In this Christian feast of «All Saints», I want to say how I understand and deal with living some aspects of my faith in eternal life. Those who know and follow Jesus Christ will understand me.
For me, to believe in heaven is to resist accepting that the life of everyone and of each one of us is just a little parenthesis between two vacuums. Relying on Jesus, I intuit, feel, desire and believe that God is leading toward a true fullness our desire for life, justice and peace that are part of creation and part of humanities’ heart.
For me, to believe in heaven is to rebel with all my power against the fact that a huge majority of men, women and children in this life have only known misery, hunger, humiliation and suffering, being buried forever in oblivion. Trusting in Jesus, I believe in a life where there is now no poverty, no one is sad, no one needs to cry. Finally I would be able to see those together in the boat of life arrive at their true homeland.
For me, to believe in heaven is to draw near with hope to so many people without health, the chronically sick, the physically and mentally handicapped, those plunged into depression and anxiety, those tired or living and struggling. Following Jesus, I believe that one day they will know what it is to live in peace and full health. They will hear the words of the Father: Enter into your Master’s joy forever.
I do not accept that God will always be a «hidden God», whose gaze, kindness and embrace we can never know. I can’t fathom the idea that I’ll never meet Jesus. I do not accept that so much effort for a more human and happy world gets lost in emptiness. I desire that the last will be first someday and that the prostitutes go in before us. I desire to know the true saints of all religion and of all atheisms, those who loved anonymously, expecting nothing.
One day we will be able to hear these unbelievable words that the Book of Revelation puts in God’s mouth: «To the one who is thirsty, I will give to drink freely of the fountain of life». Free! Without deserving it. That’s how God will quench the thirst for life that we find within us.
José Antonio Pagola
Translator: Fr. Jay VonHandorf