Tag Archives: lectionary

Conflict in the community

This Sunday’s Gospel comes from chapter 18 of the Gospel according to Matthew, a chapter which pulls together some of Jesus’ words about the community, the church.

The final verse of Sunday’s Gospel, Matthew 18: 20, tries to make it clear that the church is not just a grouping of persons, but the Body of Christ, where Christ is present: “where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there in their midst.”

As a community, we are called to live in communion and mutual love, as Paul wrote to the Romans 13:8: “Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.”

But we know that this is often not the case and so Jesus leaves us a process of becoming a community in the midst of sin and division.

Jesus offers us four steps. In many ways, they seem all too reasonable. But we often don’t do what Jesus calls us to do.

A few months ago, I read John Paul Lederach’s Journey Toward Reconciliation. Lederach has worked in reconciliation and peacemaking in many parts of the world, particularly in Latin America. His work has influenced the work of Caritas International in its peacemaking efforts, in particular its manuals for Conflict Transformation. Lederach is a Mennonite and has taught at Eastern Mennonite University and the University of Notre Dame. In chapter 3 of Journey toward Reconciliation, he provides a practical exegesis of this Sunday’s Gospel. This has influenced me in what I will preach tomorrow – first of all in a community that just experienced a brutal killing, but which is a community with many divisions.

Jesus proposes four steps:

Step 1: Going Directly
Step 2: Taking One or Two Witnesses Along
Step 3: Telling It to the Church
Step 4: Relating as with a Gentile and Tax Collector

First, if someone has sinned against you, go directly to the person, alone. Don’t talk about the conflict behind the person’s back. Don’t air the dirty laundry in public. Go directly to the person – not seeking to win, nor to extract an apology, nor to justify oneself. Go to bring the person back into the community. Lederach suggests that this requires “prayerful vulnerability,” “responsible discernment,” and “interactive engagement.” We don’t go as one who has the answers, as the person who is in the right, but looking carefully at myself and the problem in a humble and open way.

In the bombed shell of Coventry Cathedral

I know that it is easier to castigate the “sinner” than to go and speak directly to him. This happens in communities here where it is very hard to speak directly about conflicts and so gossip abounds. I would also suggest that this is what is happening in the Catholic Church in many parts of the world. “Fraternal correction” in private has been replaced by accusations.

But Jesus says go directly – to gain one’s brother or sister.

Secondly, if that doesn’t work, take one or two witnesses. They might help keep the discussion focused and be able to pint out where we are defensive or offensive, where we are not listening. They may even be able to help us point out places of agreement that we and our opponent don’t see. In addition, I believe that the presence of witnesses can say to the person that we are concerned about her or him and want to be in communion.

But, if that doesn’t work, bring in the community. The Greek uses the word ekklesia, most often translated as church. This is one of the few places where this word is used in the Gospels. But the Church must be one that is working for community, that knows who it is, that knows its weaknesses and its strengths, that is honest and transparent in its workings.

Finally, what do we do when nothing seems to work?

Jesus’s words have often been mistranslated or misinterpreted. The Greek reads: ἔστω σοι ὥσπερ ὁ ἐθνικὸς καὶ ὁ τελώνης. This literally means, “Let him be to you as the pagan and the tax collector.”

Sometimes this has been interpreted as saying that we should shun the person, turn away from her or him. But Lederach opens up an interpretation that I believe is more faithful to the call of Jesus.

How does Jesus treat the pagan and the tax collector?

In the Gospels, Jesus heals the servant of the Roman centurion and the daughter of the Syro- phoenician woman. That is far from shunning, though the encounter of Jesus with the woman suggests that his culture preferred to refrain from dealing with pagans.

In the Gospels, Jesus invites himself to dinner with the tax collectors. Note the stories of the call of Matthew and the encounter in Jericho with Zaccheus. Jesus wants to eat with them.

Jesus shows us the creative imagination of God.

Eating is a way of connecting with another, putting oneself at the same level as the other person. It is a place where we can be vulnerable and can interaction with others, even though we don’t agree. It is not a surefire way of reconciling, but it can open up a place.

In all this, we need to remember that what Jesus wants is communion, community, solidarity, mutual love. There will be conflicts, but can we still love the other? Can we seek out creative ways to foster reconciliation and justice? Lederach’s question is critical: “How do we make the church community a place where this mission of encounter, growth, and reconciliation can take place?”

