See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. - James 5:7

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A proper and serious Advent reflection...



"Walk through these days as an announcing messenger."
.
The horror of these times would be unendurable unless we kept being cheered and set upright again by the promises of the Advent angels, who speak their message of blessing right into the midst of anguish, scattering seeds of hope. These are not yet the loud angels of rejoicing and fulfillment. Quiet, inconspicuous, they enter the rooms of our hearts...proclaiming to us the wonders of God, for whom nothing is impossible.
.
Thus for all its earnestness, Advent is a time of inner security, because of these angels of annunciation. Oh, if it should ever happen that we forget their tidings; if all we know is the four walls and windows of life's gray days; if we can no longer hear their gentle step; if our souls are no longer both shaken and exalted by their whispered word - it will be over with us. We will have lived wasted lives.So the first thing we must do, if we want to be alive, is to believe in the golden seed of God that the angels have scattered throughout time, and still offer today, to every open heart.
.
The second is to walk through these dark times as an announcing messenger oneself - to carry and spread the angel's message. So many need their courage strengthened; so many are in despair and in need of consolation; there is so much harshness that needs a gentle hand and an illuminating word; so much loneliness crying out for a word of release; so much loss and pain in search of inner meaning. But God's messengers know that this is not all: they know of the blessing that the Lord has cast like seed into these hours of history.
.
Understanding today's world in the light of Advent means enduring in faith, believing in the fertility of the silent earth, and awaiting the abundance of the coming harvest.
.
Not because we have any trust in ourselves, but because we have a task - because we have heard God's message, and have met one of God's announcing angels ourselves. -Alfred Delp, S.J. [Delp, Alfred. Prison Writings (Orbis, 2004)]
.
My conclusion.
.
Each of us have something to give... to offer support for one another in these days of moral anarchy...  As Fr. Delp noted - we have a task... we have something of value to communicate - to edify and encourage and defend our brothers and sisters.  To the point of exposing ourselves to ridicule, rejection, contempt, unto  loss of life - everything human nature fears.  Souls are at stake.
.
"What must we do?  He said to them in reply, 'Whoever has two coats should share with the person who has none.  And whoever has food should do likewise...'" (Luke 3: 10-18)  Just so, whoever has survived some form of tragedy, suffering, sorrow; anyone who has been converted from a sinful life, a life of addiction; anyone who has encountered that place where "justice and peace have kissed, mercy and truth have met" - needs - must - give to those who have not.
.

.
Photo:  Trial of Alfred Delp, S.J.
.
Thanks to my Bruderhof brother for the Fr. Delp passage.

3 comments:

  1. Maria7:26 PM

    This is simply beautiful. Thank you, Terry.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Are you a Bruderhof man? A Catholic Bruderhof?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Brother William, I am not associated with Bruderhof, but my friends are. Both were religious - in the sense of having tried their vocation in monastic life. They met later and married and lived the Catholic Worker life, but they sought (and needed) greater community and one more welcoming of families. They then continued on to Schoenstadt (sp?)which may have led them to Bruderhof, where they finally found what they had been searching for. I think they have been with them for over 30 years.

    I would say their spiritual life is intensely ordinary - I mean that in the best way possible. They work for peace and justice quietly and consistently, their whole life is a witness. They also have a wonderful devotion to the Eucharist. I believe they are great souls.

    I would say they are Catholic Bruderhof.

    ReplyDelete


Please comment with charity and avoid ad hominem attacks. I exercise the right to delete comments I find inappropriate. If you use your real name there is a better chance your comment will stay put.