Follow the light?

| Father Charles Lachowitzer | November 21, 2018 | 0 Comments

Author’s note: Herschell — yes, with two “L’s” — was a character I invented while studying in Jerusalem in 1989. Since then, in those parishes and schools where I have served, Herschell was a familiar fellow who learned his lessons the hard way and still, somehow, through it all, reflected the heart of God.

Father Charles Lachowitzer

Father Charles Lachowitzer

Once upon a time, not too long ago and not too far away, there was a man named Herschell. Now Herschell was in his “man cave” (the garage) rearranging his toolboxes for a project he had yet to begin. He noticed on his chainsaw-brand clock that it was time to go back to the house to rejoin his family.

As he walked from the garage to the house, he could see through the picture window that his family was watching one of those game shows. He knew that they were daydreaming about what they would do if they won all that money and all those prizes.

Suddenly, Herschell saw that the nighttime sky had taken on an eerie glow. He could see that some kind of light was shining down from the clouds and touching the earth somewhere in the near distance. He shouted as loudly as he could for his family to come outside. Even though they were engrossed in the promise of televised riches, they thought Herschell was hurt and they rushed outside.

Herschell just pointed to the sky. His wife, Miriam, stared in awe. Their daughter, Herschellette, was puzzled and asked if it was an “oofoe.”

“That’s U.F.O.,” corrected Miriam. “It means ‘unidentified flying object.’ I don’t see anything flying.”

Their son, Herschellum, was pointing his MyPhone to take a MyPicture to send to his MyFriends. It went viral and in a short time, dozens of people arrived to stare at the strange sight.

Herschell cried out to the crowd, “It might be a holy light shining on a holy place or even on a holy person!”

There was excitement in the crowd as many anticipated some kind of new Bethlehem. “We should go on a pilgrimage!” cried out one bystander.

And so they all did. They began walking toward the place where the light touched the ground. Some sang hymns. Others prayed. Still others shined their LED flashlights up at the cloud, blinking their lights on and off, hoping for some kind of extraterrestrial communication.

Herschell ran ahead of everyone else. He was the first to reach the top of a ridge, and he couldn’t believe his eyes. He turned around and yelled, “It must be really big! There must be a thousand cars already!”

As the others broke into a run, Herschell stared more closely at the phenomenon, and his heart sank.

The light was not shining down from the clouds on to the earth, but rather from the earth up in to the clouds. It was one of those swiveling, million-candle spotlights. And there, in front of all those cars, was a huge sign that read: “Welcome to the Mall of America!”

Already there are the annual holiday displays of so many lights. As we prepare for the Advent and Christmas seasons, which light will you be following?

¿Sigue la luz?

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Category: Only Jesus