A most memorable joke told to us by Father Benedict Groeschel a few years back concerned the reaction of a priest upon his arrival in Heaven. Recognizing the cast of characters whose confessions he had heard, he asked St. Peter: "How did THEY get in here?" Nodding his head toward Mary, St. Peter replied: "His mother." You just never know.
At Christmas, it seems people come out of the woodwork, or wherever they've been hiding, to return to the Church. This is a good thing. None of us knows what another person has been through or how it is that they have returned to the Lord. What we do know is the Lord often chooses the weak things of the world to carry out His will. And the person who is a seemingly annoying pest who cannot contain their exuberance at Mass may well have been sent to teach us more about ourselves than we realize. Do we see what Our Lord sees, or what we choose to see? For all we know, the Lord is estatic to see a fallen-away son or daughter return to Him and perhaps He does not care that the person makes it difficult for the rest of us to pray. At times like that, do I complain to myself, or do I offer the lack of quiet as a gift in thanksgiving for a lost soul coming back home?
At this time of year when external charity can come so easily, it seems a good time for me to do some soul-searching about my interior charity and remind myself once again that it's not about me, it's about Him.