This is not easy, but I believe it is what Jesus wants, what Jesus calls us to be.

I’ll close with an extended quote of John Paul Lederach:

“The entire purpose of working through conflict is aimed at bringing back together what has been torn apart through earlier actions, behaviors, and responses. The primary goal is reconciliation, understood as relationship ship and restoration, the healing of personal and social fabrics. In this process, it is impossible to separate personal from social healing. Clearly, these are like steps in a journey. It begins with a personal journey within, for the purpose of identifying the source of pain, what is wrong, and understanding it. The process then moves us toward the source of our anxiety and pain that is welling up in the relationship. What rises from this journey is commitment to relationship and interdependence.”

Solitude, caves, and a fiery furnace

One of my favorite places in Assisi is the Carceri, a site of caves above Assisi where Francis and some of his early companions went for periods of silent prayer.

Steps down to the cave of Fra Masseo

Steps down to the cave of Fra Masseo

When I visited in February 2013, I found, by providence, the cave of Brother Masseo. I walked down the icy steps and found myself praying. As I moved deeper into the cave, I had a strong sense of the presence of God. It was, for me, one of those thin places where heaven and earth touch in a very special, even tangible way. I stayed there and prayed.



In October 2018 I had another chance to visit the Carceri, after the Mass of the canonization of Monseñor Romero in Rome.

I easily found Brother Masseo’s cave and intended to read the scripture of the day and pray there. I found a stone on which I sat. I prayed – and fell asleep for a bit. The time passed and I had spent much more time there than I had planned.


Again, I had found the thin place.


Now, in forced isolation – curfew – I am finding it hard to stay in one place and even harder to be centered in the middle of all this.

So I decided to read again Thomas Merton’s Wisdom of the Desert. Providentially I found this quote:

“An elder said: The monk’s cell is that furnace of Babylon in which the three children found the Son of God; but it is also the pillar of cloud, out of which God spoke to Moses.”

Today’s first lectionary reading is the story of the three young men thrown into the fiery furnace in n Daniel 2.


What struck me while praying it this morning is how they had such trust in God, not knowing the outcome of what they might suffer as a result of their faithfulness.

“If our God, whom we serve, can save us from the white-hot furnace and from your hands, O king, may he save us! But even if he will not, know, O king, that we will not serve your god or worship the golden statue that you set up.”

And so, in the fiery furnace, they found themselves accompanied by a fourth person, as the king noted:

“I see four men unfettered and unhurt, walking in the fire, and the fourth looks like a son of God.”

Can we so trust in God that we can recognize him accompanying us in this time of loneliness and trial?


Photo  by Lawrence OP of a sarcophagus in the Vatican Museums, found at https://www.flickr.com/photos/paullew/5615204881.


A missing verse in the Christmas lectionary

The first reading from Isaiah for the Christmas midnight Mass (9:1-6) has consoled me for many years. It includes this promise of the end of repression and war against the people:

For the yoke that burdened them,
the pole on their shoulder,
and the rod of their taskmaster
you have smashed…
For every boot that tramped in battle,
every cloak rolled in blood,
will be burned as fuel for flames.

I especially remember one year, perhaps it was in 1989 after the massacre of the Jesuits at the Central American University. As I heard these words, I began to cry, thinking of the many deaths wreaked on the people of El Salvador (and many other lands) by an oppressive military, funded by the United States.

As I prepared this morning to preach at Mass tonight in Dulce Nombre, I read the lectionary in English and in Spanish. I plan to read the first reading and the Gospel in several different translations in English and Spanish (and look at the Gospel in Greek) to try to capture the details.

I am rather upset, though, to find that the fourth verse of the reading from Isaiah is omitted in the Spanish lectionary and that people in Latin America may not hear the verse that prophesies the destruction of military boots and bloody cloaks.

The verses may refer to not taking booty in a holy war, but I hear them more as a promise that violence and war do not have the final word.

In a continent ravished by violence, in a country with a high index of murder, I want to hear this promise. I want to share this promise that the newborn Prince of Peace brings. I want to say to those who have seen their neighbors slain – by gangs in the big cities, in vengeance killings throughout the countryside, by government and death squads – that God’s vision is different, that God is Peace, who comes as a poor baby, born in a manger, visited by shepherds, outcasts of their time.

