Church Life

So I wrote a poem...

It's about the priesthood, written from the perspective of a young man discerning the priesthood. It draws a lot on the Song of Songs, the city-centered ministry writings of Rev. Timothy Keller, and some beautiful things Bishop Robert Barron says about his own priesthood. I hope you enjoy.

I’m dying for you to meet her.
I need you to love her
you would realize that everything changes when you discover
how great are her eyes,
centuries seen, it’s a beautiful thing,
when through her scarlet lips you hear salvation sing.
I thought I was just in love with the King,
till he showed me his Kingdom.
I hear tales of countless lives,
but all I saw was a Bride,
radiant, spotless and strong,
Just like the song Her scarlet lips intoned:
of the naked King on a wooden throne,
dying, forsaken and alone,
of empty tombs and Spirit’s groan
with sighs too deep for words and
He spoke of a Virgin
who was also a Mother,
of men from a thousand races calling out to one another,
and saying “brother.”
A thousand races, but only one, our Father.
The King showed me his Kingdom and what I saw was a Bride,
and those in her where alive,
like a pre-born child rushing to the light.
And he told me to love her.
To make his Bride my life, my wife,
to become a father.
I thought I was in love with the King, till he showed me His Kingdom.
Then I saw with his mind the only necessary thing,
I need her song so I’ll help her sing,
a collar as my Roman wedding ring,
Now I love with the King, love the very same thing.

She drove me mad, I left family, jobs- all that I had,
when I saw her curls flow down like Gilead.
One glance, I was sold.
And If I may be so bold, I’ll describe her:
Her curves are the cityscapes,
alleyways where sinners hide and undo the living of their lives.
I had been bitten by the harshness of their hurts,
She would be their lily among the Bramble of the City.
A garden grown with gospel sown,
a mountain of myrrh in streets grimy and gritty.
Her curves are the tears falling down moms’ cheeks,
who cried for weeks and weeks, and dads’ vision blurry,
burdened with so much worry,
when Empires come crashing down,
and I am still smitten with the Kingdom.
Where the broken and the lame, known by name,
their hurt, lies and shame,
assumed in the day of pain that He made it Good.
Made us good.
That Friday is the shape of my neighborhood.
For so many years I lived Thursday, borrowed time,
thinking life is but a joke.
It was her voice I heard as the thief kindly spoke.
Telling me the hour’s getting late.
In sin our blocks separating, widening the gap between us,
but the King without hesitating, throws himself into the breach.
one man landing on Normandy beach.
Self-emptying silence, a perfect contrast,
where love constantly challenges fate.
And that’s why I love her. He made her so pretty,
Sunday life of daydreams made real,
that even thieves could hope to steal,
and find repose in His repeal.

I’m dying for you to meet her.
I live so you will love her.
And discover what I have uncovered:
there is no throne who would have Christ selfish and alone,
without the Church for a Mother.
I thought I was just in love with the King,
till he showed me His Kingdom and in my freedom,
I learned to love with the King, to love the very same thing.
— Roman Wedding Ring