This month, we’ve been celebrating
6 July: Thomas Moore – spent some time combining the spiritual disciplines of the Carthusians with his training as a lawyer. He continued many of the Carthusians’ disciplines throughout his life, and drew on their love for gardens and their balanced approach to wealth.
11 July: Benedict of Nursia – the author of the Rule, and central to translating the desert contemplative tradition into the European context, and providing a balanced matrix in which we can flourish.
22 July: Mary Magdalene – one who yearned for Christ whom she thought they had taken away (Office Reading for the Feast).
23 July: John Cassian – his thought and writings are influential in all Western spiritual traditions.
28 July: Mary and Martha of Bethany – a way of holding together the active and the contemplative in one life and household.
The month concludes with
31 July: Ignatius of Loyola – a leader of being contemplative even in action, and who systematised disciplines that are as useful today – maybe even more so – than they were four and a half centuries ago.
And then, last Sunday, the Lectionary not only had the meal of Abraham and Sarah (us) with the Sacred Three – the LORD; in the Gospel, Jesus declared we have need of only one thing, and that Mary had chosen the better part, which would not be taken away from her. This Sunday we have another parable about prayer.
The liturgy has been, celebration by celebration, feast by feast, leading us deeper and deeper into a contemplative life, a contemplative life that continues on, as an underground stream, even when we are deeply immersed in action.