Going through the Dark Night to reach the light of Christ

Dear Fellow Parishioners,

The events of Charlottesville, Virginia are on my mind as I am sure on the minds of many of us. The situation in North Korea also is in the balance and I have been walking on egg shells; trying to get the message out to you and not offend anyone’s political stance regarding these situations. I have used tactful expressions to speak to you this weekend and many weekends to share where our Christian and Catholic teachings address these issues in the hopes that we hear God speak to our hearts. “God is found in the whisper and the calm; not in fire and fury!” In the prayers, I wrote: “For our nation, that we may recognize God is present in the whispering winds and calm waters; not in fire, fury or weapons!” Tact is not one of my strengths; I have other gifts and I hate walking on eggshells.

St. John of the Cross wrote a poem “The Dark Night of the Soul” and I am feeling our nation is now experiencing this Dark Night. This is a good thing, it is about the necessity of purging the things that keep us from union with God so that we can draw closer to communion with God. The events of Charlottesville bring to our attention the moral issues that are facing our nation and need to be brought to the surface so that we can speak to the anger, hatred and bigotry that is present in some areas of our country and many areas of our lives. The Dark Night invites us to be still and address the hurt and the pain that some are experiencing. Trying to understand the experience of others is often a painful part of our faith journey. We cannot turn our backs on where people are at.

The good news is that we go through the Dark Night to reach the light of Christ. Certainly, the Civil War was a Dark Night for our country and led to freedom for many who were oppressed. We need to trust that God has not abandoned us and will assist us in growing through this time of uncertainty and help us to become the people God calls us to be.

Together let us listen to the ways God speaks to us as we gather on the weekends, and know that the Word of God speaks directly to the events and situations that are happening in our lives today if only we take the time to listen. It is easy to give in to anger, hatred and violence; it takes more energy to be still and listen to God who speaks in the whisper and the calm of the storms of life. Let’s listen together!

Fr. Bill