Sunday, January 21, 2018

The Holy Father in Peru

Pope Francis meets with the contemplative nuns.

I love what he said to them, and how close he is to them.  The Holy Father has a contemplative vision, and I am convinced these contemplatives understand that.  Others will disagree however.  That is fine.

It's what I have come to know however.  Though I risk being presumptuous, it is why I love everything to do with abandonment, obscurity, and so on.  It's why I keep returning to this prayer.  I love repeating my posts on abandonment, to remember and not forget what it means.  "From the time that a soul becomes firmly established in abandonment, it will be protected from the opposition of talkers, for it need not ever say or do anything in self-defense."

Online talkers, pundits, canonists, teachers, academics, clerics ... everyone online and off seem to rebuke and use so-called rebukes to discredit and shame - and more subtly - silence.  They are like the teachers of the Law who scolded the man born blind:  "You were steeped in sin at birth; how dare you lecture us!"  Every day I come across something these people have said in their own defense.  They flash their credentials, "I'm a canon lawyer - how dare you call me out."  Let them do that.  That is fine.  There is no need (for me) to say or do anything in self-defense.

Anyway.  I'm convinced that the Holy Father, like the Carmelites he loves so much, is completely animated, vivified by love.  Quoting St. Therese, the Pope encouraged the nuns gathered to see him at the Shrine of the Lord of the Miracles:
Missionary prayer makes us one with our brothers and sisters in whatever situations they find themselves, and asks that love and hope will never fail them. This is what Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus said: “I understood that it is love alone which prompts the members of the Church to act and, if there is no love, neither would the Apostles proclaim the Gospel, nor would the martyrs spill their blood. I recognized clearly and I was certain that love subsumes in itself all vocations, that love is everything, encompassing all times and places, in a word, that love is eternal… in the heart of the Church, who is my Mother, I will be love”. - Address to Cloistered Nuns, Lima

“Seeing you all here an unkind thought comes to my mind, 
that you took advantage (of me) 
to get out of the convent a bit to take a stroll,” he said, 
drawing roars of laughter from the nuns, many of whom were elderly.

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