Holy Land Pilgrimage

Seek My Face

February 9, 2022

“Seek My Face.”

These are the words that I have been praying with during my time here in the Holy Land. In preparing for my diaconate ordination, a fruit of my prayer has been the call to fall deeper in love with Jesus Christ, and to seek His face throughout this trip as I inch closer towards that day.

The advice given to me and my classmates for the trip was to be flexible. Oftentimes, we did not get to know what was going to happen, or where we were going to go until a day or two before. We entrust our lives to those who planned out this trip and because of that, it gives us the opportunity to humble ourselves and be reminded of the reality that we are not always in control.

I did not go into this Holy Land trip thinking that I would be able to be a shepherd for the day and carry some sheep, or even get to ride a camel in the city of Jericho. I did not think I would be able to walk the streets of Bethlehem. More importantly, I never imagined I would have the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of Jesus Christ. I got to see where He was born in Bethlehem. I saw where His childhood home would have been. My brothers and I even got to see the synagogue where He first preached. None of this could have been possible if I did not say yes and place my faith in God and my vocation.

Coming to the Holy Land was not something I envisioned when I said yes to becoming a seminarian for the Diocese of Las Vegas. Yet even though I am here in the Holy Land, I can’t help but think about my home, the place where I will be able to give the rest of my life. I see the faces of the many men and women that have supported me the past five years in my seminary journey. Any emotions of fear or reservation I have, I am quickly reminded about the people that I will have the privilege of serving. The many faces that have walked alongside me during my discernment, and even now as I walk even closer towards priesthood. These faces remind me of the saving power of Jesus Christ. I am excited to continue this pilgrimage through the Holy Land. Please keep me and my brother seminarians in your prayers, and please know that I pray for you all as well.

AJ Sales
Diocese of Las Vegas

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