“Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”

The opener to this week’s Gospel is great: “some Greeks” come to Andrew and say, “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.” It is a powerful verse, simple and yet so full of complexities, that it is also engraved on a brass plate on the inside of our pulpit at Saint Miriam. Why? Because we want to remind every priest that lifts himself up to the pulpit’s riser, that the people wish to be lifted, too. In other words, they came because they want to see Jesus. Anyway, the more interesting stuff in the text is before and after that little nugget. Whenever I read the story, I think of how it shows how Jesus’ ministry spread beyond the borders of Israel. Like when the Magi from the East sought the infant in Bethlehem, somehow the Spirit had nudged these Greeks to seek Jesus. Maybe once they got to Jerusalem they heard about Jesus and all he’d been doing. They ask to see him. That’s still the Spirit at work. It is that movement of the gospel, and the Spirit out into the world, that brought me, and probably you, into our faith, that’s a great little moment and not one to be merely glided over by our passing such a verse. 

Today’s Christians and leaders would do well to keep in mind. The people who come to us, they simply want to see Jesus. They don’t want a theological discourse; they don’t care about your polity or its structure, or how high your hat is, or how lofty your degrees and titles. No, what they want is so simple to give: “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”

After all, in the end, you and I are on the same journey of transformation into Christ’s image. So, stop making hay out of the hierocracy of the church. No one cares. Instead, by one way or another, just show them Jesus. That’s a better invitation to the Kingdom than an argument or a well-rehearsed spiel. It is the way of the gospel and it is the manner in which we built Saint Miriam!

Monsignor +Jim 

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