Welcome Home

By Brea Cannon

Connecting Faith and Life

As my family and I sat down one Sunday for lunch, a car slowly rolled down our driveway. At first, my husband and I thought the driver was lost or had the wrong house. As I went out to greet the car, a familiar face got out of the passenger door. It was a previous owner of our home - she and her husband moved six years ago. As we embraced, I whispered to her, "Welcome home."

She and her husband moved to be closer to family but still very much love the home and property. As we walked around the property the previous owner had constant tears in her eyes. She shared that her husband died this past year and how hard it had been since his passing. 

As she and her daughter walked around, she said the walk around brought back memories and connected her to heaven in an indescribable way. The place she once called home with her husband gave her comfort and peace once again.

I was happy our home gave her some solace. There is something profoundly special about a home. Homes are places of rest. 

As I thought about our home and how much it still means to the previous owner, I thought about how much greater our eternal home will be. We will share in eternal rest together. Our homes are where we grow up or where we raise our families. They are places where we can learn to love and get along with others.  

As great as our homes are here, our heavenly home is beyond our comprehension. If our homes can give us comfort and peace, imagine how much more our eternal home will give us. It will fill us with love that only God himself can give - for he is love and the source of peace and rest. 

St. Augustine of Hippo famously wrote, “You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless, until they can find rest in you.”

Peace and comfort can never fully be fulfilled in this life. Our homes are merely a vessel God uses to show us how to love and be loved. It is in the memories and love shared in the home - newlyweds coming home together, parents bringing home a new baby, raising children with crayon murals on the walls, fingerprints on the windows, families praying together, empty nesting, enjoying Sunday dinners with children and grandchildren — where God shows us a glimpse of his love and our eternal home.

When we moved back to my hometown in the summer of 2022, I was excited to be close to the church where I grew up. St. Joseph’s Church in Bramble no longer has Sunday Masses but Jesus is still present in the tabernacle for prayer and adoration.

The first time I returned to St. Joseph’s for quiet prayer an inner peace and consolation came over me and a voice in me said, “Welcome home.” 

It was in that St. Joseph’s Church and community where I first found my home in our Lord. That was where I was raised, received sacraments as a child, where my grandfather is buried, and where I first felt a love that surpasses all of my understanding. It is truly a home. 

We were each created to spend our eternal life with our Lord in heaven. The closest we can get to that on this side of heaven is in our Eucharistic Jesus. My husband and I now have a holy hour of adoration in a local adoration chapel once a week. That holy hour is the highlight of our week. As I return to the adoration chapel time after time that inner voice once again bellows out, “Welcome home!” 

God wants to make his home in us, everywhere we are. Whether it is in the stillness of a church, the peace of an adoration chapel, or genuine love and memories shared with family and friends in our homes, he is present and inviting us to grow closer and to rest in him. God desires to say to us, “Welcome home.” May he dwell and radiate in each of us everywhere we go. For home is truly where the heart is … the heart of our Lord.