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Seasonal Meditations

Advent

"Do not put out the Spirit’s fire."

--I Thessalonians 5:16-24

“Our hands that reach out with the fullness of our desire must fold and rest. The fire that has burned with such glory in the autumn colors dies down, and we are left to tend our own inner fire, our heart’s desire, alone…to care for our heart and the seed of fire that is ours to nourish—to water it with our tears and warm it with our longing.”

--Kathleen Depro, spiritual writer

Glass image of the nativity sceneChristmas

"The silence is all there is.

It is the alpha and the omega.

It is God’s brooding over the face of the waters; it is the blended

Note of the ten thousand things, the whine of wings.

You take a step in the right direction to pray to this silence...

Distinctions blur…

Pray without ceasing."

--Annie Dillard, from Teaching a Stone to Talk: Expeditions and Encounters

Epiphany

"God of the light and of the darkness

open our eyes to the signs of failure

which reveal your presence

open our ears to your words

spoken in unexpected places

open our hearts to your love

shown towards us by those you have sent

to share our lives.

May our worship not interrupt true worship of you

may our agendas not leave out the Kingdom

may our planning not separate our confidence from

faith."

--Kathy Thorpe, from Celebrating Women

Ordinary Time

"The Christ who heals lepers comes to perform a much greater miracle – to heal us of our debilitating sense of self that fails to realize the sacredness and dignity of those we demean as 'lepers' at our own gates."

--Russell Roide, S.J.

Ordinary Time

“The Lord says, I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled.”

--Communion Antiphon, Feast of St. Ignatius Loyola

Lent

"This was the minute no one speaks of,

when she could still refuse.

A breath unbreathed,

Spirit,

suspended,

waiting.

She did not cry, “I cannot, I am not worthy.”

nor, “I have not the strength.”

She did not submit with gritted teeth,

raging, coerced,

Bravest of all humans,

Consent illumined her.

The room filled with its light,

the lily glowed in it,

and the iridescent wings.

Consent,

courage unparalleled

opened her utterly."

--Denise Levertov, from Annunciation

Easter

“When the night becomes dark, your love, O Lord, is a fire, your love, O Lord, is a fire."

--Jacques Berthier, Taizé chant



The archways of El RetiroPentecost

“O God, what will you do to conquer

the fearful hardness of our hearts?

Lord, you must give us new hearts,

tender hearts, sensitive hearts,

to replace hearts that are made of marble and bronze.

You must give us your own Heart, Jesus.”

--from a prayer by St. Claude de la Colombière, S.J.