“I Took Your Place”

It’s the second week of Lent.

During this holy season, Christians are called to reflect on the Lord’s suffering and death more deeply.

I recently heard a priest tell a story to help the congregation begin to prepare their hearts and minds for Lent.

I was touched by the short story.

It’s helping me to enter into this season more deeply. It’s helping me to contemplate the Lord’s love and the sacrifice He made on Calvary — for me.

He made the same sacrifice for you.

I’d like to share the story. I found the text online, but it isn’t attributed to one particular author. I changed the text slightly to reflect the priest’s homily.

May you have a blessed and holy Lent!

“I Took Your Place”

One Sunday, a man went to visit a church. He arrived early, parked his car, and got out. Another car pulled up near him, and the driver told him, “I always park there. You took my place!”

The visitor went inside for Mass, found an empty seat, and sat down. Someone from the church approached him and stated, “That’s my seat. You took my place!” The visitor was somewhat distressed by this rude welcome, but said nothing.

After Mass, the visitor went into the chapel and sat down. Another member walked up to him and said, “That’s where I always sit. You took my place!” The visitor was even more troubled by this treatment, but still said nothing.

Later, the visitor stood, and his appearance began to change.

His clothes transformed into a simple robe. Horrible scars became visible on his hands and on his sandaled feet. A crown of thorns appeared on his head, and blood dripped down his face.

Someone from the congregation noticed him and called out, “What happened to you?”

The visitor replied, “I took your place.”

Church of St. Peter in Gallicantu, Jerusalem, Israel. Photo from a friend

+ If you haven’t done so already, check out my Virtual Pilgrimage for Lent

2 thoughts on ““I Took Your Place”

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