Our churches are blessedly becoming more diverse as our neighborhoods continue to receive people from every race, language, and culture. But this has not come without challenges. Some parishioners have had to let go of “their pew” to make space for newcomers. With church mergers, parish secretaries have had to manage multiple groups wanting the same meeting space.
Music ministers have had to learn new songs and rhythms, involve unfamiliar instruments, sing in foreign languages and styles, and learn music in a different way when other age groups, cultures, and liturgical sensibilities join the community. Others have had to wrestle with their conscience over welcoming parishioners whose attitudes, politics, orientations, or ways of life don’t match their understanding of what is right.The Canaanite woman’s persistence and her faith that could only have come from God widened Jesus’s understanding of the mystery of salvation. Click To Tweet
Today’s readings ask us: Who has a right to God’s mercy and salvation?
When confronted with a foreigner asking for something that, in that day and age, did not belong to her, Jesus had to struggle, too, with that question. But the Canaanite woman’s persistence and her faith that could only have come from God widened Jesus’s understanding of the mystery of salvation. We may not comprehend how it will happen, but if we trust in God’s power and accept God’s mercy for ourselves and for others, then we, too, will know God’s house to be “a house of prayer for all peoples” (Is 56:7).
This post was first published in “GIA Quarterly: A Liturgical Music Journal.”
Image credit: Photo by Gus Moretta on Unsplash.