Villa la Paz Newsletter September 2009
Posted on September 1, 2009
Filed Under Villa La Paz Newsletters
Theophany: a manifestation of God.
Webster’s New World Dictionary Third College Edition
It is God whom human beings know in every creature.
Hildegard of Bingen
The fullness of joy is to behold God in everything.
Julian of Norwich
God is humble. He is humility itself. We know of Him only through His creation, His Word that became flesh and dwelt among us and His Spirit that dwells in us. His omniscience and omnipotence are never perceived directly by us but are disguised in His works and revealed word. Every creature speaks of the Divine Artist. Some are lovely and pleasing such as a flower, a sunset, a piece of art or a comely child. Others can be displeasing and arouse negative feelings such as the homeless, the addicted, the incorrigible. If we are truly attuned to the Divine Presence in everyone and everything our response to the pleasing and displeasing should be the same: one of admiration, acceptance and solicitude. Our reaction to a well educated and well respected individual should be no different than our reaction to a homeless person, a beggar and the other marginalized persons who cross our path since all are manifestations of a Universal Father. Every person and all of creation are interconnected and intertwined to form a unity of one with the Creator. To knowingly disdain someone or something is to disdain Him who created us, and indeed, all of His creation. The universality of creation demands a positive response to those in need and to our world, a response that entails a respectful and solicitous attitude. If you are searching for God you will find him in the poor, the hungry, the sick, the dirty and, indeed, in our own brokenness. His love is unconditional and embraces all of creation.
Children are perhaps the quintessential manifestations of God’s presence. Born helpless into a sometimes cold and indifferent world their utter dependence for sustenance reminds us of God’s own birth two thousand years ago and again bespeaks of His humility. As such our home is a microcosm, a mini-universe which demonstrates His presence and unconditional love among us. Each child comes wi an imprint of the Divine. That is what sustains me this work.
Jesus of Nazareth lies hidden and helpless in all of humanity’s most vulnerable children, those for whom there is no room at the table. May we know the grace or our loving God in them and rebuild our troubled world for them to enjoy as God’s beloved daughters and sons.
Father Donald H. Dunson No Room at the Table [Orbis Books, 2003]
I believe that there are no gospel words that have made a deeper impression on me and have changed my life more than ‘As you did it to one of the least of these brethren, you did it to me.’
Charles de Foucauld
The following simple prayer by St. Joan of Arc will help us in our quest to make this a just and more equitable world, to serve God in His distressing disguise.
Lord, let me be a rock on which others can lean in their times of hardship. When all seem bleak send me signs of your presence, signs as simple as rainbows and smiles.
My sincere gratitude to all of you for being a beacon of God’s love to our children. We love you and wish you His peace.