Conversion of St.Paul
We think of the conversion of St Paul as the moment when he fell to the ground and heard Christ’s voice calling him. Well, that might have been where the change in Paul began – when he fell down and fell apart, and was paralyzed, not knowing who he was, where he was, or where he was going; when he had to be led by the hand by one for whom he had only felt hatred and anger. There was the dawning realization of what he had been doing.
How often through the years did Paul wake up remembering the screams of those he tortured and imprisoned? How often remembering standing there happily watching Stephen being stoned to death? How often did he have to forgive himself or accept being forgiven by the people he had despised?
That day on Damascus Rd, Love took Paul by the hand and led him to a new way of being. First, he had to have the courage to face and admit what he had done and been. And then have the courage to let Love change him forever. And then the courage to do it over and over again.
For Paul, as for us, such a conversion takes a lifetime.
Fr Tom McDonough CP the Parish Priest of St.Brigid’s parish Marrickville.