So I must admit that years ago, during one of my seminary evaluations, I was sometimes scattered. Whaaaat? Who me? (Oh look at that squirrel.) I’m not saying that there might not be some truth, but who wants to hear that? One of the professors said “Don’t worry brother, you have a wonderful ability to live in the sacrament of the moment.” At fi rst, I felt that was like giving me a runnerup trophy after being told I didn’t come close to winning fi rst prize…but that was before I realized there is no such thing as a runner-up prize in the “devout life” (as St. Francis calls it). In fact, I began to read up on what this “sacrament of the moment” really means – then I was in grateful awe for such a comment to be made! Fr. Jean-Pierre de Caussade, a 17th C. Jesuit missionary preacher who wrote passionately about the providential presence of Jesus, helped my heart to become more aware of how God gives us every moment so we can see it as sacred. Fr. Jean-Pierre de Caussade wrote: “To achieve the height of holiness, people must realize that all they count as trivial and worthless is what can make them holy…If we have abandoned ourselves to God, there is only one rule for us: the duty of the present moment.” Robert McKeon saw Fr. Jean-Pierre de Caussade as the one who has written an accessible guide to enter into prayer like St. Francis de Sales asks in the Introduction to the Devout Life, “Fr. Jean-Pierre de Caussade’s Treatise on Prayer from the Heart leads the reader step by step into deep mystical prayer. He answers our thirst for prayer by showing a simple and direct path to prayer.” Being on my pilgrimage a couple weeks ago, I found such a truth to renew my heart in living in the sacrament of the present moment. This can and must happen not only when life is happy and going your way, but especially when things happen that we do not plan for or in which we lose control. He wrote: “There is not a moment in which God does not present Himself under the cover of some pain to be endured, of some consolation to be enjoyed, or of some duty to be performed. All that takes place within us, around us, or through us, contains and conceals His divine action.” So take time to live in His sacred time.
Just a reminder that R.C.I.A. (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) is beginning a new season on Tuesday, September 10th at 7:15 p.m. in the Upper Room. Why not pray about someone who might need to be drawn more deeply into the Sacramental Life of the Roman Catholic Church. Need more information? Give us a call. (Also this Sunday is the feast of St. Louis so offer a prayer for Fr. Thomas…also for those under St. Genesius, patron of actors.) Pax, Fr. Bline