered smile as I tried to file away every beautiful, glorious detail of Saint John Lateran Archbasilica in Rome whose dedication we celebrate today.
The interior of the building itself was overwhelming, but what I really wanted to commit to memory was the fact that it is my home parish. It's yours, too. Saint John Lateran houses the cathedra, or seat, of the Roman bishop, who is also the Holy Father and shepherd of the entire Catholic Church. This amazing archbasilica, then, is every Catholic's home parish, no matter where we actually call home.
And while it may seem odd to have a feast day dedicated to the dedication of a building, like most things in Catholicism, the roots spread deeper. In today's Second Reading of 1 Corinthians 3:10, Saint Paul reminds us that the foundation of everything is Jesus Christ. As Christians, whatever we build—be it a ministry or family or business or building—ought to be wrought on the foundation of God and His Church. He is the sturdy cornerstone. And it's from the foundation of His Heart that living water flows and gives life (see First Reading).
Saint John Lateran stands as a reminder to all the faithful that we are one Church built on the foundation of Jesus Christ. From across the globe, we are united because He is the One Shelter. And He is the One Who produces fruit and raises up (see John 2:19).
What are you building with your life right now, grand or hardly noticed? Take inspiration from the feast of your home parish in Rome: build it upon Christ. Let Him be the Designer and the Craftsman.