Advent IV of the annual Advent series is a bit different this year. I had someone write to me from New York City this morning and say— I’m sure you probably know this, but Xavier is using one of your poems in this year’s Lessons and Carols! I had no idea… The Church of Saint Francis Xavier was my parish home for the three years before I entered religious life and for the four years when I lived there again, working at a Sacred Heart school. I was involved in many different ways, had many friends, could share gifts, and it remains a pinnacle of liturgical experience for me.
I looked at the worship aide for this virtual/live/streamed event and found the piece. Looking it up on my blog took me to the very first blog entry I ever wrote…thirteen years and one month ago. Amazing. It was such a gift to know that they would still want to use something I’ve written though it’s been years since I have been there…a gift to know that the work lives on its own and continues to do good. And, best of all, it came as a complete surprise…And I realized that sharing that gift from Xavier was the best fourth Sunday of 2020 that I could offer: a reminder that we may not know how a simple act becomes a gift with which someone else moves forward toward hope, toward God with us, Word made Flesh and dwelling among us. Thank you, Xavier, for that gift and for your company on the journey…
All of the Wise Journey
In my nighttime winter wander
toward the radiant Word becoming,
anoint me, star bright God,
with the oil of gladness.
And, oh more than please,
let it not be with only a little.
I want to feel it
seep and smooth
into my veins, my heart, my joints
that I might speak with ease of Glory;
that I might kneel in awe
at the close of a luminous journey,
burning within at the wonder
of what I have become
and what I will then behold.
Here is a link to the recording of the beautiful evening of Lessons and Carols from the Church of Saint Francis Xavier, NYC…