This past October, Father Chester Smith, SVD, asked everyone at the Revival what time was it and everyone would yell out, "It's prime time!" As I recall the excitement of the pope's visit, his homilies, his messages through words and actions our response to this should be, "Prime Time!" What does it mean? I believe it's when we cannot let the excitement and joy of his message die. We have to not only bring the good news of Christ to others, but also we must do it through our actions of love, hope and charity.
I was honored with the opportunity to go to Philadelphia and Washington for the pope's visit. What excitement! What love! The sacrifices people made to see the vicar of Christ here on earth were awesome. The pope is incredibly loving. Everyone that is in his presence can feel it. The silence in anticipation of what Pope Francis' message would be to Congress and for us was unbelievable. I was standing with thousands of people and in complete silence as we anticipated his entrance. His message was so beautifully shared with us with the love and humility as he spoke about four of the great Americans, Abraham Lincoln, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton to help get his message across of peace, liberty and justice for all.
Although he was speaking to the politicians, a lot of what he said is a message for all of us. One of the main things that stuck out for me was the golden rule, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" (Mt. 7:12). I know it seems so easy and yet it is one of the hardest rules to follow. So many are being treated unjustly.
A lot of what Father Smith said at the Revival was on the theme of "Cast the First Stone," the treatment that others give us and how it sometimes bring us down and makes us not like ourselves. He said sometimes that snakes cause us to die but we have to remember that God makes us beautiful and that we are special. That as children of God we have the power to overcome anything that is thrown at us by others. He also challenged us as people who may be stone throwers. He challenges us to be different as Christians.
On the popes' address to the bishops, clergy and religious in Pennsylvania, he said, "Most of you know the story of St. Katharine Drexel, one of the great saints raised up by this local Church.
When she spoke to Pope Leo XIII of the needs of the missions, the pope - he was a very wise pope - asked her pointedly: "What about you? What are you going to do?" Those words changed Katharine's life, because they reminded her that, in the end, every Christian man and woman, by virtue of baptism, has received a mission. Each one of us has to respond, as best we can, to the Lord's call to build up his Body, the Church."
So what about you, what are you going to do? With those in poverty, people begging, those seeking asylum, homeless, those being bullied, the depressed, the lonely, the prisoners, the mentally ill, the sick. Are you ready to show a different kind of love, the kind of love that Jesus taught us? Are you ready to be more humble? Are you ready to be show more patience toward others? Are you ready to listen to God and to the right messages? Are you ready to believe that you have the power to change things? It's Prime Time!