Maybe I’ll just have to include this verse in my homily – announcing the Prince of Peace.


The Upside-Down World of St. Francis

Today, we’ll celebrate the feast of Saint Francis.


This morning I’m going to the village of Delicias, Concepción, to celebrate their feast day. They are planning a procession (despite the rain) followed by Mass.

After Mass, I plan to rush off to La Entrada to celebrate the feast with lunch with the Dubuque Franciscan Sisters here in Honduras. (Yesterday I spent the afternoon cleaning the kitchen and baking bread.)

I don’t know if Padre German will have me preach in Delicias, though he has two other Masses today. But I’ve something prepared.

There is a passage in G. K. Chesterton’s Saint Francis of Assisi that inspires my thoughts this morning.

If a man saw the world upside down, with all the trees and towers hanging head downwards as in a pool, one effect would be to emphasize the idea of dependence. There is a Latin and literal connection; for the very word dependence only means hanging. It would make vivid the Scriptural text which says that God has hanged the world upon nothing. If St. Francis saw in one of his strange dreams, the town of Assisi upside down, it need not have differed in a single detail from itself except in being entirely the other way round. But the point is this: that whereas to the normal eye the large masonry of its walls or the massive foundations of its watchtowers and its high citadel would make it seem safer and more permanent, the moment it was turned over the very same weight would make it seem more helpless and more in peril. It is but a symbol; but it happens to fit the psychological fact. St. Francis might love his little town as much as before, or more than before; but the nature of the love would be altered even in being increased. He might see and love every tile on the steep roofs or every bird on the battlements; but he would see them all in a new and divine light of eternal danger and dependence. Instead of being merely proud of his strong city because it could not be moved, he would be thankful to God Almighty that it had not been dropped; he would be thankful to God for not dropping the whole cosmos like a vast crystal to be shattered into falling stars. Perhaps St. Peter saw the world so, when he was crucified head-downwards.

I had thought of beginning to preach standing on my head – but I am not sure if I can do that well.

But Francis turned the world upside down.

The Gospel in the Franciscan lectionary is Matthew 11: 25-30: “The Father has hidden these things from the learned and revealed them to the simple.”

In a world that values degrees and learning, what is more contrary than to affirm that the poor have a privilege in understanding the revelation of God. How much more important that is here in Honduras where the rich and the powerful look down on the poor.

Francis opens up for the radical simplicity of the Gospel by interpreting the Gospel through the lens of the poor Christ, laying aside the notions of an imperial and dominating god.

The reading from Galatians 6: 14-18 is chosen because Francis bore “the marks of Jesus on his body.” He lived with the sufferings of Christ before his eyes and was marked by the stigmata for two years before his death. But what is more counter-cultural than to desire to share in the sufferings of others and to accompany those who are in need. So was Christ and so was Francis.

The first reading, Ecclesiastes 50: 1-3, 7, refers to the one who repairs the temple of the Lord and propped up the sanctuary. When Francis heard the Lord speaking to him from the cross in San Damiano, “Go, repair my church,” he took it literally and began to rebuild the church. (He also rebuilt several others.) A man of leisure, used to the good life, works with his hands.

Francis became poor for the sake of Christ; he worked as the poor worked; he gave up power and position.

He truly saw the world upside-down – suspended from the Crucified Lord.

The photo, courtesy of Terry McElrath, is from the entrance to the church at what was St. Joseph Seraphic Seminary, Callicoon, NY, where I spent high school and two years of college.

Other posts on Francis:
Francis and encountering Jesus in silence
Francis and Gandhi: peace and nonviolence
Francis and repairing the church
Francis and the leper
Saint Francis and poverty
Saint Francis: gratefully loving the world
 Saint Francis: performing the Gospel
Saint Francis and the challenge of nonviolence
Saint Francis and the evangelization of love



The healing power of Christ – the Eucharist

Taking communion to the sick and elderly is part of my ministry as a deacon, serving those at the margins of our world.

In the past three months I have taken communion to three persons who died shortly after my visit. I was also able to participate in their funeral. It is a great privilege to share the Eucharist with the dying a Viaticum, food for the journey.

But there was another visit which reveals to me the healing power of the Eucharist. I visited in April but I learned of this yesterday while taking Communion to the sick in San Agustín. There I encountered a young woman,  a catechist from a remote village of the parish.

