This week I listened to a podcast that caught my ear and put a smile on my face. It was Jeff Cavins, a Scripture Scholar who often leads pilgrimages to the Holy Land. The podcast was called “Scoot down the pew please?” In short, it led me to preach a daily Mass homily on sitting in the pew.
We all love our seats. Creatures of Habit, lovers of ritual, comfort in stability. Lots of good reasons. Folks arrive early to get the end seats on pews. And woe to the usher who has to say, “Scoot down the pew please.” As Jeff tells the story, he builds up the very human moment of eye contact and frustration and annoyance that can come with such a simple request.
But the paradigm shifts when a young mother, with child in carseat and 3 year old approaches and says, “Can we join you?” That gracious request changed the moment entirely. He and his wife moved into the middle of the pew and made room for someone did join them.
The question really is, “Can we join you Jesus?” And isn’t that the point? Jesus is inviting us all to be His family.
Join His family.
Join His church.
Join Him at the wedding feast of the lamb.
Join Him on the Cross.
Join your crosses to His.
And when someone asks you for your precious end seat on a pew? Maybe you let them join you.