Friday, April 28, 2017

Divine Gravity

In one way, this began yesterday with a walk in the rain and an RSCJ sister (who blogs here) who wrote in praise of ordinary happiness.  In another way, it begins when I listen to the news every day, so little of it good, so much of it a picture of potential or actual devastation on a scale that makes me shudder.  And yet...and yet...I know there is more, something foundational, that is also real... I know...I believe... I find that I must.

Divine Gravity

Amidst the grey and the grim,
when the luminous theorems of physics
with their lenses and prisms and mirrors
bending light into beautiful
melt into the dampness and certainty wavers,
hold fast to the promise of divine gravity
that grounds us in the hope,
the in-breaking salvation,
of elemental joy.

When forsythia blooms her symphony;
The perfection of a plum’s design;
The unforgotten possibility of flight
at the height of the arc of a swing.

Kimberly M. King, RSCJ

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Easter Grace, 2017

Easter Grace 2017

You ask each of us to hold with our lives
a portion of this Holy Chaos—
a portion of what it means to be human,
made in your image and likeness,
and yet, and still, and completely, free.

So it is that we make our way
and we find our lives holding
the Truth of our world and the truth in faith
of who you call us to be, by your life, your witness. 
It is a sometimes contradictory fullness, that Truth:
Bombs, blooms; evil, awe;
Love, Humanity; Love, Divinity;
Love, Death; Love, Resurrection;

We ask your blessing
upon this meal we are about to share
and upon the company we keep
so that by the nourishment of both
we may continue to live and move and have Being
as Easter people.  As a people who believe
that there is a light no darkness can overcome;
that death does not hold us bound;
that Love will be what sets us free

to Rise; to Rise; to Rise.

Kimberly M. King, RSCJ

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Radical Style, Holy Chaos

From my notebook…

11 April, 2017

6:45 AM…Cat on the window sill, coffee in the mug.  With the window open about an inch, fresh air eases the closed in feeling of a winter whose time has past.  It’s nice.  This, from the reflection in Give Us this Day, before reading the front sections of the paper…
~The death and resurrection of the Lord is not a past event we re-enact through the tableaus of Holy Week.  Rather, it is a dynamic mystery that plays out in the holy chaos of our lives.~  Fr. Edward Foley

I like that…and then, I look at our world and wonder—Is it *holy* chaos, the bombings of whatever sort in Syria; the Coptic church bombings in Egypt; the lorry-as-a-weapon crashes in London and Stockholm; the volatility of Russia’s relationship with nearly anyone of late; the fact that Arkansas wants to execute seven inmates in one week? 

There seems little that is holy in any of that. And an enormous amount of chaos.

And then I remember the Kandinski mobile of evening light on the buildings last night during prayer.  I recall seeing seams of earth splitting with the life force of a stem less than a centimeter long.  I notice that Lauds is again being sung by a robust choir of songbirds, recently returned from unnamed adventures during their migration. 

There seems plenty holy in that. And a healthy amount of chaos too, though of an entirely different sort.

When I hold both of these sets of observations together, I arrive at a somewhat unexpected place. In the middle of our General Chapter 2016 document.  Specifically, I find myself considering one of the four calls named by the Chapter:

To live more humanly:

In the radical style of Jesus of Nazareth, we wish to be in closer relationship as sisters with one another and with others; we wish to be simpler, more human and closer to people and their experience, in order to show forth the joyful and compassionate face of God and to be at the service of Life, wherever we are sent.

To hold as much truth as we can is an extraordinary amount of chaos to bear.  And if I am honest, I hold my portion best when I am at my most human.  Most vulnerable.  Most free, transparent, honest… because that makes room within me for Love.  Love is what allows me to hold Truth, to bear the chaos that comes with it and not be completely undone by it.

Love allows me to enter the whole mess of Truth that is what it means to be fully human.  Bombs. Blooms. Evil. Awe. Love. Humanity. Love. Divinity. Love. Death. Love. Resurrection. Love.
And my model is Jesus. Who was hated and loved. Rejected and followed. Who was anointed and who blessed. Who cleared the temple, wept, and asked that “if you are willing, remove this cup from me; yet, not my will but yours be done.”  Who died on a cross. Who rose.

Radical style…holy chaos...indeed. 

Should it be your will, O God, may I have the courage through Love to enter in so entirely and with such fullness of Humanity.

 (NB:  Image is of an icon painted on the wall in the RSCJ novitiate in Poland)