She told me that her mother, who has been suffering severely for years from complications from an operation, has been able to get around and even get to church since the day when I brought Communion in April.

The older woman and her husband live far from the center of the village and you have to walk at least part of the way.

I had visited the couple twice before, in 2016. The first time was on Good Friday and they arranged my transport to their home on a horse. The second time was the day after I was ordained deacon. Both times I was accompanied by their son, Juan Ángel, a delegate of the Word in the village who was also preparing to be an extraordinary minister of Communion. He died a few months after my visit.

This April, after a Sunday Celebration of the Word with Communion, I went to visit them again. This time I could take my car part of the way but we had to walk about 20 minutes uphill.


I arrived and we talked for several minutes. I mentioned that I had the Eucharist with me if she wanted to receive Communion. She seemed hesitant. She told me she had not gone to confession for some time – because she couldn’t walk the 45 minutes or more to the church and the priest had not had the opportunity to visit her at home. Here, in Honduras, there is often the belief that you must confess before receiving communion.

So she had had no opportunity to go to confession for years. I mentioned to her that what should stop us from receiving Communion is when one has committed a mortal sin and not confessed it. I, in questions which were both serious and a bit playful, to consider if she had committed a mortal sin. Had she killed someone? Had she slept with someone other than her husband? Had she denied God?

I wasn’t expecting her to answer me – they were rhetorical questions. But she said that every morning she prays and asks God’s forgiveness.

Such faith.

I then told her that we would go forward with the prayers and, when it was time for communion, she could decide.

We prayed and, when it was time for communion, she received the Body of Christ.

I left with a deep sense of her faith and of the way that Christ has been present for her – and for me.

When I heard yesterday from her daughter that she was getting better and could get up and even get to the church for celebrations, I was amazed and grateful. Receiving the Lord in Communion gave her the grace to get up, gave her the strength to move out from her house, gave he the healing to reincorporate herself in the life of the community, especially the church.

What is tomorrow’s Gospel? The healing of the woman with a hemorrhage, twelve years suffering but trusting in the power of Jesus, if she could only touch Him.

Jesús touched Doña Reina and she got up. How the Gospel fits her experience. I hope she can recognize that tomorrow.

The Eucharist, the Body of Christ,  heals and reincorporates us into the Body of Christ, the People of God, the Church.

The Lord has been good to us. We are very glad.

The resiliency of the Reign of God

DSC08133I have a small tree in a pot on my terrace. It was large at one point, but nearly withered. Then it grew back, but something happened  a few weeks ago and the whole top of the small tree broke off. I thought it was dead, but I left in out and even watered it when there was no rain.

The tree is growing back.

While preparing for preaching this weekend I ran across the last verse of the first reading, Ezekiel 17:24:

[I, the Lord,] make the withered tree bloom.

But I first read it in a Spanish version:

…reverdezco el árbol seco.

Loosely translated,

“I make the dry tree green again.”

There is so much going on to dry out our souls these days – not only the news about separating families of immigrants in the US, the deaths of so many from violence and poverty, the war on the poor that is happening in so many places in the world. How many are feeling dried and drained by worries about their children, by trying to make ends meet, by so many squelched dreams? And then there is the personal dryness – Where is God? Why do I feel so helpless about all this? Is there anything one person can do?

In the midst of this, God promises to make the dry tree green again, to refresh our thirst-plagued spirits.

And we are reminded by the parables that God works through little things, like grains of mustard.

As Pope Francis writes in Gaudete et Exsultate (16), “This holiness to which the Lord calls you will grow through small gestures.”

And we can remember the wise advice of Dorothy Day:

“Young people say, ‘What can one person do? What is the sense of our small effort?’ They cannot see that we can only lay one brick at a time, take one step at a time; we can be responsible only for the one action of the present moment. But we can beg for an increase of love in our hearts that will vitalize and transform these actions, and know that God will take them and multiply them, as Jesus multiplied the loaves and fishes.”

