Day Four

Kneeler 39

Isaiah 58

9b If you remove the yoke from among you,
the pointing of the finger, the speaking of evil,

10 if you offer your food to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted,
then your light shall rise in the darkness and your gloom be like the noonday.

11 The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your needs in parched places.
and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden,
like a spring of water, whose waters never fail.

Fr. Laurence Freeman, OSB, "Dearest Friends," The WCCM International Newsletter, October 1997, pp. 2-7.

St Anthony of the Desert once spoke to his monks about the judgment day which they would each confront in their moment of death. He told them that they would not be judged on how far they had become like him, or like any of the other great masters of the desert, but to what degree they had become truly themselves. Holiness as the goal and meaning of human existence may be a quality we recognize in many different people, a scent we are conscious of. There is universality about holiness which cuts across age, culture and religious boundaries. It is not the product of a particular brand of training and however much individual ideologies try to claim it for themselves it defies any attempt to label it. What is universal about its nature is that it becomes perceptible in people who have become themselves. Holiness is the presence of God in the human beings who are God's image. Becoming holy is then simply the conscious reunion of image and original.

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