Thomas merton essay on prayer of trust
and worldviews at a whim. Not a conservative Catholic. Though the papacy of Pope Francis has gone some distance in retrieving the vision of Vatican II, the US and global Catholic church remains deeply polarized over the meaning and reception of the Council, much as it was in 1968, the year of Mertons death. Sometimes the best gift I could give them was an uninterrupted hour in the deep silence of the school chapel, where we would sit, breathe and watch sunlight play through stained glass. Writing here as a teacher and parent, I offer four enduring lessons this famous Trappist monk can teach us about nurturing the Catholic imagination.
I do not see the roa d ahead. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really. My Lord God, I have no idea where.
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This was no small gift. A New Look at Grace: A Spirituality of Wholeness is a classic can help us teach them the language of grace. Thomas Merton reminds us what we risk losing if we do not remember the song of our faith. These themes include prayer, challenging certitudes, dialogue and peacemaking. Merton felt drawn to correspond and enter into relationship with many kinds of people: believers and unbelievers, intellectuals and ordinary people, from around the world. Bernard of Clairvaux: that there exists in human nature itself an ineradicable potentiality for divine union, which is the very image of God. Merton upended that presumption, suggesting that the world in which all women and men concurrence dissertation find themselves was in fact a world in which God seeks connection and relationship with all people. This is, in part, because Mertons superiors censored much of his writings on topics like racism and war, peace and violence, during his lifetime, fearing that it would be scandal for those people who did not feel it appropriate for a Catholic monk to write. Journaling was for him a means of paying attention to the hand of grace in his life and a way of exorcising the ego-demons that kept him from greater love, surrender and prayer. If Merton were alive today, I think he would tell us to get over. For reasons that have always remained a mystery to me, some Catholics have viewed Father Thomas Merton, American Trappist monk and best-selling author, with suspicion. Plays right into the hands of moral relativism!
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