Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Song of the Soul that Rejoices in Knowing God by Faith (St. John of the Cross)

  For I know well the spring that flows and runs,  
although it is night. 
That eternal spring is hidden, 
for I know well where it has its rise, 
although it is night. 
I do not know its origin, nor has it one, 
but I know that every origin has come from it, 
although it is night. 

I know that nothing else is so beautiful, 
and that the heavens and the earth drink there, 
although it is night. 
I know well that it is bottomless 
and no one is able to cross it, 
although it is night. 
Its clarity is never darkened, 
and I know that every light has come from it, 
although it is night. 

I know that its streams are so brimming
they water the lands of hell, the heavens, and earth,
although it is night.

I know well the stream that flows from this spring
is mighty in compass and power,
although it is night.

I know the stream proceeding from these two,
that neither of them in fact precedes it,
although it is night.

The eternal spring is hidden
in this living bread for our life’s sake,
although it is night.

It is here calling out to creatures;
and they satisfy their thirst, although in darkness,
because it is night.

This living spring that I long for,
I see in this bread of life,
although it is night.

--St. John of the Cross, 
Cantar del alma que se huelga 
de conocer a Dios por fe
Poem source (with the poem in the original Spanish)

Monday, May 23, 2016

The Hospitality of the Trinity (Lauren Winner)

   In the Christian doctrine of the Trinity, we find another resource for hospitality.  The Trinity shows God in relationship with Himself.  Our Three-in-one God has welcomed us into Himself and invited us to participate in divine life.  And so the invitation that we as Christians extend to one another is not simply an invitation into our homes or to our tables; what we ask of other people is that they enter into our lives.

--Lauren Winner, 
Mudhouse Sabbath

Image source:  Andrej RublĂ«v, Hospitality of Abraham.
(For more information on this icon and its relationship to the Trinity, click here.)

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Mary's joy (Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen)

   All love tends to become like that which it loves.  God loved man; therefore, he became man.  For nine months [Mary's] own body was the natural Eucharist, in which God shared communion with human life, thus preparing for that greater Eucharist, when human life would commune with the Divine.  Mary’s joy was to form Christ in her own body; her joy now is to form Christ in our souls.

--Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Mutual Love (St. Augustine)

          And the Holy Spirit, according to the Holy Scriptures, is neither of the Father alone, nor of the Son alone, but of both; and so intimates to us a mutual love, wherewith the Father and the Son reciprocally love one another.

--St. Augustine, 
De Trinitate, XV.17.24

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Sunday Gospel Reflection, May 22, 2016: The Spirit of God will guide you to all truth...

  How can we enter into God’s unbound vision?  

   The peoples of the Old Testament were familiar with God the Creator, whose first possession, the Book of Proverbs tells us, was Wisdom herself, who was present at all of Creation:  When the Lord established the heavens, I was there… Wisdom, a quality or extension of God, is poured forth by God, who creates all things – including the human race – through Wisdom in a state of rapturous delight.  Hence Psalm 8 proclaims, O Lord my God, how wonderful your name in all the earth…, praise that is concomitant with the stewardship of Creation offered to humankind:  You have given him rule over the works of your hands… Only faith can teach us to enjoy the Wisdom that God offers; only faith can expand our vision, helping us to see as God sees.

   Yet humankind does not seem to be able to maintain such vision:  rather, we sin, separating ourselves from God and from God’s Wisdom.  But Jesus Christ, God’s Wisdom incarnate, came to restore us to relationship; in a radical shift from Old Testament theology, through his dying and rising, Jesus effected forgiveness for all.  Through Jesus, we have gained access by faith to this grace in which we stand, Paul tells the Romans; our belief in Jesus restores our access to God, and thus restores us to relationship.

   And, as Jesus tells the disciples shortly before his death in John's Gospel, the Spirit of truth will continue his work, guiding them to all truth, sharpening their vision, helping them to see and appreciate the truth that is Jesus himself, that truth into which we are trying to enter more deeply through faith.  The united figure of that truth – the Trinity itself – is beyond our vision, to be sure, but our ability to trust, to have faith, to know that hope does not disappoint, enables the Spirit itself to give us peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.  Faith in the Trinity, in short, is our access to salvation, and in time, to the unbound vision of God. 

This post is based on Fr. Pat's Scripture class.
Image source:  Wordle