“Make a place to sit down.
Sit down. Be quiet.
You must depend upon
affection, reading, knowledge,
skill—more of each
than you have—inspiration,
work, growing older, patience,
for patience joins time
to eternity. Any readers
who like your poems,
doubt their judgment.”—
Wise words for writing a poem… and for making your life a poem. Read the whole thing over at the On Being website. (And take a listen to this week’s On Being, “The Poetry of Creatures” featuring a conversation with Ellen Davis on Genesis and land, interwoven with the poems of Wendell Berry. Brilliant.)
our prayer can add nothing to your greatness.
No words can fully express who you are,
for you dwell in light and mystery.
Only through Jesus Christ,
your eternal Word made flesh,
can we know you;
only in your Holy Spirit
can we give you fitting praise.
O God beyond all praising,
may we praise you always,
not only with words,
but with prayerful thoughts and loving deeds.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
“Thus was conferred sovereignty, glory and dominion,
and all peoples, nations and languages became this One’s subjects.
This sovereignty is an eternal Sovereignty which will never pass away,
not will this dominion ever be destroyed.”—
“Let us praise the God of the Universe who alone works great wonders,
who from the day we were born sustains us and treats us with mercy.
May God give us a heart filled with joy and may we live all our days in lasting peace in Israel.
May God show mercy toward us and rescue us in goodness.”—
Lectio, 24 November 2011 - US American Thanksgiving
Cold and chill, bless the Lord
Dew and rain, bless the Lord
Frost and chill, bless the Lord
Ice and Snow, bless the Lord
Nights and days, bless the Lord
Light and darkness, bless the Lord
Lightings and clouds, bless the Lord
Let the earth bless the Lord
Praise and exalt Him above all forever.
“The chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people, meanwhile,
were seeking to put him to death,
but they could find no way to accomplish their purpose
because all the people were hanging on his words.”—
“We need to remember in the midst of our disagreements that how we speak to each other on matters on which we have differences matters enormously. I want to make a plea here for remembering that we are talking with and about people who are our brothers and sister…however misguided we may think they are at various times. We are talking with and about people who we are asked to love by the Christ that taught us to love even our enemies.”—from “How We Talk to One Another" by Susan Stabile on her blog, Creo en Dios!
“Since it is the Creator of the universe who shapes our beginnings, and the Creator who brings about the origin of everything, the Creator will mercifully give back to you both your breath and your life, because you now disregard yourselves for the sake of the Law.”—
“In Wisdom is a spirit
intelligent, holy, unique,
Manifold, subtle, agile,
clear, unstained, certain,
Not baneful, loving the good, keen,
unhampered, beneficent, kindly,
Firm, secure, tranquil,
And pervading all spirits,
though they be intelligent, pure and very subtle.”—
“Wisdom is a spirit, a friend to us mortals, though She will not tolerate the words of blasphemers;
for God can see our innermost beings, observes our heart, and listens to our speech.
For the Spirit of God that fills the world is all-embracing and knows what we say.”—
Earlier this week I had an experience that broke my heart. It left me wondering, again, why I even bother with church stuff. It seems that each time I dare to hope that the church can be inclusive and welcoming and a place where people can explore their faith rather than be subjugated into subservience, someone behaves in a manner that reminds me that we still have an awful lot of work to do before we get there. It’s not just the Catholic church, of course. There are plenty of Christian faiths that need to spend less time judging and more time engaging. After a day or two of musing about the experience, I was able to move beyond my hurt and remember how important it is to be a person in that broken place in the Church, and to not back down from the convictions I have, from the beliefs I know to be true because of my experience of the grace given to me by Jesus Christ while be open to the truths someone else holds. That’s what you do in the broken places. You bridge the gap.
My broken heart, though, was a pretty minor thing when you think about the things people have endured through the years ministering in the broken places. My life is not in danger; the only danger I really face is someone getting angry with me. Yet, I get such profound inspiration from the stories of the Latin American martyrs, especially the Four Churchwomen martyred in 1980. I pray that no matter what I am confronting I will be faithful.
Prayer: Dear Creator, may we, like the Latin American Martyrs, be willing to have our eyes opened and our lives changed. May we ask daily, as Maura Clarke asked on the eve of her murder, “Will I be faithful?” With the other churchwomen, may we be willing to live our faith without fear of reprisal. And with the spirit of all Latin American martyrs and saints, may we be bold enough to speak truth to power even when the truth will cost us. Bless us with your love of justice.