A story out of Florida March 1 gives a whole new meaning to Jesus’ words “you do not know the day or the hour.” In the work of a moment, Jeff Bush, 37, was swallowed by a sinkhole Feb. 28 while in the bedroom of his home in Seffner, Fla., a suburb of Tampa. Though his brother, Jeremy, tried to rescue him, Bush’s body has not been found, and he is presumed dead.  

Bush residence
A memorial sits in place of Jeff Bush’s home. Newscom

The manner of Bush’s death is both tragic and ironic. He wasn’t drinking and driving; he didn’t overdose; he wasn’t out late. He was at his home, in his bedroom — a place most Americans would consider pretty safe. Without a moment’s notice, like something out of a horror movie, the earth opened up underneath him. 

Bush’s death was sudden and shocking. It’s easy to think there’s always a tomorrow, and that there’s always more time to be a better Christian, a better Catholic. 

As Lent comes to a close and Holy Week approaches, Catholics could perhaps use Bush’s story as a reminder of Jesus’ words: that truly we do not know the day or the hour when we might leave this earth. As St. Paul wrote, now is the acceptable time to come to Christ. What better way to begin than with confession?  

After all, the U.S. bishops wrote in a pastoral exhortation, it’s through this sacrament and the “grace of the Holy Spirit” that “we seek forgiveness and repentance, let go of patterns of sin, grow in the life of virtue, and witness to a joyful conversion.”