By now you’d have to be living in a cave not to know Pope Francis is visiting the US in September. Perhaps you also have heard that he plans to visit a prison while in Philadephia. At first when I became aware of this, I thought, huh, couldn’t His Eminency’s time be better spent visiting a school, a hospital or even a homeless shelter…instead of a bunch of criminals? After all, the Pope only visits our country every several years and he’s only here for a very short time and there are millions dying to see him. But this morning, sitting in church, praying about a difficult person or two in my life that it seems I am being called to work with (and am reluctant to), I realized something; the Pope is just like Jesus, leaving the 99 sheep to find the one that is lost. Jesus says “…there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents, than over ninety-nine righteous people who need no repentance.” (Lk 15:3-7) I was considering just “walking away” from one of these individuals in my life who is causing me anxiety yet may need my help – it’s too hard, I don’t have the time, it’s just not worth it, etc. It’s just easier to hang around the bunch of “good” sheep in my life instead of focusing on the problem “bad” sheep who is “lost.” But then what God calls us to do isn’t always easy, is it? And yet (usually I can see in retrospect) it somehow always helps us to grow – in humility and in love. This week I will try to love the “unlovable” in my life a little more.