December 1, 2021
Our time on pilgrimage has been filled with many blessings. Today we had the opportunity to visit and tour the Old City in Jerusalem. Here we found an invitation to immerse ourselves in the history and traditions that have shaped the very city and people that have lived here throughout the centuries. It was a journey through time to understand how the city came to be built up and the importance the different sites within the city have been to many communities of faith. The combination of archeological findings and faith traditions brought alive the scriptures and the final moments of Jesus.
The experience that best exemplifies this encounter is the Via Dolorasa, a way to pray the Stations of the Cross through the Old City. Its’ path winds through the city and brings you face to face with the passion of Jesus Christ. As we walked the steps of Jesus up to Golgotha, the call to trust in God resounded in my heart. It came to me especially when reflecting on the falls Jesus had on His way to His crucifixion. Even though Jesus stumbled, He continued to press forward. In taking up one’s cross and following Jesus, we can learn to trust in our Lord, with the assurance that He will lead me to where I need to go. The assurance He gives me is born of the love He has for me and for all of us. It brings me to the joy of His resurrection and the new life He wants me to live in Him. In a special way the empty tomb is the mark of these promises and my delight as I continue to follow Jesus and carry my own cross.
I pray we may continue to immerse ourselves in this love, so that we may draw closer to Jesus who is our truth and our life.
Archdiocese of Chicago