Monday, July 20, 2009

On retreat.

I'm about to start my annual eight-day retreat and would welcome and appreciate your prayers. I will not be posting anything on this blog during the retreat, though I will check my e-mail each day and moderate any new comments. As I enter into relative silence, I'll leave you to meditate upon this passage from Book IX of St. Augustine's Confessions:
Imagine a man in whom the tumult of the flesh goes silent, in whom the images of earth, of water, of air and of the skies cease to resound. His soul turns quiet and, self-reflecting no longer, it transcends itself. Dreams and visions end. So too does all speech and every gesture, everything in fact which comes to be only to pass away. All these things cry out: "We did not make ourselves. It is the Eternal One who made us." And after they have said this, think of them falling silent, turning to listen to the One Who created them. And imagine Him speaking. Speaking Himself, so that we could hear His word, not in the language of the flesh, not through the speech of an angel, not by way of a rattling cloud or a mysterious parable. But Himself. The One Whom we love in everything. Imagine we could hear Him without them. Reaching out with speeding thought we come to Him, to the Eternal Wisdom which outlasts everything. And imagine if sight of Him were kept available, while all lesser sights were taken away. Think of this encounter, seizing, absorbing, drawing the witness into the depths of joy. Eternal life would be of a kind with this moment of understanding.
Once again, I welcome and appreciate your prayers this week; please know that I will be praying for you as well. AMDG.


At 7/22/2009 8:43 PM, Blogger Michelle said...

Joe -- my prayers are promised for you on retreat. May grace abound.

At 7/23/2009 1:37 AM, Blogger David Paternostro, SJ said...

I'll be sure to pray for you.


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