Thursday, September 17, 2009

Friday, September 18-20

Thomas Merton (d. 1968) was a member of the Cistercian Order of the Strict Observance, commonly referred to as Trappists. He spent his monastic life at Gethsemani Abbey in Kentucky. Merton was a prolific writer - an autobiography, works on spirituality, poetry, letters and his journal. He was finally able to answer a strongly held call to the eremitic life (a hermit). He died accidentally in Asia while seeking to engage monastics of other faith traditions.

Opening Prayer
Blessed are you, God, who sends redemption,
for this day of our salvation.
Today we remember the sacrifice of your love
poured out by Jesus on the cross.
In Christ, you did not shrink from the terror of human dying,
but embraced the ancient fear, which dimmed our eyes
from the light of your hope.
You breathe your spirit this day
into our human hearts
so that all creation may thrill at the wonders of your love.
All praise and honor be yours
through Christ and the Holy Spirit
forever and ever. Amen.

Read Romans 11:25-32

Monastic Wisdom on Hospitality

We cannot be too busy, too professional, too removed from the world of the poor to receive the poor and sustain the poor. To practice hospitality in our world, it may be necessary to evaluate all the laws and all the promotions and all the invitation lists of corporate and political society from the point of view of the people who never make the lists. Then hospitality demand that we work to change things.

Closing Prayer

God of the living, the shades of ignorance and fear are dispelled by the bright dawn, radiating from the woundsof the crucified Christ. Strengthen us in the Spirit, that, as Jesus did not shrink from our humanity, we may not shrink from your invitation to hoilness. We ask this through Christ our salvation. Amen.

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