12.13.2010

WOW #4

From moral weakness of spirit; from timidity; from hesitation; from fear of men and dread of responsibility, strengthen us with courage to speak the truth in love and self-control; and alike from the weakness of hasty violence and weakness of moral cowardice,

Save us and help us, we humbly beseech Thee, O Lord.

From weakness of judgment; from the indecision that can make no choice; from the irresolution that carries no choice into act; and from losing opportunities to serve Thee,

Save us and help us, we humbly beseech Thee, O Lord.

-- The Southwell Litany for the Personal Life

Holy friendship has no looks but what are simple and modest, no caresses but those that are pure and sincere, no sighs but for heaven, no familiarities but those of the soul, no complaints but that God is not loved, the infallible signs of purity.

Worldly friendship confuses the judgment…  Holy friendship has a clear light and does not seek to hide itself, appearing willingly before good men.

-- St. Francis de Sales

Stand Still and See

   I’m standing, Lord:
There is a mist that blinds my sight.
Steep, jagged rocks, front, left and right,
Lower, dim, gigantic, in the night.
   Where is the way?

   I’m standing, Lord:
The black rock hems me in behind,
Above my head a moaning wind
Chills and oppresses heart and mind.
   I am afraid!

   I’m standing, Lord:
The rock is hard beneath my feet;
I nearly slipped, Lord, on the sleet.
So weary, Lord! and where a seat?
   Still must I stand?

He answered me, and on His face
A look ineffable of grace,
Or perfect, understanding love,
Which all my murmuring did remove.

   I’m standing, Lord:
Since Thou hast spoken, Lord, I see
Thou hast beset—these rocks are Thee!
And since Thy love encloses me,
   I stand and sing.

-- Betty Stam

Always you renounce a lesser good for a greater; the opposite is what sin is . . . The struggle to submit . . . is not a struggle to submit but a struggle to accept with passion.  I mean, possibly, with joy.  Picture me with my ground teeth stalking joy—fully armed too as it's a highly dangerous quest. -- Flannery O'Connor

For Christmas is not merely a day like any other day.
It is a day made holy and special by a sacred mystery.
It is not merely another day in the weary round of time.
Today, eternity enters into time, and time, sanctified,
is caught up into eternity.
-- Thomas Merton

The Carol of Seven Signs

The briar in a dry land grows;
Mary shall wear the blood red rose,
Her Son shall wear the thorn.

Saint Joseph cut the cherry tree
Whose fruit he gave to his lady.
then what was left? The stone.

Saint Joseph cut mahogany
To make the babe a crib—but He
Was to the manger born,
To wood already worn.

One father split the cedar tree
And made two beams: A house! cried he;
A cross, the other mourned.

Shepherds brought wool to the royal stall
For the mother a robe, for her darling a pall
for sleeping both cold and warm.

Three gentlemen offered three measures of myrrh,
A drop to perfume, a sponge to blur,
A tun to embalm the Lord.

And gold is lovely to the eye
But cold as stone to him who lies
Behind the golden door.

Now these—the briar and the cherry,
Wood and wool and gold—did Mary
Ponder when Christ was born.

Within her breast she kept it all,
A thorn, a cross, a stone, a pall,
And they herself adorned—

For the pain was His, but He was hers,
Her child, the treasure of her purse,
By whom her womb was torn:
Et eius Salvator.

-- Walter Wangerin, Jr.

1 comment:

Lily of the Valley said...

Thank you for sharing the Carol of the Seven Signs! So lovely, and an amazing contrast of the birth and death of Christ!

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