A new liturgical year begins this coming Sunday, December 2, 2018, with the First Sunday of Advent. The Season of Advent consists of the four Sundays before Christmas. The liturgical color for Advent is purple or sometimes blue. We will begin a new liturgical cycle of seasons, feasts and fasts, and scripture lessons. This year the gospel will focus on Luke’s account with The Gospel … Continue reading Shh, Be Quiet, It’s Advent.
Psalm 62:1. “For God alone my soul in silence waits; from him comes my salvation.” One Sunday, years ago, I knelt to pray before the liturgy began, as was my usual practice. I always had something to tell or ask God. This day, however, was different. I had no words. It wasn’t that I had nothing to say—I simply lacked words capable of expressing what … Continue reading Prayer Begins When the Words End
A Word from the Desert Abba Macarius the Great said to the brothers at Scetis, when he dismissed the assembly, ‘Flee, my brothers.’ One of the old men asked him, ‘Where could we flee to beyond the desert?’ He put his finger on his lips and said, ‘Flee that,’ and he went into his cell, shut the door and sat down.”1 Reflection Abba Macarius shushed … Continue reading Lent with the Desert Fathers: Fasting From Words
The 14th century Sufi poet and mystic, Rumi, wrote, “Return to the root of the root of yourself.”¹ His words remind me that I often live on the periphery or circumference of life, disconnected from the root of my being and existence. To “return to the root of the root” of myself means returning to myself, becoming more fully human, and entering the deep heart. … Continue reading Silence, the Way Home
You need a spiritual pilgrimage. Begin by closing your mouth. – The Sayings of the Egyptian Fathers (Quoted by John McGuckin in The Mystical Book of Chapters, 47). Continue reading A Spiritual Pilgrimage
Today, March 19, the Episcopal Church celebrates the Feast of St. Joseph, his life and faith. St. Joseph was raised up to be the guardian of God’s incarnate Son and the spouse of his virgin mother.
The gospel reading for this feast is Luke 2:41-52, the story of Jesus in the temple at the age of twelve. Luke tells us that Mary, Joseph, and Jesus had gone to Jerusalem for the festival of the Passover. When the festival ended they started home but unbeknown to Mary and Joseph, Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. When they discovered this Mary and Joseph returned to Jerusalem to search for Jesus. “After three days they found him in the temple” (Luke 2:46).
Holy scripture does not tell us what went through Joseph’s mind and heart during those three days as he and Mary searched. I cannot help but wonder if he relived events, followed old familiar foot steps, and replayed dreams. What were those events, foot steps, and dreams? What filled him? Continue reading “St. Joseph, a Man of Silence”
And therefore you should observe silence! In that manner the Word can be uttered and heard. For surely, if you choose to speak God must fall silent. There is no better way of serving the Word than by silence and by listening. If you go out of yourself, you may be certain that God will enter and fill you wholly: the greater the void, the … Continue reading You Should Observe Silence
In a world of busyness, noise, and distraction one sometimes seeks a place of stillness, silence, and centeredness. Sometimes this means making a change in our external circumstances, always, though, it is about our inner enviroment. I have found that the loudest voices and the longest to-do lists are usually within me and not around me. I have also discovered that certain music is able … Continue reading The Silence of Music – Angelic Light: Music From Eastern Cathedrals
“Our most important task consists in remaining silent before this great God, silent with our desires as well as with our tongue. He understands only one language, that of silent love.” – St. John of the Cross in a letter to a Carmelite nun Related post: The Feast of St. John of the Cross – Mystic of the Dark Night Continue reading St. John of the Cross on “Our Most Important Task”
Abba Poeman said… A man may seem to be silent, but if his heart is condemning others he is babbling ceaselessly. But there may be another who talks from morning till night and yet he is truly silent; that is, he says nothing that is not profitable. (p. 171) If you are silent, you will have peace wherever you live. (p. 178) A brother who … Continue reading Abba Poeman on Silence