Thursday, March 19, 2009

In Grateful Memory: Natasha Richardson (1963-2009)

In grateful memory of Natasha Richardson.
She was a gift to her family and friends
but also to all of us
through her theatrical and film work and her charitable endeavors.
She graced the earth only for a little while
but the footprints she leaves mark an indelible trail of goodness.
If the theater and film world have a Camelot couple today,
Natasha and Liam is our Camelot couple.
Natasha blended the best of Grace Kelly and Princess Diana.
She was another "Candle in the Wind."
Sincerest condolences to her family and friends,
especially to her beloved Liam and sons.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Third Sunday of Lent 2009

The Lenten Journey With (rather than to)Jesus ...

It's not quite the mid-point of Lent yet, but clearly the journey towards Easter so far has been moving quickly. It's not too late though, I tell myself, to make sure that I am making the most of Lent and the opportunity it presents to focus on the inward journey through my outward relationship to God, Church, family, friends, co-workers, and the world.

This first piece of Lent has been a time of finding my Lenten space. It's been a bit of challenge to hold the focus that I think Lent deserves yet each day I try as I can to be deliberate about observing Lent. My goal this week is to be more deliberate not for the sake of practicing but for the sake of perfecting. It's not a matter of rehearsing but of consciously and conscientiously using the time of this special season to keep the internal gaze on Jesus as the One who leads us to Easter. It's not just a question of following him but of being led by Him along the road He chooses for us this Lent/Easter journey. Sometimes we set forth a map that we believe is the way for us to reach the Sacred Triduum yet in fact God has a better way to lead us to the Easter moment. As I have been reminded before, the grace is also in the journey and not just in the destiny. In fact, we may have missed out abundantly if we only look to the graces and blessings of the destination. The journey, too, may be a moving destination to be opportunized.

As we approach this third week of Lent and look towards the Laetare moment of next Sunday, let us be open to experiencing the rich graces of journeying with Jesus in the present moment. In each face of Christ we see this week -- whether it be the homeless man at the traffic light, the domestic violence victim, the single mother struggling to make ends meet, the friend in prison, the simple everyday people in our lives, may we also see the woman at the well, the Samaritan woman, the women of the Gospel who also walk with Jesus. In these encounters may we find the Lenten journey God has mapped for us individually so that we can arrive at the Paschal feast of Easter to celebrate together the joy of Jesus' resurrection.