Archive for December, 2012

Christ Unexpected ….

30 December, 2012

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Lord, we expected you to be grand
But you have come
as a helpless infant.
We expected you at another time,
But you have come
in the silence of the night.
We expected you
to be dazzling, a king,
But you have come
as a fragile human,
like us.
We had our own idea of you
and you have defied
all our expectations.
Give us faith to believe in you
and recognize you as you are
and as you have come to us.

Miguel Alonzo Macias

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A spirituality of the heart ….

30 December, 2012

Passionist Spirituality … a spirituality of the heart.

If God has not got a heart, he has nothing. (St. Therese of Lisieux)

The faithful women ….

12 December, 2012

1a7c332348029d30b1548a2878b83737_0Every time I visit a prison, I am struck by the wives and girlfriends lived up  (often with two or three little children in tow) to visit their partners “inside”.

Prisons are very impersonal, unwelcoming places for all concerned and often visitors are treated with the same lack of dignity that the prisoners themselves experience. On face value, many of the women visitors appear to be a pretty rough lot, if they are judged by externals. But I never cease to admire them for their fidelity, for the huge effort that many of them make to travel to the place, for their seeming lack of any sort of judgemental attitude, for the devotion and love. I might add, their sense of humour must be called upon in a thousand ways.

I don’t know how many of them would regard themselves as religious, but surely they are living up to Jesus’ plea, “I was in prison and you visited me” (Matthew 25:35).

All of this prompts me to compare them to the faithful women who stood beside the Cross to comfort Jesus as he was dying.

(Reflection by Bishop Patrick Power, former Auxiliary of Canberra and Goulburn, Australia)

Waiting for the light ….

12 December, 2012

0136-Thoughts-Gods-Work-At-Christmas-2011-12-18In the world of their time, shepherds were looked down upon; they were considered untrustworthy and not admitted as witnesses in court. But really, who were they? To be sure, they were not great saints, if by that word we mean people of heroic virtue. They were simple souls. The Gospel sheds light on one feature which later on, in the words of Jesus, would take on particular importance: they were people who were watchful. This was chiefly true in a superficial way: they kept watch over their flocks by night. But it was also true in a deeper way: they were ready to receive God’s word. Their life was not closed in on itself; their hearts were open. In some way, deep down, they were waiting for him. Their watchfulness was a kind of readiness – a readiness to listen and to set out. They were waiting for a light which would show them the way. That is what is important for God. (2005 Christmas Message, Pope Benedict XVI)

God is not a burden

12 December, 2012

Take everything that happens as coming from the hands of God, who loves you; in this way every trial will become a source of peace and joy since God is not a burden, but rather comfort, joy and cheerfulness. (Letters of St. Paul of the Cross)