Tag Archives: Faith

Come and See

But Nathanael said to him,
“Can anything good come from Nazareth?”
Philip said to him, “Come and see.”
—John 1:46

Carlo_Crivelli_055“Come and see.” For Nathanael (also known as the apostle St. Bartholomew), this was the moment when everything shifted, when the great adventure of his life began. These three simple words were an invitation to encounter the person of Jesus Christ, to enter into the all-consuming gaze of the Almighty. Just one interaction with Jesus was enough to change Nathanael’s doubt (“Can anything good come from Nazareth?”) into confident belief (“Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.”).

We, like Nathanael, may have our doubts about Jesus at times. But often the best way to strengthen our faith is not to debate whether a prophet could come from Nazareth—or, say, whether God could be present within situations of corruption and despair—but to go and meet Jesus directly. This is not to say that we should ignore our intellectual questions about the faith, but rather that we should remember that understanding flows first and foremost from relationship. We can’t truly understand Jesus if we don’t get to know Him. If we bring Him our questions and lay them at His feet, seeking to just be present with Him and allow Him to look at us, we will come alive in His presence. Experiencing Jesus fundamentally changes us, causing a perspective shift that affects everything we do afterward.

Jusepe_de_Ribera,_The_Martyrdom_of_Saint_Bartholomew,_1634And just as Nathanael’s experience resulted from an invitation from his friend, Philip, we ought to remember that our own experience of Jesus is not meant to be kept to ourselves. Just those three simple words—come and see—can change someone’s life forever. If we have been changed by Jesus, others will see the joy He has given us. Our own lives, our works, and our personal stories are what open the eyes of others to see the love of God.


1. Carlo Crivelli, St. Bartholomew / PD-US
2. Jusepe de Ribera, The Martyrdom of St. Bartholomew / PD-US

Originally published at Frassati Reflections.

The Mass

Something greater than Jonah is here (Mt 12:41b). I remember when I first read John 6:53-58, I was so touched that tears welled in my eyes. The Word of God spoke out so strongly to me, I never knew why I hadn’t read this before:

“He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed. He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in me, and I in him.” (Jn 6:54-56)

Indeed, this literal understanding of the passage had so much Truth it was difficult to believe! I remembered anxiously checking some historical and external sources because it was too unbelievable. Lo and behold, all of the early Christians from the time of the Apostles believed in this! I resolved there and then to come home to the Catholic Church. I desired strongly to confess my sins just so that I can receive Jesus again at Mass.

The Mass itself is so rich in reality that there are as many valid theological approaches to it as there are to the whole mystery of Christ himself. The Eucharist is part of the great living mountain which is Christ, a mountain that can be approached from all corners of the world at any Mass celebrated throughout the Catholic Church.

The Mass is no religious service. Prayers, rosaries, or singing songs — those are services. These are something that we do for God, similar to the public praise of any religious denomination. But the Holy Sacrifice of the Eucharist is not precisely in essence done by man at all.

The Mass is heaven on earth. The earthly Masses we celebrate here are mere prefigurements… a foretaste of the heavenly Mass; that which is the Lamb’s Supper. In Heaven, we celebrate the Eternal Union of the Marriage between Christ the Bridegroom and us, his Church and Bride.

However limited our spiritual insights might be as participants, when we are at Mass, Christ will be there. And we believe this through Faith in Jesus’s Words.