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Showing posts from September, 2017


Jesus said, "Let the one who is without sin be the first to cast a stone." I am the woman Discovered undercover Caught in the act Exhumed from hiding Beneath skin and flesh The secret desirings Of heart and mind I am the boy Who took refuge there A place of escape And safe solace My habitual habitation I am every one Who exists on the outside The other side of right And there is nothing That will not be revealed In the end And this is my end The law abiding strong Throng my orthodox accuser With only one solution The right of righteousness I am petrified Panic stricken stood bowed Barely able to breathe What will the first Struck stone feel like? What part of me Will bleed and break Before I am all blood broken Bone splintered? I gasp for air For life But God is merciful He who alone is Good Stands upright Sees all that I am - ALL - Absorbs me into Himself He bends down So that my bending Now has no shame in it And He


Prise open the night The clammed shut tightness Of  the wounded heart O God And let Light enter Where fear has taken hold Timidity hiding behind the door Cowering lest the cruel word Should penetrate once more Leaving it raw exposed I will give you a new Heart Says the Lord The Heart pierced through Broken open My own strong Heart By which you can  Go on living One beat One moment No set expectations Faithfully Steadfast In Spirit


My good friend the late Sr. Shirley Smith MMM in Tanzania It happened to me a few times in Tanzania that I got stranded when my car broke down miles away from anywhere. Fortunately I always had someone with me who could go for help while I waited with the car.  Waiting in the hot sun for hours on end is very challenging – the intense heat, the thirst, the tiredness, the not knowing when help would come. And I remember on one occasion getting back to the Mission house where there was watermelon on the table. I went for it with all the might of my thirst, devoured it and the relief it brought is something I will never forget. It was sheer grace upon the dryness of my parched throat! And when I think about the effect of God’s grace in my life, I think of watermelon, the effect of watermelon on my thirst. So when I read today’s gospel about the men waiting to be hired (Matthew 20:1-16), my sympathy automatically goes to the men who waited or worked in the heat all day long


St. Catherine of Sienna had a mystical experience in which she was taken to heaven where she experienced true joy in the presence of the Lord. It is said that Jesus came to her after some time and told her it was time to return to the world and she begged Him not to send her back. "But I need you to go and Love" He told her. "I am not able to love" she replied. Then Jesus took her heart from her, went away and came back a few days later with a shining human heart.  He opened her side and put the heart within her saying: “Dearest daughter, as I took your heart away from you the other day, now, you see, I am giving you mine, so that you can go on living with it for ever”  I'm not sure how accurate this telling of her experience is but the latter part is taken from Pope Benedict XVI's General Audience November 24, 2010. The important thing is that she was given the heart of Jesus himself, to live and love with His heart. Her experience came to

ALEPH (Sacred Quiet)

You take me away To Aleph when creation was Not yet begun Inserting my life Into that Silence before Speech was born Word waiting eternally Spirit hovering Making sense Of the senseless Formless void Here in the Sacred Quiet, my Father I wait For You to speak In the tumult Of Creating Love Like crashing waves Reshaping The Life that bids me Leap from solid ground Into the air And carried where The wild enfolding Breath of Spirit goes You are ever My Alpha and Omega Beginning and my End The Aleph and the Tav


From the deep and rich Recesses of my solitude I reach out to yours Your silence Speaks to mine Souls laid bare Breathing grace Into our mutual Aloneness Expanding the heart Stretching the emptiness Inhabited by Love Newly born Never before Tasted We hold each other close As a prelude to letting go Not knowing when the return


Our destination Is that place between Horizon and shore The shallows Left behind us Now The deep Untameable Wildness Is where we Labour in vain In exile Until all is wasted And we have given Up hope Holding only one Thread of trust that He has a plan And plummeting Again at His command We witness miracles That almost take us Under and leave us kneeling In contrite astonishment

Don't Let The Sun Go Down - Returning to the Haven of Hastings

It's the last song I'll hear in my red Toyota Yaris - Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me has come up randomly on my playlist. Elton John. Summer 1974! It ends as the car pulls up to the door of St. Benin’s in Shankill. Synchronicity! It reminds me of my cousin Anita singing the line “don’t discard me” with a little bit of mockery! And , more seriously, it also brings to mind St. Paul’s "Do not let the sun go down on your anger!" (Ephesians 4:26) which is always easier said than done but still always to be aspired to. Don't let the sun go down! But it does! The crossing of the Jordan featured in the readings at Mass recently and I’m aware that in crossing the Irish Sea I have crossed my own Jordan, with stuff to leave behind,  taking with me only what is necessary – materially, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. It’s a great opportunity. I've brought the car back to Shankill where it belongs and I'm on my way back to Hastings where I b