The Sign of Jonah – Luke 11:29-32

After the resurrection, Thomas doubted that Jesus was alive and asked for a sign. He was able to touch the wound in Jesus’ side and to feel the holes where the nails were driven through his wrists.

Most of us will not experience Christ’s sacrifice like Thomas did. Instead we must rely on other signs; signs like Jonah calling on the Ninevites to repent and God’s persistence in keeping Jonah on track.

Ask yourself: “Can I look at myself this Lent and honestly see the vices that virtue struggles to overcome? Am I really trying to change?”

Click the arrow below, watch the images, listen to the stories. Accept the Sign of Jonah which, in the end, is really a sign of Christ.

The Sign of Jonah
by J. Michael Sparough, SJ

Night is now.
Its stillborn pain – familiar, harsh, and silent.
Apologies for the present:
A black leech has bit my soul,
And it bleeds, dark dead.

In shrouded eclipse,
Prophecies are past.
Prayers drift in corked bottles,
And guilt rips hope from my chest.

A quiet whisper, a faint flicker,
Light rises from the murky depths.
The eyes of my heart and ears of my soul slam shut,
Straining against this distant cry of Jonah.


Swallowing up the darkness,
The prophet’s words will not be ignored.
This torch still flickers; the whisper shouts.
“Forgive me, Lord… I know now what I’ve done.”

Silence, like an eternity,
Then a gentle thunder, now a raging flood.
Jonah belched from the belly of the beast.
Hope emerges from her tomb.

What I could never do for myself
Now is freely given –
Bathed in an ocean of mercy,
Unforced, unexpected, undeserved.
A grateful heart cries “Alleluia” to the heavens!

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