The Priest and the Imam

The dad who came up to me in the soda aisle of Sentry probably doesn’t know he made my day. As I pondered the kind of seltzer water I was supposed to buy, smiling, he approached me and said, “Did you see the Amazon commercial?” I knew exactly what he meant… “Yes, the knee pads and the priest and the imam?” “Yes!” he said, “I couldn’t believe I saw it right after Family Program!” “I know isn’t it great that we are on the same page, the same message from Family Program and Amazon” And inside I am cheering, “Yeah, when Church is relevant!”

A little background… the adults in Family Program just had a Parent Café discussion on the question,

How do you raise children who are strong in their Catholic identity but also can relate to those of other faiths? A challenging question, don’t you think?

The commercial the dad was referring to depicts a visit between two old friends, a priest and a Muslim imam.

As they each get up for their discussion, they privately (they think…) note their aching knees. In the next scene, you see the priest and the imam each are visited by an Amazon delivery, having each sent the other, knee pads. In the last scene, each of them is using the gift as a cushion kneeling in prayer.

Of course, I loved the commercial. But beyond that good will message sent into the world, my heart was lifted to witness a dad in our community integrating faith and life. Isn’t that what we all hope for? That our faith, our deepest beliefs and longings, are integrated into our everyday lives and that the messages from our Christian faith community are relevant to the myriad of issues that fill our days?

And I wonder what would happen if we more often took a page from that playbook of that commercial? We all hurt in some ways, often in more similar ways that we realize. And despite our differences if we choose the small acts of care can we change the world, one knee pad at a time?

Watch the commercial: