By Sharon Wilson


Photo courtesy of Sharon Wilson and Divine Mercy Catholic Church.*

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. (John 3:16)

This Scripture quote is from today’s Gospel. One can hardly not know this reading from John. It is plastered on bumper stickers, signs at football games, coffee mugs, and T-shirts. It has been called he most famous Bible verse. It has also been called the “Gospel in a nutshell,” because it is considered a summary of the central theme of Christianity.

It takes on as many personal stories and meanings as there are people.

Today, it holds a special meaning as I reflect on these words.

Yesterday was the 23rd anniversary of my own son’s death. At three weeks old, he died of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, leaving behind his twin sister and his two very broken parents. In this short post, I can’t fully explore what this Gospel passage means to me, but I know that it has taken 23 years to fully reflect on the gift Christ gave me in knowing that Jordan David Wilson did not perish but waits for me to join him in eternal life.

Today, reflect on some aspect of the gifts you have received because you believe in this “Gospel in a nutshell.”

*The above photograph is from the Garden of Mercy at Divine Mercy Catholic Church in Faribault, MN. Inspired by Sharon Wilson, the garden came into fruition by a group of volunteers from the parish. It is dedicated to all who have lost a child, before or after birth. A stone with a child’s name can be placed in the garden as a memorial. For more information, please visit Divine Mercy Catholic Church or call (507) 334-2266.