In the liturgical calendar, January 25 is the feast for “the Conversion of St. Paul the Apostle.”  I always wonder why it’s not called the “Conversion of Saul into Paul” because he certainly wasn’t a saint at the time he was knocked off his horse on the road to Damascus (though there is dispute about the horse) by a light and a voice that pierced his heart and mind.   That illumination and call reversed everything he thought he knew and believed.  He truly couldn’t be the same person after that encounter. 

Our conversions are seldom so dramatic, but the experience of an encounter of the holy, of holy mystery, is life changing.  It might take much more time than it seemed to take Paul; it might take months, years, for us to process our understanding of the call in our lives, of being able to look at the pattern of the holy in our lives and see a path that leads to new insight and above all, change.  And it can be scary because I might discover I am more than I believed myself to be, and more loved than I ever imagined.

S. Priscilla Wood, OP
Dubuque, IA


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