I remember especially these words from prison of Blessed Franz Jägerstätter, an Austrian peasant martyred in 1943 for his refusal to serve in Hitler’s army.  cThey can both challenge and sustain us, to be resilient workers in the Reign of God:

“Today one hears it said repeatedly that there is nothing any more that an individual can do. If someone were to speak out, it would mean only imprisonment and death. True, there is not much that can be done anymore to change the course of world events. I believe that should have begun a hundred or even more years ago. But as long as we live in this world, I believe it is never too late to save ourselves and perhaps some other soul for Christ. One really has no cause to be astonished that there are those who can no longer find their way in the great confusion of our day. People we think we can trust, who ought to be leading the way and setting a good example, are running along with the crowd. No one gives enlightenment, whether in word or in writing. Or, to be more exact, it may not be given. And the thoughtless race goes on, always closer to eternity. As long as conditions are still half good, we don’t see things quite right, or that we could or should do otherwise….
“If the road signs were stuck ever so loosely in the earth that every wind could break them off or blow them about, would anyone who did not know the road be able to find his way? And how much worse is it if those to whom one turns for information refuse to give him an answer or, at most, give him the wrong direction just to be rid of him as quickly as possible?”

Jesus, Eichmann, and sanity

“He is out of his mind.”
Mark 3: 21

Jesus was healing the sick, touching lepers, listening to the outcasts, challenging the rigidity of religious leaders. He was on the margins. And so his family was worried about him and wanted to take him home and drive some sense into him. “He is out of his mind.” He’s really out of it. He’s nuts.

As I meditated on this reading this week, preparing to preach this Sunday, I recalled an extraordinary essay of Thomas Merton, “A Devout Meditation in Memory of Adolf Eichmann,” found in Raids on the Unspeakable.

Merton was deeply moved by Hannah Arendt’s reports on the trial of Adolf Eichmann, a mastermind of the Holocaust and the deportation of Jews to Auschwitz and other death camps. Originally appearing in The New Yorker, Arendt’s reports are found in Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil.

But what most struck Merton was the apparent sanity of Eichmann. He was no psychotic, but was adjudged perfectly sane by a psychiatrist who examined him.

Yet Jesus’ relatives thought just had lost his mind.

Merton’s remarks are relevant – not just for Eichmann and Jesus, but also for us today.

I am beginning to realize that “sanity” is no longer a value or an end in itself. The “sanity” of modern man is about as useful to him as the huge bulk and muscles of the dinosaur. If he were a little less sane, a little more doubtful, a little more aware of his absurdities and contradictions, perhaps there might be a possibility of his survival. But if he is sane, too sane … perhaps we must say that in a society like ours the worst insanity is to be totally without anxiety, totally “sane.”

Are we sane like Eichmann or out of our minds like Jesus?




Despising the manual worker

“Isn’t this guy the carpenter’s son?”
Matthew 13: 55

All too often the world looks down on manual work and on those who work in our fields and factories, those who clean our buildings or service our cars. White collar work, intellectual work, and business savvy are valued more than the sweat of those who clean our schools and hospitals or grow and harvest our food.


St. Joseph, by Ade Bethune

Even Jesus experienced this dismissal of the value of manual work. They tried to dismiss him and his wisdom since he is only “the carpenter’s son.”

Yet today, as the world celebrates the Day of the Worker, a national holiday here in Honduras and other countries, the Church celebrates Saint Joseph the Worker.

I see this around me here in Honduras. Shortly after I got here I read the president of the National Congress referring to the people who work in the countryside in our part of the country as “gente del monte,” which (because of the ambiguity of the word monte as either hill or weed) can be translated as “hillbillies” or “hayseed.”

But this is not only here. I remember how the university students who came from the farm or were studying agriculture seemed to be seen as less important than those studying engineering who came from a big city. And this was at a land-grant university.

But it was only a few years ago when I realized why I am so sensitive to this. My parents were blue collar workers. Though my dad eventually worked in the office, he began working on the floor of a steel fabrication plant. My mom had several jobs in offices but also spent several years working in a supermarket distribution center, candling eggs and going through fruit and vegetables.

There is a dignity in manual work that it is so easy to ignore. There is also a tendency to over-value intellectual work, to esteem thinking over doing.

Thus it is interesting that today is also the anniversary of the death of Thomas A Kempis who wrote in The Imitation of Christ:

“A humble countryman who serves God is more pleasing to Him than a conceited intellectual who knows the course of the stars, but neglects his own soul.”

Today is also the anniversary of the initiation of the Catholic Worker, distributed at the May Day rally in 1933.

