The Irish people just had a referendum on same-sex marriage. The enthusiasm of the young people who wanted to right a historical wrong was impressive. We saw the hashtag of #hometovote, and the array of photos demonstrating a heartening spirit of caring.
There were massive voter participation, and outreach as well. Ireland had a significant Catholic identification. The church bishops urged voting ‘no’, but the laity evidently decided to follow the examples of Jesus, whose ministry showed concerns for the welfares of the marginalized people.
We cannot guarantee the same result in a different location, but when the people involved are open to an honest dialog, the Holy Spirit can help people of different backgrounds bridge a gap that has separated us for thousands of years. For now we can be grateful because God’s grace is open to us even in this broken world.