I walked into the first day of religion class at my Catholic high school. My eyes fell on the bulletin board at the back of the room. In bold, big letters I read the words of John Paul II: “It is Jesus, in fact, that you seek when you dream of happiness. . . . It is Jesus who stirs in you the desire to do something great with your lives” (Vigil, World Youth Day, August 2000).
Those words pierced me to my depths and spoke to that part of my young heart that wanted more, that longed for greatness. Something caught fire in me—a conviction deep in my soul that I had not known before. That day, I became a daughter of John Paul II, although I had no idea at the time what sort of transformation and re-formation that would require.
As a good father and shepherd feeds his sheep (John 21:17), so Pope Saint John Paul II followed me throughout my life, fed me with truth, and kept bringing me back to Jesus. He remained with me spiritually through all of the years of searching, wounding, breaking, and ultimately, healing. He continues to remain a close father and friend from Heaven. I believe he wants to be the same for you.
On this, his feast day, dear sister, I invite you to ask Pope Saint John Paul II to be a father to you, to let him feed you and shepherd you to Jesus, to a deeper understanding of yourself and your call to true holiness. May he teach you to bring everything to Christ, in Whom you will discover your true identity. This will lead you to “adoration of God but also a deep wonder” at yourself (Redemptor Hominis, 10).
It is there, in this place of encounter with the living God, where you will be transformed. You will look and see, directly before your eyes, “the Lord restoring Zion” (Isaiah 52:8).
Lord of my life, give meaning to my sufferings, reveal to me my identity, and help me to see, right in front of me, how You are restoring and redeeming everything.Bring everything to Christ. // Rocio Hermes Click To Tweet
Thank you for being here.
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