Today I also recall the death of Monsignor George Higgins, a strong advocate of the worker and of unions, in 2002, and the death on the same day of Ade Bethune, the artist whose work has appeared prominently in The Catholic Worker for decades.

It is good that today we honor Saint Joseph the Worker by honoring all those who work, especially those who work with their hands. Where would we be without them?


The Good Shepherd – two perspectives

I have two homilies in me on this Sunday’s readings. I don’t know which one I’ll share, though I might end up sharing both, since I’ll probably be preaching in two different celebrations – in a Celebration of the Word in a remote village and at a Mass in one of the municipalities in the parish.


The first perspective on  Jesus as the Good Shepherd that I want to share is of a shepherd who encourages and consoles us.

Jesus care for us, the sheep. He knows us – with all our faults and all our gifts. He wants the best for us. John in the second reading reminds us that “Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed.”

Jesus seeks us out. Knowing us, as sometimes lost and wandering, he has come from the Father to seek us out. He finds us even in the brambles and carries us back to the flock. If he carries us on his shoulders, it’s quite likely that our bowels will be loosened in fright and we’ll crap down his back. But he loves us with all our crap – and wants to carry us back to the security of the flock.

Jesus also guards and protects us. When we are with Him, we may face dangers – but He is there at our side.

But he loves us so much that He willingly gives us life for us. Yes, it is dangerous and fearful. He did sweat blood in the Garden of Gethsemane. But He knows that giving up oneself brings life.

Jesus, God-made-flesh, is the Good Shepherd who is for us.

But the second perspective is one that challenges us who serve the People of God, God’s flock.

Are we like the Good Shepherd?

Do we know our sheep, as Jesus knows His sheep? Do we have the smell of sheep from getting down into the mud with them?

Do we seek out the lost sheep, instead of being content with the faithful few? Do we go out into the brambles and offer the lost a way out, a way of hope? Or, do we want a comfortable church?

Are we willing to pick up the sheep and carry them home with tenderness? They’ll be dirty and smelling – and may crap on us.

Finally, are we willing to give our lives for them? This may mean martyrdom – which is a gift that God gives to a few. But then there is the dying that happens every day when people serve others in love, go the extra mile to comfort someone, forgive even their enemies?

Are we like the Good Shepherd or are we hired hands, who are content with our little rituals and minimal duties?

But, don’t worry. Even if we are mere hired hands, the Good Shepherd seeks us out and, with love, brings us back and offers us another chance to love.

The image is taken from the web page of Mount Saviour Monastery, a close up of the statue in their cemetery.

Give Thomas a break

Preparing to preach today, I was struck by how narrow our vision is when we consider “doubting Thomas.” I said in my homily that we are too hard on him.

He wasn’t in the Upper Room (with its locked doors for fear of the authorities) when Jesus appeared. The apostles there were startled and terrified (as Luke 24:37 puts it).

Jesus shows them his wounds and they are filled with joy, at least in John’s Gospel (20:21). In Luke they are incredulous for joy and amazed (24:41) or, as the NRSV puts it, “in their joy they were disbelieving and still wondering.”

Eating with him, they seem to be convinced that it is really Jesus, risen, and not a phantasm.

When Thomas heard the news, I wondered if he thought the other apostles were suffering from an illusion, projecting their dreams to visualize a risen Jesus.

Perhaps Thomas was seeking a real encounter with Jesus and was suspicious of their stories. After all, these same disciples had been told of the risen Jesus by the women who had the courage to go to the tomb that Sunday morning. But they seem to have dismissed the women and doubted them. They were the doubting disciples – of course, the women had brought the message and, in a macho world, who listens to women?

But when Jesus comes to the disciples the next Sunday, he doesn’t chew him out. Rather, he invites Thomas to come and put his finger in the wounds. He invites intimate contact.

And how does Thomas respond? With one of the most profound affirmations of Jesus in the Gospels, “My Lord and my God.”

Thomas gets a bad rep – while the other disciples get excused for their doubts. But Thomas opened himself to intimacy, to touching the wounds of the Lord.

Do we long to touch the wounds of the Lord? Or do we want to keep Him at a distance?


Caravaggio, Michelangelo Merisi da, 1573-1610. The Incredulity of Saint Thomas.[retrieved April 8, 2018] Original source: Wikipedia Commons.