Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Moving with Grace

Never go ahead of grace by an imprudent eagerness,

but quietly await its movements, 

and when it comes to you

go along with it 
with great gentleness, humility,

fidelity, and courage.

October days beckon me to take a road less traveled. 

One of my favorite people is my "Little Sister" to whom I have been a "Big Sister" for eight years. She is sixteen. On an early October Sunday we took a ride to Pownal, VT and discovered a hidden road.  Most of our time was spent in silence. We were in the world of apple orchards, horses and beauty beyond our imagining.

This past Sunday we decided to take a little walk. The walk took us and we went along with it to the magnificent Natural Bridge State Park in North Adams.  

Here we were welcomed to spend time in the presence of a marble carved arch formed by the force of glacial melt 13,000 years ago. The area rests on 550 million year old bed rock marble.

Growing up is quite a challenge for my "Little Sister" and accompanying her has called forth from within me great gentleness, humility, fidelity and courage. We have discovered that walking in nature, often in silence, is providing a new way for us to communicate. 

As far as I am able, I will companion her through these adolescent years and quietly await the movements of grace that come to us.

I value the counsel of Maxim 84.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

In Nature, Grace and Glory!

... in nature, grace, and glory for time and for eternity ...

Autumn in the Berkshire Hills of Western Massachusetts is glorious. As over many a country road I travelled these past two weeks, I was taken out of myself by the beauty, while invited from within to stop and take it all in. Are not earth, mountains and sky also neighbors that seek relationship with us?

I stopped to photograph this scene in Cheshire on my way to Mont Marie last week. Such presence speaks to me of nature, grace, glory and fidelity. It also speaks to me of time and eternity.Father Medaille tells us in Maxim 40:   "Love nothing that is not eternal."

Our Sister Andrea touched our lives in a glorious way this past week as she fulfilled to the end her promise to live out Maxim 73:  " Live out your life with one desire only: to be always what God wants you to be in nature, grace, and glory, for time and for eternity."

As we shared memories at her wake service we were brought into the beginning years of her life as a Sister of St. Joseph in Fall River. I was particularly touched in hearing that when she was anointed a day of two before she died, that she opened her eyes and told those present that she wanted to tell about her vocation. She spoke of how at age 5 she had heard God to speak to her heart saying, "You  are mine you belong to me." At age 12  she experienced God again speaking to her as she received Holy Communion saying,"You belong to me and I want you to be a Sister."  She entered religious life at age 16 and was a sister for close to 80 years! It was evident in the sharing that she influenced many people from her earliest days until the very last.

Like the autumn trees, Andrea's beauty, in the midst of much suffering and joy, caused us to stop and take in her life among us. It is a blessing to know that we are one, in nature, grace and glory throughout eternity.
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