My great-great-grandmother feeds a donkey with a large glass bottle in a photograph. She stands in front of a fence, a breeze from behind billowing her long, dark dress. Her round face smiles under her tidy top knot bun, and I see my grandfather in many of her features.
Before he passed, looking at the picture made me smile with a mixture of pride and amusement. But now that he’s gone, the picture makes me cry. I still feel pride and amusement, but her brow and cheeks, so similar to his, reawaken my grief for my grandpa. He would tell me stories of growing up on a farm during the Great Depression and World War II, sharing names and tales of hard work and funny incidents. He would have been able to explain just what exactly his grandmother was doing with that donkey.
When Saint Paul stands in the synagogue and recounts the family history of the Israelites, I understand what he’s doing: he’s keeping alive the narrative of who they are and where they fit in the story that God is writing.
When we know who and where we are from we can better receive the next chapter, whatever it may be.
Saint Paul announces to those in the synagogue the next chapter in their story when he declares, “God, according to His promise, has brought to Israel a savior, Jesus” (Acts 13:23).
God has brought to all of us a savior, Jesus. I am the descendent of farmers and immigrants, hard workers and Rosary-praying Catholics. I am also part of the Lord’s family, loved and redeemed by our Almighty God. And so are you, sister, so are you.
If there are parts of your family’s history that need healing or salvation, offer that up to the Lord right now. Let our Savior Jesus remind you of your place in His story.
Jesus, let me be all Yours.
Thank you for being here.
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