The Cry to God as ‘Father’
in the New Testament
is not a calm acknowledgement
of a universal truth about
God’s abstract fatherhood.
It is the Child’s cry
out of a nightmare.
It is the cry of outrage,
fear, shrinking away,
when faced with the horror
of the ‘world’
- yet not simply or exclusively
protest, but trust as well.
all things are possible
to Thee …
- Rowan Williams
I find this a great prayer for this Lenten season. It is from Brendan the Navigator, the Irish saint who founded Christian communities throughout the British Isles. He was familiar with long journeys. Lent is a season of pilgrimage, a season for walking closely with Christ.
Shall I abandon, O King of mysteries, the soft comforts of home?
Shall I turn my back on my native land, and turn my face towards the sea?
Shall I put myself wholly at your mercy,
without silver, without a horse,
without fame, without honor?
Shall I throw myself wholly upon You,
without sword and shield, without food and drink,
without a bed to lie on?
Shall I say farewell to my beautiful land, placing myself under Your yoke?
Shall I pour out my heart to You, confessing my manifold sins and begging forgiveness,
tears streaming down my cheeks?
Shall I leave the prints of my knees on the sandy beach,
a record of my final prayer in my native land?
Shall I then suffer every kind of wound that the sea can inflict?
Shall I take my tiny boat across the wide sparkling ocean?
O King of the Glorious Heaven, shall I go of my own choice upon the sea?
O Christ, will You help me on the wild waves?
… as told by an Irish schoolgirl. From “Give Up Yer Aul Sins”, Brownbag films.
One of my closest friends identifies his two favorite holidays as Easter and St. Patrick’s Day. Paul’s Irish so it shoudn’t be too much of a surprise. This year he receives a special gift because St. Patrick’s Day lands during Holy Week. Two for the price of one.
The link below is an introduction to Celtic Christianity and recent book that talks about the valuable contributions this ancient form of our faith can make to our 21st Century journey. Also, after teaching on Psalm 8 this past week I thought his discussion about the differing views between the Celtic and Irish church regarding the nature and dignity of man would be useful. Enjoy.