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Thomas Merton

Commemorating Thomas Merton

Thomas Merton

Today, 10 December, It is 53 years since Thomas Merton’s death.

He is one of the most-influential spiritual writers of recent times.

He was born in Prades, France, of a Kiwi father and American mother. His dad went to the school where I have been chaplain, and the Merton family name is significant in the school.

I spearheaded adding him to the NZ Anglican calendar, and I’m delighted he is formally celebrated in The Episcopal Church in Holy Women Holy Men. The collect there is:

Gracious God,
you called your monk Thomas Merton to proclaim your justice out of silence,
and moved him in his contemplative writings
to perceive and value Christ at work in the faiths of others:
Keep us, like him, steadfast in the knowledge and love of Jesus Christ;
who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

A particularly famous prayer that Thomas Merton himself wrote is:

My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope that I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and will never leave me to face my perils alone.

If you wish to explore further, put “Thomas Merton” into the search box of this site and you will be pointed to a variety of resources and reflections.

Prayer and Thomas Merton
Thomas Merton – Day of a Stranger – A Film being prepared [I’m SO looking forward to it]
Centenary of the Birth of Thomas Merton
Thomas Merton and Christ’s College [the school where I serve IRL]
Merton & Mindfulness
Remembering Thomas Merton
Kiwi connections to Thomas Merton
The Journey of Thomas Merton
Thomas Merton and Thích Nhất Hạnh

The Thomas Merton tag on this site. And as I said, you can also use the search box on this page.

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