How much time did you spend glued to your television or computer screens yesterday? How many of you were moved as you watched person after grateful person brought into the light and reunited with family and loved ones?

I will admit to spending my fair share of time watching the news story of the Chilean miners, and wiping away a tear or two.

I especially loved Deacon Greg Kandra’s brief reflection on the miners’ story yesterday.

For over two months, they lived in a tomb, among rocks and rosaries. They prayed in darkness, waiting for light they could only remember, fleetingly, from last summer.  And yet, they dared to believe.  They sent a flag to the pope, and letters to loved ones, and petitions, endless prayerful petitions, heavenward. People called it “Operation San Lorenzo,” for the patron saint of miners—a saint who knew something about buried treasure and prayer.  Thirty-three men persevered.  They struggled.  They hoped. 

And, in the end, God won.

God won. That’s what makes this story such a compelling (and mesmerizing) one for all of us.

Not many of us have ever been trapped in a mine, but every human being can relate to the idea of being trapped in darkness and despair, without hope. And having only God to turn to.

The kinds of news stories that usually make international headlines and captivate the attention of millions of people worldwide tend to be ones where God does not seem to be winning: war, poverty, disaster, crime, and scandal.

But God alone can penetrate the darkness. God alone is the light. And this time, God did indeed win. While the world was watching.

Thanks be to God.